Bonimot Tzedek High School Activism

  • Tzedek kids join a protest alongside their madrichimot from Camp Moshava!

HDNA teens across North America have been hard at work! This year, we introduced a new movement wide program called Bonimot Tzedek, that aims to give youth the tools to be leaders, changemakers and activists in their communities.

At the beginning of the year local chapters selected a social justice issue they felt passionately about working on. They then formed partnerships with a local organizations who were already campaigning and working to change policy on the issue the participants had selected.

Throughout this year Bonimot Tzedek teens have learned many different methods of organizing, from lobbying their state representatives to educating people in their communities. To learn more about specific actions Bonimot Tzedek chapters have been taking and hear from the participants themselves, visit our blog: https://hdnatzedek.blogspot.com/

Here are some more specific updates from our local chapters:

Bonimot Tzedek at Galil

Galil teens have been working on issues of gun reform. We’ve partnered with CeaseFirePA to learn more about the current legislation and potential legislation. Alongside CeaseFirePA we went to the PA capitol to lobby and met with our local representatives as well as lieutenant governor John Fetterman to discuss our goals and why we’re taking this task on. We’ve also spent time with Repair the World Philly and March for our Lives Philly in partnering to host an event focusing on the role of art in activism and highlighting the voices of youth affected by gun violence. Learn more about Camp Galil.

Bonimot Tzedek at Tavor

Tavor teens chose a few issues to work on this year including: police brutality, water justice and immigration reform. In Chicago, Tzedek has partnered with JCUA (Jewish Council on Urban Affairs) to work on campaigns alongside of them and will be attending a lobby action day later this month at Illinois State Congress. Because Tavor Tzedek participants are spread out and live in many places (such as Chicago, Detroit and Minneapolis), a lot of their learning is done online through zoom! This has allowed participants to better understand a variety of social justice issues in many different local contexts. Learn more about Camp Tavor.

Bonimot Tzedek at Gilboa

Gilboa teens, looking to critically engage with their local communities have spent the year learning about and working towards justice for immigrants. Through partnerships with local organizations, such as Bend the Arc, the group has attended protests, educated Jewish communities and attended vigils for freedom. Core to their experience is the understanding that immigration and immigrants are not a crime; and that those who seek to promote that value are in opposition of freedom, dignity and our Jewish values. Another essential understanding we have learned is that change does not happen overnight. This does not however, diminish the importance of the work – nor should it diminish the fun of doing the work. This has been especially relevant as local California laws have seen increased protections of immigrants while federal policies have gone the exact opposite direction. Learn more about Camp Gilboa.

Bonimot Tzedek at Mosh

Moshava teens have been working on issues of immigration justice. In doing this work we have been partnering with Jews United for Justice in Montgomery County. We’ve been working on developing the skills needed to be young organizers. Through our partnerships we have seen that steady consistent work creates more just communities. This year, we’ve read testimony at public government priorities hearings, gone to Annapolis to lobby for the TRUST Act, spoken and run programming at JUFJ’s labor seder, and learned from guest speakers, including an artist activist and an organizer from CASA de Maryland, both of whom organize for immigration justice and provide direct services for immigrant communities.
Learn more about Camp Moshava.

Want to get involved? Contact Madison Slobin, National Director of Bonimot Tzedek, at tzedek@habonimdror.org.

For more updates, subscribe to the Bonimot Tzedek blog!
https://hdnatzedek.blogspot.com/