Watching Them Grow: Staff Reflection – Ari Abramson

Ari as a participant on AWB NY after Hurricane Sandy (8th from l)

I could not be more excited to begin my 4th Alternative Winter Break with Young Judaea! Having done two trips as a participant and one as a staff member, I have witnessed the amount of positive influence that Young Judaea has been able to have on the communities that we serve. Last year after wrapping up a week of volunteering at PATH (People Assisting the Homeless), our group received a handwritten card from the full-time staff and residents. It felt good knowing that the hard work we put in throughout the week was acknowledged and appreciated.

In Los Angeles this year, we’ll be expanding the social issues that we focus on during the week to include: LGBTQ inclusivity within the Jewish community, pollution and environmentalism, elderly care, support for victims who suffered from domestic violence, and teaching the importance of social change to children.  The best part about being a staff member on AWB is being able to watch the participants grow as they do community service, ask important questions, and have meaningful conversations with their peers. Look out for some crazy pictures and stories as AWB unfolds throughout the week!