The Caribbean Regional Kinus, a gathering of dedicated Chabad emissaries…
CTeen, is working to ensure that no Jewish teenager is denied the opportunity to attend its summer programs due to financial constraints. This year, the organization is offering a number of scholarships to Jewish teenagers worldwide, to attend any of its summer experiences.
This past summer, hundreds of Jewish teens joined CTeen on an impactful trip through Israel and Poland. This year, CTeen Summer is offering a highly-discounted rate—and opening a brand-new trip along with it, allowing every teen to join the life-changing journey.
For many Jewish families, affordability is the only thing holding them back from sending their children to a Jewish school or camp. Add record-high inflation rates and travel costs to the equation, and the prospect of going to a Jewish summer camp, let alone in Israel, is becoming an unrealistic luxury for many Jewish teens.
In response to this reality, CTeen partnered with the Meromim Foundation last year to offer scholarships exclusive to CTeen’s Israel experiences. Following the tremendous success of last summer and with an eye on the future, they have opened the 2023 scholarship to teens attending all four summer trips: including CTeen Xtreme in the Western U.S. and their latest debut (coming summer 2023)—the Morocco/Israel Origin Trail. Additionally, this year’s scholarship is being offered to teens in any country worldwide.
In the seven years since CTeen launched its inaugural summer program in 2013, more than one thousand Jewish public school students have been impacted to live as proud Jews. Today, many of those alumni are getting married and establishing Jewish homes and the Meromim Foundation recognizes the trips’ influence, “We understand the power of youth and how important it is for them to have engaging Jewish experiences,” says Rabbi Bentzi Lipskier, “We are partnering with Merkos 302 and CTeen yet again because we have seen their tremendous impact and are hoping to create even more.”
“We founded CTeen based on the Rebbe’s ardent belief in the unique power of the youth,” says Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, Vice Chairman of Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch, “The Meromim Foundation shares our passion for bringing this vision to life and their partnership enables us to create immersive life-changing Jewish experiences for teenagers.”
Dedicated to ensuring that no teen is withheld from the powerful summer trips due to monetary struggles, CTeen is partnering with numerous other organizations to help reduce costs. For North American Jewish teens, CTeen is partnering with RootOne, an initiative that aims to lower the financial barrier of participating in immersive summer trips to Israel and invest in the educational quality of those experiences by offering a $3,000 voucher to Jewish public school teens. For participants in the CTeen Xtreme American trip, the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s One Happy Camper program is also helping alleviate costs by providing $700-$1,000 to first-time campers.
For Montreal High School students, a group of local Shluchim worked together to advocate that CTeen be included as a provider for the local CJA Federation Israel subsidy. The scholarship provides an additional $2,500 to any Montreal teen joining a trip to Israel, bringing the cost down to nearly nothing. Similar arrangements are being replicated in many other communities across North America.
On an international level, CTeeners in the United Kingdom can receive bursaries from UJIA, the local umbrella organization funding Israel teen travel. For all other countries, CTeen is actively working with an international funder to secure equivalent funding where RootOne vouchers are not available.
“All these incredible organizations, coupled with the additional scholarship by the Meromim Foundation, will ensure that no teen will be left behind due to financial considerations,” said Rabbi Nachman Rivkin, director of CTeen summer programs.”
Rabbi Avremel Zaltzman from Cobb County, GA, says, “What we have found with the grants that CTeen facilitated is that it’s a complete game changer. Meromim, RootOne and all other scholarships take the financial burden off parents and allow all teens access: no matter their financial situation.”
The scholarships are a significant step towards making Jewish summer programs accessible to all Jewish teens, regardless of their financial background. CTeen’s mission to empower Jewish youth and create life-changing experiences is more important than ever and with the help of these scholarships, more teenagers will have the opportunity to engage in these meaningful and enriching programs.
All three 22-day CTeen Israel programs, Heritage Quest (5 days in Poland, 17 days in Israel), Origin Trail (5 days in Morocco, 17 days in Israel), or Israel Journey (22 days in Israel alone), with an original price tag of $4,695 plus airfare, are now $695 plus airfare from NYC. The CTeen Xtreme trip (14 days from Denver to Los Angeles), originally $2,895 + domestic airfare, is now $895 or $1,195 + domestic airfare.
The Meromim scholarship is available until Tuesday, February 7. Shluchim, who are interested in securing a scholarship for a teen, can apply here.