• Reflecting on Parkland, from a Brit in Jerusalem

    It was the gasp heard “around the world.” This past weekend, I sat in a room with eight students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and 50 members of Netzer Olami, the global progressive youth movement, at their annual gathering. When the Parkland students shared that there are nearly 100 deaths a day in America due to gun violence, the gasps of shock in the room were clearly audible.


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  • Discovering the Best Version of Myself

    I found God in the front right corner of the Teatron at the URJ Kutz Camp. I met my best friend in the dance studio on the bottom floor of the art building. I had my passion for feminism ignited on a cloudy day while sitting in Pagoda Jacob.


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  • Words of Torah Shine Brightly this Hanukkah Season

    I close the door, turn off the lights, and run straight to my bed. Quickly, I climb up, and cocoon myself under the covers. I try to go to sleep, but I can’t. I am haunted by what I do not know, what I cannot properly understand.


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  • A Gibush Ima

    When we started the URJ Kutz Camp Teen Inclusion Program (Gibush), an inclusion program that fully integrates camp participants who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), I had no idea that almost three decades later, I would become the parent of one of the Gibush participants.


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  • 3 Ideas for Cultivating Teen Reflection and Introspection During the High Holidays

    As we slip into Elul, thoughts about the holidays are swirling in my head. I’m an educator who loves using the Meyers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) as a tool to advance self-reflection, interpersonal dynamics, and building resilient teams. For me, this time of year is an especially unique dance between introversion and extroversion, moving in and out of our comfort zones with our Jewish values embracing us along the way.


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  • Coming Full Circle

    As I made the turn onto the country road that leads to URJ’s Kutz Camp, I recalled the journey over twenty-five years ago when I showed up for my first summer at URJ’s Camp Coleman. Going to Camp Coleman, I was looking forward to a summer of canoeing and camp activities, and while I loved all those experiences, in the end I was given something even greater.


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  • True Love Looks Like This

    Yet, leadership opportunities, job positions and young adult engagement programs have always been out of reach. So often, the self-defined “inclusive” Jewish community does not actually include people like Michael.


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  • Taking the Plunge

    My name is Chanel Shirazi and this is my first summer at The Kutz Camp. I’m a Reform Jew from New York and a proud NFTY GER alum. Surprisingly, I never had the desire to spend my summer at 46 Bowen Road.


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  • Best Decision I’ve Ever Made

    This is why I came back to Kutz and why it is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The decision to come to Kutz last summer was simple and easy and because of all of the amazing things I had heard, it didn’t take much thought. This year however, it was a bit of a different situation.


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  • Losing my Voice, Finding Perspective

    So I’d like to start off by saying that I’ve never actually written a blog post before. Like, ever. So I hope I’m doing it right. But I guess I’ll find out. For those of you who don’t know, I spent these past 4 weeks at URJ Kutz camp in Warwick, NY. Here I’ve spent my days from exploring my skills as a leader to self defense to even how political activism ties into late night tv.


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