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JTConnect to Host Conference on Antisemitism for Teens and Parents

Emanuel Synagogue. Photo credit: Ronni Newton (we-ha.com file photo)

Amy Spitalnick, CEO of Jewish Council of Public Affairs will provide the keynote address and state Sen. Saud Anwar will join the Interfaith Panel at the JTConnect Conference on Antisemitism in West Hartford on Nov. 5.


Jewish Teen Learning Connection (JTConnect), a nonprofit that offers Jewish teens educational programs and leadership experiences, will help teens and parents address the recent rise in antisemitism, and learn how to respond to bigotry and hate, during a one-day conference on Nov. 5 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., at The Emanuel Synagogue in West Hartford.

The conference is being generously supported by two major funders, the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford, and the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford.

Amy Spitalnick, CEO of Jewish Council of Public Affairs in New York, will serve as conference keynote speaker, followed by a series of interactive educational workshops led by local Jewish communal organizations including an interfaith panel featuring Connecticut state Sen. Saud Anwar.

“Education and advocacy must be taught together to create change,” said Caroline Poland, Executive Director of JTConnect. “Our conference will create a supportive environment where teens will be inspired to learn from their peers and our partners and be equipped to proactively tackle all forms of hatred.”

Conference Offers Interactive Workshops

Teens will sharpen their leadership skills as they grapple with complex issues and engage confidently in complex dialogue through a series of interactive presentations including: Jewish Peoplehood, What is Antisemitism and Anti-Israel Beliefs, and The Israeli/Palestinian Conflict; Standing Up Against Hatred; Words to Action Program: Proud to Be Jewish in High School and College; Navigating Disagreement on Israel as a Teenager; Politically Active Students On and Off Campus; Supporting your Student in the Event of Antisemitic Targeting (for parents); Faith Based Responses to Hate and Taking Civic Action.

“As a convener of Jewish teen and families in the Greater Hartford area, JTConnect is excited to open this meaningful community conversation,” said Poland.

The conference fee is $18.00 per person and includes a Kosher lunch; scholarship assistance is available. To register, visit TEEN CONFERENCE ON ANTISEMITISM REGISTRATION (wufoo.com). For more information, contact Caroline Poland at [email protected].

The conference’s co-sponsor and keynote is Jewish Council for Public Affairs. Co-sponsors and Presenters are The Anti Defamation League; HaNer Region of USY; Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Hartford; and Co-sponsors are Merkaz, program of the Jewish Federation of Greater Fairfield County and United Jewish Federation of Stamford, New Canaan, and Darien serving Greater Fairfield County. Partners and Presenters are Voices of Hope and Project Shema; Partners are Mandell Jewish Community Center of Greater Hartford; Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven; Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts; The Emanuel Synagogue of West Hartford; Congregation Beth Israel of West Hartford; Young Israel of West Hartford; Beth El Temple of West Hartford; Congregation Beth David of West Hartford; Farmington Valley Jewish Congregation, Emek Shalom of Simsbury; Temple Sinai of Newington; Temple Beth Hillel of South Windsor; Kol Haverim of Glastonbury; Beth Shalom B’nai Israel of Manchester, and BBYO, NUTSY. 


Serving more than 300 local teens each year, JTConnect provides a rich educational experience and social community for Jewish teens to develop a strong Jewish identity, enhance their understanding and commitment to their Jewish heritage and traditions, and prepare them to lead meaningful Jewish lives.

JTConnect has four pillar programs: Jewish Learning & Leadership, Social Action Projects, Yearlong Teen Philanthropy Programs, and Social Events. The nonprofit offers meaningful opportunities for teens to come together to learn, build relationships and community, create positive change in the world, and celebrate Jewishly throughout the year. JTConnect’s classes, programs and events are enriching touch points along a young person’s Jewish journey with programming that evolves with the needs of our community.

To learn more, visit https://jtconnect.org/.

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