JOFEE Fellowship Journeys: From Passion to Profession

JOFEE Fellowship Journeys: From Passion to Profession


I spent multiple years going through various different Jewish programs where the spaces were held for me to have transformative experiences. And now, as a JOFEE professional, it feels very important for me to be holding those spaces for others in the community so that they can have transformative experiences as well. The JOFEE Fellowship training helped solidify for me that I’m meant to be a Jewish educator. It was an amazing opportunity for us as emerging leaders to identify key strengths that allow us to be successful in the workplace and in community development I was able to pinpoint the strengths that I have… The talents and behaviors that most directly influenced our work and thought… To identify those as our biggest tools in doing our work well and beautifully, and in building the world that we want to see. One of the biggest lessons that I took away from the first JOFEE training was how to approach the world from a place of curiosity. And it is a lesson that I apply on a daily basis — not only to my professional life but my personal life as well. And so, when I take people out into nature for JOFEE programs, it’s just a collective experience of exploration and radical amazement. Because of JOFEE, I was able to turn my passion into a profession. It gave me the opportunity to bring my love of the outdoors, my commitment to social justice, and my passion for Judaism together in one place. I learned new ways to be able to help the families
that I work with on a daily basis to connect with Judaism. This has been a year of tremendous growth professionally and personally. Not only has my identity as a Jewish woman and as an environment enthusiast strengthened, but because of me Pearlstone feels confident to run a camp, and I’m super grateful to be able to be a part of that growth and that new beginning. My biggest accomplishment this year was internal education. People wanted me to hold Jewish, and I quickly realized that the best way to do that is for everyone to be
an informal Jewish educator. I really enjoyed that we are coming to an identity of ourselves as a Jewish farm, and that we are tapping into this ancient agricultural system and making it relevant. Planning the Hazon Food Conference as a JOFEE Fellow was
a huge milestone in my life. It was the biggest project I had ever been responsible for. But over time, momentum started building, and things started coming together. And pretty soon, I found myself at a five day conference with over 200 participants, over 60 presenters, over 90 sessions … and it was so successful. It was such a priceless experience, and one that I will never forget. Because of JOFEE, I learned that I have a voice and a power, and the world wants to see it. My name is Rachel Binstock. My name is Jacob Weiss. Hi, I’m Sarah! And I’m Miki! Becca Michael Nicole Jess Berlin and I am a JOFEE professional. And here I am now playing with baby goats and having them climb all over me …

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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