When your Birthright Israel LA Way trip ends, you can’t take the falafel home with you, but you can hold onto all those new friendships. Kahn Fellowships take you on a year-long journey and provide you with the resources you need to create your own Jewish community and experiences in Los Angeles. But you don’t have to go it alone: Outstanding Birthright Israel trip leaders (madrichim) stay on as BRIdge Fellows to continue supporting you, even after that falafel in your luggage goes bad.
Kahn Fellowship Overview
You spent ten days in Israel, then traveled fourteen hours by plane to get home. As your feet hit the ground at LAX, you’re happy to be home, but you wonder: How can I keep riding this wave? This newfound connection to my Jewish identity, to the Jewish community, to the friends I made?
The answer: A Kahn Fellowship.
Kahn Fellowships enable passionate Birthright Israel LA Way participants like yourself to keep the momentum going once you get home. As a Fellow, you’ll be provided with the training and resources you need to create programing that connects people from your Birthright Israel trip to one another and to the Jewish community of Los Angeles.
After the application and acceptance process, you will be invited to serve a year-long term during which you’ll receive training, informal education, and mentorship. You’ll continue building meaningful relationships with friends from your bus, while also creating programming for the wider young adult and Birthright Israel population in LA.
You can work solo or you can partner with other Fellows to ideate community events in five different categories: Shabbat and Holidays, Jewish or Israel Education, Arts and Culture, Service and Social Justice, and the Culture of Giving. A Kahn Fellowship invites you to explore what it means for a program or an event to “feel Jewish,” because there’s no right way!
As a Kahn Fellow, in addition to creating your own programming, you are invited to and provided with the means to attend local Jewish community events, and to participate in immersive Jewish experiences.
If you consider yourself an exceptional Birthright Israel participant with leadership potential and a passion for Jewish experiences, we encourage you to apply for the Kahn Fellowship.
After playing a major role in the transformative experience that is Birthright Israel LA Way, The Jewish Federation carefully selects a handful of outstanding Birthright Israel trip leaders (madrichim) to serve as BRIdge Fellows, tasked with providing Kahn Fellows from their own trips with individualized attention and mentorship.
Over the course of twelve months, BRIdge Fellows work with The Jewish Federation to continue discovering how young Jews want to connect to the Jewish community. They work with Kahn Fellows to help brainstorm programs, and encourage them to search for their own definition of what it means to have a Jewish experience.
Just as they did while serving as madrichim on Birthright Israel trips, BRIdge Fellows help their Birthrighters — both Kahn fellows and others – to continue exploring their identities and creating community long after their Birthright Israel trip has come to an end.
“This fellowship has meant the absolute world to me. Not only has it given me a fantastic avenue to strengthen a reconnection with my Jewish faith and culture that began on Birthright Israel, but it has ensured that, though we work across a massive city, the friends I made on this trip are never too far away to rehash old memories and create new ones.”
— Adam Rosenthal, Cohort 2016/2017
“The Kahn Fellowship gave me a chance to build a Jewish community I was missing here in Los Angeles. What I didn’t expect to learn is that my definition of “community” could be so varied. Community can be like where I grew up, where everyone knows everyone, but it also be a smaller group of like-minded people who I share similar values, traditions and perspectives with. I’ve enjoyed exploring the greater Jewish community of Los Angeles (including a recent favorite – East Side Jews’ Bagel Crawl!) through the Kahn Fellowship, and look forward to continuing my involvement beyond the Kahn Fellowship as well.”
— Kayla Masnek, Cohort 2017/2018