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Sofia Gardenswartz

2017-2018 Rising Voices Fellow Sofia Gardenswartz
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Sofia Gardenswartz, 2017-2018 Rising Voices Fellow

Sofia Gardenswartz is a senior at Francis Parker School in San Diego, California, where she can often be found on a surfboard in the Pacific. When she's not engaged in her passion of creative writing, she runs Serving Spoons, a nonprofit organization which delivers healthy, home-cooked meals to families in need. Sofia is a company member of ImpACT on Stage, an organization which uses live performance to spark discussions in schools about bullying, inclusion, and social justice issues. She's an ultimate frisbee player, an avid reader of The Atlantic, and a caretaker of a Border Collie named Theo.

Blog posts

Women's March on Washington, 2017

Authentic Community Organizing, From Food to Feminism

From dining on Mexican-fusion cuisine at Macho’s, to learning about the intersectional practices of San Diego’s large Mexican-Jewish population, my identity has largely been shaped by San Diego’s multiculturalism.

Topics: Feminism, Food
Cantor Alisa Pomerantz-Boro

Blazing a Trail, One Note at a Time

I’ve always considered words to hold a certain power. As the old saying goes, “the pen is mightier than the sword.” So, when I was sitting in the front row as my little brother was called to the Torah for the first time as a bar mitzvah, something struck me about the language of the event. Usually, the English translation in the siddurim (prayer books) follows the literal Hebrew on the opposite page, reading “God” for “Adonai” and “He” for “Hu.” But in the readings that day, God was genderless. The biblical Hebrew that has been passed down for millennia wasn’t changed, but the English translation avoided the use of any pronouns that would invoke gender. 

Fixer Upper Logo

Does Fixer Upper Need Fixing Up?

HGTV’s Fixer Upper is my guilty pleasure. I could watch the iconic married duo Chip and Joanna “Jo” Gaines renovate houses for hours. They take run-down homes in Waco, Texas, and turn them into something straight off of Pinterest or Etsy. But while the show is certainly entertaining, I take issue with some of the more subliminal messages the show portrays.

Sofia Gardenswartz in "Serving Spoons" Apron

Double-Bound

I am the President of a nonprofit, Serving Spoons, that prepares and delivers healthy, home-cooked meals to families in need. I accepted this leadership position nearly five years ago, and though I expected to encounter challenges due to my age, I felt confident I could convince the other industry professionals to take me seriously if I demonstrated maturity, responsibility, and commitment to my organization. Yet one of the greatest challenges, as I soon discovered, wasn’t my mere fourteen years, but rather my identity as a female.

Topics: Food, Volunteers
Sofia Gardenswartz with Friend Diana

Dialogue with Diana

October 2016 was a difficult month. It was the month that Donald Trump started to become a truly scary candidate to me. It was also the month in which my family lost one of our beloved dogs to cancer. Amidst all this, my family was hosting a Chinese exchange student, Diana, in our home for a couple weeks. She was incredibly supportive and understanding as my family grappled with these tumultuous events.

Rising Voices Fellow Sofia Gardenswartz Reading Grace Paley

Paley’s Power on the Daily

Last year, my AP English class read the short prose poem “Mother” by Grace Paley. What struck me the most was its mundane nature. This is a characteristic of nearly all of Paley’s work; she wrote in detail about the daily lives of women—a topic that, when she was writing in the 1940’s, was viewed as tangential to the “real” work of male authors writing bestsellers like The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger) or The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton). 

Topics: Schools, Poetry
Stock Image of Pasta Dish

Food for Thought

I love food. I don’t think that’s (in fact, I really hope it’s not) a divisive statement. But I’m not only a proud foodie, I’m also an avid chef. 

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Sofia Gardenswartz." (Viewed on June 22, 2018) <https://jwa.org/blog/author/sofia-gardenswartz>.

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