B’nai TELEM is a service-learning program for b’nai mitzvah youth in grades six and seven. Participants will be introduced to social justice issues and engage with people outside their immediate community and typical daily experiences.

Learning and reflection sessions will encourage participants to think critically about social justice issues from a Jewish perspective.

The B’nai TELEM program is centered on six community service experiences in a variety of non-profit settings that introduce participants to the TELEM program service tracks: Advocacy; Connecting Generations; Environmental Sustainability; Literacy; Poverty – Hunger and Homelessness; Special Needs.

B’nai TELEM groups generally meet during regular Hebrew School hours though service experiences may take place at different times.

The TELEM program for teens grades 8-12 offers participants the opportunity to dig deeper into social justice issues and to build relationships that make a difference in people’s lives. In this program model, participants volunteer at one service site over a sustained period of time, giving them the chance to build consistent and meaningful relationships with people at their service site. TELEM teens volunteer with their Jewish peers, enabling them to build a stronger Jewish identity through this shared experience. The TELEM curricula offer the chance to learn in more depth and to think critically about social justice issues from  a Jewish perspective.

TELEM programs are organized through area synagogue and temple high schools, day schools and youth groups.

Check the partner list to see if your synagogue or school has a program, or for more information contact Grace Farnan, TELEM Coordinator.

Jewish Partner Organizations


Congregation Agudath Achim, Taunton
Congregation Or Atid, Wayland
Congregation Shirat Hayam, Swampscott
Congregation Kerem Shalom, Concord
Temple Aliyah, Needham
Temple Beth Am, Framingham
Temple Beth Avodah, Newton
Temple Beth David, Westwood
Temple Beth Elohim, Wellesley
Temple Beth Shalom, Needham
Temple Beth Torah, Holliston
Temple Chayai Shalom
Temple Emanuel, Newton
Temple Emanu-El, Marblehead
Temple Isaiah, Lexington
Temple Israel, Natick
Temple Israel, Sharon
Temple Ohabei Shalom, Brookline
Temple Shir Tikva, Wayland
Temple Shir Tikvah, Winchester
Temple Sinai, Brookline
Temple Sinai, Sharon

Day Schools         

Gann Academy, Waltham
Jewish Community Day School, Watertown
The Rashi School, Dedham
Solomon Schechter Day School, Newton

TELEM Community Partners

CHAI South Area Social Action Collaboration
Jewish Teen Initiative of Greater Boston

Service Partners

(Partial List)

1550 Beacon St, Brookline
The Arbors, Canton
The Arbors, Stoughton
The Arbors, Taunton
Avery Crossing, Needham
Belmont SPORT, Belmont
Boston Nature Center, Boston
Boys’ and Girls’ Club, Dorchester
Boys’ and Girls’ Club, Newton
Brightside, Canton
Brightview Senior Living, Canton
Brockton Head Start, Brockton
Brookline Emergency Food Pantry, Brookline
Carriage House, Wayland
Charles River Center, Needham
Chestnut Park Assisted Living, Brighton
City Soil, Roslindale
Coleman House, Newton
Conway House, Taunton
Cornerstone, Canton
Curran School, Dedham
Family Promise, Natick
Family Table, Jewish Family and Children’s Service, Waltham
Framingham Head Start, Framingham
Hale Reservation, Westwood
Hastings House, Framingham
Headstart, Brockton
Hearth, Boston
Household Goods, Acton
Jackson Mann School, Allston
Jeremiah Project, Roxbury
JFCS Chai Works, Canton/Waltham
Life is Good Kids Foundation, Boston
Minute Man Arc, Concord
Natick Community Organic Farm, Natick
NEADS, Princeton
Needham Parks and Recreation, Needham
Newbridge on the Charles, Dedham
Orchard Cove, Canton
Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown
Rebuilding Together, Boston
The Residence at Five Corners, Easton
School on Wheels, East Bridgewater
Second Step, Newton
Simon Fireman Community, Randolph
Westfield Child Center, Brockton