Source: eJewish Philanthropy
Jonathan Mirvis, in reflecting on the great impact of the free Taglit – Birthright trips on Jewish youth around the world, suggests that Jewish communities offer teen weekend retreats gratis, in order to re-engage tens of thousands of teens annually who are otherwise “lost” to the organized Jewish Community. He suggests that "for the multitudes of Jewish youth who attend public schools and whose connections with fellow Jews and Judaism are scant, this could be a life changing experience."
"Similar to Taglit we could operate the retreats along a set of defined guidelines, using existing vendors (i.e. Jewish camps, youth movements, synagogues and schools) without having to create a new infrastructure. These organizations would be challenged to not only organize the retreat but also devise follow up programs to ensure that this educational experience is not simply a “one off”.
In locating the retreats locally, travel costs should prove to be minimal and thus the cost of the retreat per participant should not prove to be exorbitant.
Using Taglit as the paradigm, this is certainly doable!"
Read the entire article on eJewish Philanthropy.