Frequently Asked Questions – Teen Fellowship Week

What kinds of skills do Teen Fellows learn?

Teens learn a variety of farming, homesteading, and craft skills, which may include seeding and transplanting, bed prep, animal care, cooking and knife skills, fire building, printmaking, felting, cordage, natural dyeing, herbal medicine making, and candle making. Additionally, teens will have the opportunity to learn and teach one another during a skillshare session. The Teen Fellowship also engages teens in a variety of community skills, including conflict resolution, working in groups, Non-Violent Communication, and anti-oppression training. Other skills for personal growth include mindfulness and Jewish spirituality practices.  

 

What leadership opportunities will Teen Fellows have during this program?

Teens will have the opportunity to practice leadership during their “design-and-build” session in the afternoons; this may include, for example, an art installation, designing a new part of the garden, or building benches or shelves for various program spaces. Teens are responsible for meal preparation under the guidance of teen mentors, and have opportunities to lead aspects of our Avodat Lev (meditation and song) each morning and Kabbalat Shabbat, our Friday evening ritual.

 

What should Teen Fellows bring with them each day?

A small backpack containing – water bottle, journal and pen, sun hat, sunscreen, close-toed shoes, and snacks. Please label all items with your name.

 

Do Teen Fellows sleep on the farm?

The Teen Fellowship week includes one overnight experience on the farm (either Wednesday or Thursday night). The evening may include a documentary screening of a food justice related film, a bonfire, skillshare, story slam, or musical jam session.

 

How do Teen Fellows get to and from the farm?

Teen Fellows can be dropped off and picked up at the farm each morning and evening, drive themselves, bike, or take public transit. We have some parking available onsite, otherwise there is street parking available. We encourage carpooling! One of the Urban Adamah staff will sign-in and sign-out each Teen Fellow upon arrival and departure. If teens decide to bike please know we have bike storage as well as showers onsite. Additionally, if teens need to leave early, we ask that parents are in touch with the Fellowship Director directly by phone or email. We will not allow teens to leave the site early without written approval from guardians.  

 

Does Urban Adamah provide lunch?

Yes, each day we will have healthy, organic, kosher, vegetarian lunch prepared by the Teen Fellows as part of the fellowship program. Fellows should bring their own snacks and reusable water bottle.

 

What is the level of Jewish observance during the Teen Fellowship?

Urban Adamah is welcoming and accommodating of folks with a wide variety of Jewish practices, including teens with limited Jewish learning or observance backgrounds. We explore Jewish values such as peah (sharing the harvest with those in need) ba’al tashchit (do not waste) and tsa’ar ba’alei chayim (compassion towards animals), and help our participants connect to the earth and themselves through Jewish stories and teachings. No prior Jewish background or knowledge is assumed or required.

Some of the Jewish programing components are as follows:

  • Morning practice: Inspired by the traditional Shacharit service, we offer time each morning to connect through song, meditation, and movement.
  • Blessings over food: We set intentions and give thanks before and after we eat food.
  • Jewish teachings: We weave Jewish teachings and stories into our farm work and workshops to help bring an awareness of earth connection within Jewish tradition and history.
  • Shabbat celebration: We will be preparing for Shabbat by crafting the traditional ritual items – candles, grape juice, and challah – with our own hands!

All food served at the farm is vegetarian using only kosher ingredients. Feel free to be in touch with any further questions.

 

Is Urban Adamah an inclusive place for genderfluid/LGBTQ teens, Jews of color, teens of non-conventional Jewish backgrounds?

At Urban Adamah we know that biodiversity helps an ecosystem to be resilient and to thrive. We feel the same way about our community! When we bring folks of different backgrounds together we learn more about ourselves, we break down barriers that might be keeping us from loving and understanding one other, and we create a resilient and strong community. We aim to build programs that can host a wide variety of beliefs and orientations to tradition and ritual. We aim to use non-gendered language both for one another and when talking about the divine. We also have non-gendered bathrooms on site. Additionally, we aim to teach beyond the Ashkenazi/white traditions that are often assumed to be what “Jewish” means, because Jews come in all shapes, sizes, and ethnicities, and we are glad about that.

 

Is there a waitlist?

Yes, if the program is full, register as usual using the waitlist option.

 

How can Teen Fellows stay involved after the summer?

Teen fellows can attend our weekly and monthly volunteer opportunities on the farm throughout the year. The Fellowship Director is available to support teens in pursuing more learning and connection beyond the summer. We can also partner with your teen’s synagogue or youth group to offer youth programs during the school year.  If teens would like to bring their community to the farm, they can be in touch with the education department at education@urbanadamah.org.

 

Any questions that we haven’t addressed?

Please contact Rachel Binstock, Fellowship Director, by email at rachelbinstock@urbanadamah.org or by phone at 510.649.1595 x 104.