BBG’s Impact

May 6, 2024
Maddie Kates

West Hartford, Connecticut, United States

Class of 2026

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When I attended IC 2024 down in Orlando, I realized just how strong of an impact BBYO can have. Seeing thousands of other Jewish teens just like me all in one room, singing the same songs, prayers, and cheers, I remembered just how much BBYO has changed me. Starting off as a shy 8th grader, and now blossoming into a leader of our chapter and a big part of my region, I felt proud to be Jewish and surrounded by these teens, so different yet similar to me. We all felt the same love for BBYO and wanted to expand it and make it a better organization. I want to work hard to make my chapter feel like a safe place where everyone can come and feel the same sense of security I felt when in that room. I want to make a difference and give everyone somewhere they feel they belong, where the weight of all other problems and challenges of our world melt away, and they see a friend after a long day and can just relax, and focus on the connection to all these other girls. I feel such a strong sense of belonging to BBYO that I’ve never felt anywhere else, and it is such an important thing for Jewish teens to have, especially with all the current events happening in our world. As my current chapter MIT Mom, it is beyond important to give every new or old chapter member the same experience and recruit new members to give them the same opportunity to belong. While some activities, like school or sports,  can feel cliquey or elite, it is BBGs who go out of their way to make sure everyone feels involved and equal that make the most difference to brighten someone’s day and keep them coming back. 

Maddie is a BBG from Connecticut Valley Region and has been a dancer for 13 years.

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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