Your Federation Dollars Making a Difference for Jewish Teens

Maimonides teaches that there are eight levels of tzedakah and the ascent up each level leads to a more just and equitable form of giving. All tzedakah is good, but the intentionality and dignity by which donations are made can have an elevated impact on both the donor and the recipient.

Values like intentionality, acts of loving kindness and the responsibility to not stand idly by that governs the direction of our San Diego Jewish Teen Initiative. We believe that these values will help our teens live richer, fuller lives.

Last Sunday, October 22nd, the Jewish Teen Initiative provided an opportunity for teens from over 50 high schools to explore these values through the lens of volunteer service at Motiv8. Attendees learned from inspirational speakers, participated in dynamic workshops and met more than 35 nonprofit expo organizations offering teens ways to serve the San Diego community. Teens explored service through eight levels of motivation (it’s required, it looks good for college, my friends are doing it, I want to help, I want to commit, I want to lead, I want to make an impact and I want to change the world). It was an incredible day!

We closed with a pep rally to motivate teens to take action, gave away a $1,000 college scholarship and showed our gratitude for their desire to make our community a better place.

Motiv’s next community event will be the International Good Deeds Day on Sunday, April 15 where high school teens will be given the opportunity to participate in dozens of service projects throughout San Diego County. BUT DON’T WAIT! Teens can find, participate and record service projects through Motiv; even projects they do on their own, with their schools and through clubs. Go to to learn more.

The Jewish Teen Initiative is actively working to make sure that San Diego teens find their connection to our community and their heritage. The strategy involves working with over 25 organizations serving Jewish teens to create pathways for engagement through meaningful programming, inspiring teen leaders and developing strong teen educators. Together we have created, a portal for "Jewish teens to find Jewish things" to do in addition to finding internship, scholarship and other opportunities for high school teens.

The Jewish Teen Initiative is a core strategy of the Jewish Federation in partnership with the Jim Joseph Foundation and the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center on behalf of our entire Jewish community.

To learn more go to


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