BBYO | AZA & BBG | International Convention | Summer

This December, thousands of Jewish teens around the world will celebrate Global Shabbat—BBYO’s biggest Shabbat experience yet.

Each year, Holocaust survivors, business professionals, faith leaders, cross-cultural activists, politicians, and entrepreneurs join with Alephs and BBGs worldwide to share inspiring stories and take part in a meaningful, teen-led Shabbat experience. This year’s Global Shabbat program theme, “Let There Be Light,” will be embraced and elevated around the world through a diverse array of thoughtful programming designed to bring the community together around the lights of Shabbat.

Featured Gamechanger Guests and Partners

Check out some of the amazing guests and partners participating in BBYO's Global Shabbat 2018 worldwide.

Andrea Bolender

Treasurer, Holocaust Museum and Tolerance Center of Nassau County
Great Neck, NY

Stephen Brickman

Songleader & Music Educator
Boston, MA

Nevida Butler

Former Executive Director, Ecumenical Hunger Program
Los Gatos, CA

Rabbi Micah Caplan

Spiritual Leader at Congregation Or Tzion
Scottsdale, AZ

Racquel Chariah

Exec. Coordinator, Beautiful Me
Great Neck, NY

Rabbi Serena Eisenberg

Regional Director, American Jewish Committee of Northern California
Great Neck, NY

Paul Galan

Speaker & Holocaust Survivor
Chicago, IL

Carlos Galindo-Elvira

Arizona Regional Director for Anti-Defamation League
Scottsdale, AZ

Marty Haberer

Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix
Scottsdale, AZ

Azra Hussain

Co-Founder and President of the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Arizona
Scottsdale, AZ

Mariela Icicson

Educational Councilor, Healthy Development Dept., Government of Buenos Aires City
Buenos Aries, Argentina

Paula Joffe

Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Southern New Jersey
Cherry Hill, NJ

Chris Katulka

Assistant Director of North American Ministries for The Friends of Israel
Cherry Hill, NJ

Luke Levine

Young Jewish Transgender Activist
London, United Kingdom

Farshad Fani Marvasti

Physician Leader, Medical Educator, Health Coach and Author
Scottsdale, AZ

Phil Mastrocola

Grace Baptist Church Homeless Outreach Coordinator
Los Gatos, CA

Bill Peduto

Mayor of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA

Jake Price

Senior Programming Associate, Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity
Cleveland, OH

Reverend Carol Reynolds

United Church of Christ (Scottsdale Congregational UCC)
Scottsdale, AZ

Rabbi Isaiah Rothstein

Rabbi-in-Residence, Hazon and Beíchol Lashon
Danbury, CT

Pamela Schuller

Inclusion Advocate and Stand-up Comic
Denver, CO

Rabbi Daniel Septimus

CEO of Shalom Austin and Former Grand Aleph Godol
Austin, TX

Clare Stern

Executive Director of Kansas City Interfaith Youth Alliance and Faith Always Wins
Kansas City, MO

Daniel Storrow

Jewish Stand-up Comic
Los Angeles, CA

Laurie Strongin

CEO & Founder, Hope for Henry Foundation
Rockville, MD

BBYO Global Shabbat Highlights

Last year, we brought the community together like never before. More than 500 local BBYO chapters in 20 countries participated in Global Shabbat.

Buenos Aires, Argentina | Diana Wang, President of Generaciones de la Shoa

Richmond, VA | Featuring Dr. Timothy Snyder at the Virginia Holocaust Museum

London, England | Community Havdallah

Memphis, TN | With the Muslim Student Association, Facing History and Ourselves

Edmonton, AB | Featuring Interfaith Clergy Forum

St. Louis, MO | Featuring Storytelling from Local Holocaust Survivors

Orlando, FL | Featuring Representative Amy Mercado at Chocolate Kingdom

Winnipeg, MB | Coffee House Havdallah at Forth Café

Minsk, Belarus | Shabbaton Featuring Hillel and Netzer

Denver, CO | Featuring Habitat for Humanity at the University of Denver

Izmir, Turkey | Community Shabbat Dinner

Find Events Near You

Watch Global Shabbat events pop up all over the world, and while you're at it find one near you. Events will start popping up in November. If you want to get ahead of the curve, keep scrolling down and start planning yours!


Making meaningful moments for Global Shabbat will require some planning. Take a look through the questions and resources listed below to spark ideas and ensure you didn't forget anything.
If you're new to Global Shabbat, be sure to read over this Global Shabbat one-pager, which will provide context about the purpose of the initiative and what events have looked like in the past.

If you still have questions after reading through the steps, that's totally cool. Feel free to contact your International Sh'lichim for planning support. Don't worry, we've got your back.

Step 0: Learn

Before you dive into the planning process, be sure to learn what's important to the success of your event. Review the goals and parameters of the initiative you're working toward, and understand key opportunities for innovation to elevate your experience from good to WOW.

Understand Event Goals, Parameters, and Opportunities

  • What is the purpose of this initiative?

  • How can you maximize creativity and innovation in working toward stated goals?

  • How can this effort be layered into your programming calendar to enhance your funnels?

Review Objectives and Define Success

  • What does success look like for this experience (including metrics tied to program engagement, quality, innovation/risk, etc.)?

  • How will achieve that success?

Step 1: Ideate

Once you clearly understand the task at hand, IDEATE together with teen and staff leadership to build a unique experience that will best serve your community's needs within the context of the initiative. Do a community mapping exercise, clarify key responsibilities, and establish ambitious (and attainable!) goals.

Map Your Assets

  • What are the unique opportunities (and challenges) afforded by your community - including people, places, experiences, etc. - and how can you take full advantage of them to elevate your event?

Define Leadership Roles

  • What responsibilities are key to the success of this experience, and how will you divide the work (among specific teens and staff) to define expectations and share the load, while also leveraging individual skills?

Set SMART Goals

  • What specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals will enable you achieve your stated objectives to maximize success?

Step 2: Strategize

With a clear vision to guide you, take time to STRATEGIZE everything you'll need to enable success. Solidify basic logistics, design your program budget, seek out partnerships, outline a clear marketing strategy and swag, designs, all while further elevating your program plan to produce a truly 'high res' experience.

Confirm the Basics

  • What are the key Who, What, When, Where and Why components of your event?

  • What program plan will you use to drive progress toward your desired outcomes?

Elevate Your Outline

  • How will you push your event concept beyond the status quo to build an experience that is as inclusive as possible and that will defy all expectations?

Create a Budget

  • How can you get creative to maximize your experience while minimizing dollars required?

  • Where might you apply for additional funding to go above and beyond for your program?

Identify and Engage Target Partners

  • Considering the nature of your event, what local/national organizations can you engage as community, program, and/or brand partners?

  • How can you leverage parents, alumni, and other stakeholders to help?

Develop an Action Plan

  • What steps are required to turn your program idea into a reality?

  • What tasks and support are needed to make that happen, and along what timeline?

Define Your Marketing and Social Media Strategies

  • How will you leverage your network using all available communication channels to promote your event far and wide?

  • Who will own each touchpoint, and along what timeline?

Determine Pre/During/Post Swag Offerings

  • What relevant, sophisticated, and desirable swag will you offer before/during/after your event to surprise and delight your guests?

  • Where are there opportunities to bulk order items to keep costs low?

Step 3: Hustle

Good things come to those who HUSTLE. Use branded templates and an all-in approach to promote your event early and often. Create smart online systems to stramline registration. Dig deeper to recruit more teens across all social circles, and make sure the press (and the Order!) hear about what you have planned.

Prep Marketing Materials

  • How can you leverage (and customize) available promotional items to build major buzz about your event through a variety of digital, print, and live sharing platforms?

Launch Online Registration

  • How will you use BBYO's online registration portal to promote your event and encourage pre-registration for planning purposes?

  • What other fun information could you collect to inform surprise-and-delight opportunities?

Deploy Your Marketing and Social Media Plan

  • How can you activate your recruitment plan in a way that builds real FOMO among your target audience, and what exciting incentives can you offer to encourage hustling toward pre-registration?

Engage the Press

  • How can you pitch the community impact of your event (to elevate BBYO's brand) in a way that will attract local/national media to take note and either attend or cover the experience?

Celebrate Internally

  • What information can you share about your event to help BBYO build a strong global narrative touting the reach and impact of our Movement's most influential programs?

Step 4: Execute

As you gear up for the big day, get ready to EXECUTE. Send out final reminders, walk through the event with your steering committee, prep supplies and swag for distribution, and BBYO-ify your venue. Steward prospects (and members) with intention, and surprise and delight your guests to leave a lasting impression.

Confirm Final Logistics

  • What unanswered questions remain, and how will you address them?

  • How can you use final pre-event reminders and confirmation messages to enhance overall buzz throughout your network?

Prepare the Leadership Team

  • What program moments should be scripted in advance (versus free form), and how should leadership team members plan to handle any issues as they arise?

Transform Your Space

  • How can you use branding and signage, as well as lighting, A/V, risers or other fun seating options, reserved VIP areas, and other venue elements to bring your space to life and enhance its fullness?

Steward Guests from Start to Finish

  • What expectations can you set and systems can you put in place to easily identify prospects (and under-active members) to ensure that all new attendees are well taken care of from the time they arrive to when they leave?

Leave a Lasting Impression

  • What fun surprises, snacks, and/or other program enhancements can you offer to ensure all attendees leave eager for more BBYO?

  • How will you share upcoming event information so everyone knows what's next?

Step 5: Retain

Take advantage of the shared energy and momentum from your event while it's fresh to make sure attendees keep coming back for more. Coordinate an individualized follow-up plan to gather input to inform future programs, say a heartfelt thanks to all involved, and close out the MRIHA model by making the Ask!

Collect Feedback

  • How can you use technology and/or individualized outreach to gather input from prospects and other attendees to help improve your community's WOW programs in the future?

Say Thank You

  • How can you customize available branded templates to personalize your follow-up outreach to all key guest segments (prospects, members, parents, partners, stakeholders, etc.)?

Make the Ask

  • How can you coordinate targeted 'Ask' outreach to invite all prospect attendees to join BBYO in a timely and effective manner?


Pre-Event Marketing

You know an event is going to be successful when you see it everywhere. Utilize these tools and templates to get the word out about your event.

Share Square

Blast this image on all of your social media channels and be sure your friends share it on their personal accounts. Add your event information in the caption of the image.


Profile Picture

Let your friends know you'll be at Global Shabbat with this awesome profile picture frame.

Update Yours

Customizable Flyer (w/ Guest)

Share the details about your event with this customizable flyer template. This flyer includes a space to upload a headshot for a special guest. Hang these flyers at all of your local hang out spots.
Size: 8.5'x11''


Customizable Flyer (w/o Guest)

Share the details about your event with this customizable flyer template. Hang these flyers at all of your local hang out spots.
Size: 8.5'x11''



Hang the official Global Shabbat poster all over your city to create buzz and excitement. This poster is also available in a customizable version to add your basic event details.
Size: 11''x17'' or 24''x36''



Utilize this letterhead when making formal asks to community partners or guests to join your event. If you're an overachiever, you can put all of your official Global Shabbat program outlines in this document.


Customizable Promotion Slips

Customize them, cut them up, and hand them out to all of your friends at school, practice, clubs, and more to make sure everyone knows they're invited to your Global Shabbat.


Cover Photo

Make your Facebook event and personal social media profile look sharp with this event cover photo.


Header and Footer

When sending your targeting email blasts to your friends, parents, prospects, and community members pop-in these headers and footers.


Customizable Postcard Invite

Everyone loves getting something in the mail that feels personal. Reach out to your community with this customizable postcard.


Photo Watermark

Drop this watermark on your photos to promote your event on social media!


Event Environment Enhancements

Go all out to make your Global Shabbat space feel special and memorable. Be sure to order these items at least two weeks before your event to avoid any rush fees.

Welcome Board

Place this board outside of your event entrance so everyone knows they're in the right place.

Suggested vendor: Vistaprint
Instructions: Order from Vistaprint (or any local print shop) a 22”x28” full-color
foam core board.
Ballpark price: $40


Vinyl Banner

Place this banner at the heart of your event. Be sure it's visible for any special photo moments.

Suggested vendor: Echod Graphics
Instructions: Select vinyl banners > 13 oz. vinyl banner > 4’Hx8’W. Depending on your space add grommets or pockets for hanging. Grommets are recommended every two feet and work with command hooks. Pockets are great if you already have a banner stand. Upload artwork after you order and be sure to get a proof.
Ballpark price: $50


Step and Repeat

Order a step and repeat to make everyone feel like a VIP. Bring additional props and throw a red carpet in front of the step and repeat to really go big.

Suggested vendor: Echod Graphics
Instructions: Select vinyl banners > 13 oz. vinyl banner > 8’Hx10’W or 8'Hx8'W > 0 grommets, Pockets on top and bottom only (no hems). Upload artwork after you order and be sure to get a proof. Buy a stand for your step and repeat here.
Ballpark price: $100



Plaster every wall of your event with this poster. If a step and repeat is not in your budget, print out a few dozen of these posters to make a photo wall.

Order from Vistaprint (or similar
printing company) a 11’’x17” full-color print
on card stock paper or print at local office.
Ballpark price: $1/print


Hand Washing Station Sign

Suggested vendor: Echod Graphics
Order from Echod Graphics (or any local print shop) a 22”x24” full-color
foam core board.
Ballpark price: $40


Shabbat Shalom Sign

Suggested vendor: Echod Graphics
Order from Echod Graphics (or any local print shop) a 22”x24” full-color
foam core board.
Ballpark price: $40


Backup Sign-In Sheet

We recommend that your event sign-in be online through a form, but we know things happen. Maybe your venue doesn't have WiFi or the sign-in link isn't working. Whatever the case may be, print out a few dozen copies of this sign-in form to ensure you capture the information of everyone at your event.


Customizable Program Book

Build a beautiful program book to place on all of your guests seats featuring an evening schedule, special honors, and more.
Size: 8.5''x11''


Table Runner

Suggested Vendor: Totally Promotional
Instructions: Select one of the 'best sellers' and find a size that works for your budget. Upload the AZA and BBG seal or BBYO logo for the front.
Ballpark price: $30/item


Quotes & Values Signage

Bring this year’s theme, Let There Be Light, to life by decorating your event space with this collection of notable quotes from some of history’s greatest gamechangers.


Build Your Shabbat Box

Be sure you have all of the supplies you need to run a Shabbat. Many of these general Judaic pieces can be borrowed from family members or synagogues if you ask, but feel free to order a set for your chapter too! Be sure to order these items at least two weeks before your event to avoid any rush fees.

Challah Cover

Suggested vendor: Rush Order Tees
Instructions: Upload artwork and order a 14'x14' bandana. Try ordering an assortment of colors to enhance your space.
Ballpark price:


Custom Kippot

Suggested vendor: Skullcap Co.
Instructions: Add the AZA or BBYO seals or BBYO logo to some custom made kippot for the big weekend. Minimum order of 60. These take 2-4 weeks to produce.

Ballpark price: $2.50/item


Hand Washing Cup

Price: $24


Tzedakah Box

Price: $15


Kiddush Cup

Price: $15


Havdallah Kit

Price: $59


Tea Lights

Price: $15


Friday Night Shabbat Candles

Price: $12


Candle Holders

Price: $20


Program Resources

About Global Shabbat (One Sheet)

Learn the basics of Global Shabbat and how you can start planning an event to 'WOW' your community.


Program Framing Script

Global Shabbat makes us feel like a Movement because it's happening in hundreds of cities around the world. Use this script to open and close your events, so participants feel a part of something bigger.


Friday Night Shabbat Blessings and Prayers for Israel

Place this booklet on your Shabbat dinner tables to guests can follow along with the beautiful prayers of Shabbat.


Havdallah Blessing Cards

Use this Havdallah Card so everyone can participate in the prayers! Havdallah is best when you can hear everyone's voice.


Inviting and Hosting Gamechanger Guests In Your Community

Part of what makes Global Shabbat so special is the amazing guests brought in to enhance the evening. Learn how to invite a gamechanger guest to your event.


Interfaith and Cross-Cultural Shabbat Program Starters

We encourage chapters and communities to bring the theme of Global Shabbat to life by sharing experiences with interfaith, cross-cultural, and/or vulnerable populations in the community. Get some ideas for how to bridge communities together.


Inductions Certificate

If you are inducting any gamechangers (special guests) into AZA or BBG at your Global Shabbat experience, print out an official certificate to give them during or after the ceremony.


Inductions Script

Use this script for the honorary inductions ceremony for AZA and BBG.


Let There Be Light: Resource Guide

Get program ideas for how to bring to life this year's Global Shabbat theme: Let There Be Light.


Jewish Enrichment Guide for Shabbat

This guide is intended to serve as a resource to enrich Shabbat experiences with additional Jewish content and ideas.


Interfaith Prayer Service and Dialogue

This guide will provide a moving Global Shabbat service experience that creates a time and space for safe and productive dialogue with teens from other religious backgrounds.


Post-Event Follow-Up

Thank the people who made your event happen and invite everyone to come back for your next community event!

Thank You Notes

Don't forget to thank all of the people, partners and planners who helped make your event possible. A handwritten note means the world.

Instructions: Order from FedEx (or similar
printing company) a 7’’x10” full-color print
on card stock paper.
Ballpark price: $2/print


See You Next Time Cards

Hand these out at the end of your event to invite your friends to the next big thing (hint: Spring Kickoff or Winter Convention). These are customizable for you to share information about your next event.

Instructions: Order from Vistaprint (or similar
printing company) a 3.5"x2" full-color business card.
Ballpark price: $10 for set


Local Press Release Template

Want to share the news about your local or regional Global Shabbat event? Edit this customizable press release template to showcase your program and send out to local media contacts ASAP. Share the success of your Global Shabbat experience and make sure to tag @bbyoinsider on social, too, so we can help spread the word!



Share all of your Kickoff posts with the hashtag #BBYOKickoff to showcase all of the incredible events happening around the world. Maybe if you're lucky you'll get a shout out from @BBYOInsider.