Rising Voices

Learn more about the Rising Voices Fellowship, JWA's thought-leadership program for female-identified teens.
Album Cover for "If Not Now, When?" by Debbie Friedman

Inspired by Debbie Friedman: Building Inclusive Movements

by Maddy Pollack

I hope that contemporary feminists can learn from Debbie Friedman and bring people together through interactive art.

20th Anniversary Cover for "Stone Butch Blues "

Centering My Queer Ancestors' Stories

by Ellanora Lerner

Stone Butch Blues allowed me to hear my ancestors speak, and it gave me a new understanding of what it means to be queer.

Photo of Sarah Schenirer

Tracing the Roots of Jewish Women's Education

by Ellie Klibaner-Schiff

Sarah Schenirer started the revolution—that is still in process today—to create equal Torah learning opportunities for women.

Folded Road Map

Road Map to Combatting Injustice

by Mica Maltzman

The second pin on this road map is moving beyond research to action. I should use my voice to speak up; but I cannot speak for everyone. 

Topics: Activism, Education
Alice from Alice in Wonderland preparing to open the door with the key

Down the Rabbit Hole of My Disability

by Ilana Drake

I have a learning disability. It feels like I’m entering the nonsensical world of Wonderland when I try to get my school to understand that.

Topics: Schools
Google Result: Privilege (sounded out, /'priv(e)lij/)

An Unearned Feeling of Guilt: About My Privilege

by Hannah Landau

It's the evening before my final blog post draft is due, and I'm still not completely sure what to do with my privilege.

"Untitled" by Sonia Delaunay, 1917

Each Time I Enter the Synagogue: A Teen on Antisemitic Gun Violence

by Madeline Canfield

My reaction to antisemitic gun violence is not one of fear, but of alertness to a threat far more normalized for me than for my elders.

Google bike in front of Google campus in Palo Alto, California

Toppling the Tech Narrative: Examining Silicon Valley Privilege

by Dahlia Soussan

I shadowed at Lincoln High School in eighth grade, and what I saw in six hours challenged my entire perception of Silicon Valley.

Topics: Schools, Technology
Decorated stones and sentimental items gathered in memory of Michael

The Power I Don't Have

by Eleanor Harris

None of us had the power to save Michael, but we did have the power to come together as a community and make each other a little more whole.

Topics: Summer Camps
Student Sitting Behind Books

A Tutor's Privilege

by Ella Plotkin-Oren

Working as a tutor opened my eyes to a privilege I didn’t even know I had.

Topics: Education
Close-up photo of computer code.

What a Coding Program Taught Me about Privilege

by Ellie Klibaner-Schiff

As one of four white girls in my Girls Who Code Summer Immersion class of twenty, I was confronted by my privilege in a way that I'd never been before.

Topics: Activism, Technology
Lila Goldstein holding a sign that reads "For Sale: Marco Rubio"

Privilege after Parkland

by Lila Goldstein

How many other teenagers around the state of Florida, around the country, shared my bitterness and anger, but didn’t have the tools to be where I was then?

Topics: Protests, Schools
Sunrise over the Kinneret in Israel. Figure in the foreground on rocks.

"A Light unto the Nations": The Power of our Words

by Lilah Peck

My Judaism guides me to use my words in order to lead a mindful life of gratitude.

Topics: Prayer
DNA Double Helix

"Jewish DNA"

by Belle Gage

My aunt sent a tube to the DNA analyzing company, 23andMe. The results she received identified her as 99% Ashkenazi Jew.

Topics: Activism, Religion
Open book with flipping pages. Black background.

Confronting White Privilege: A Reflection on Affirmative Action

by Ari Fogel

As I learned more about what affirmative action really means for students, my worries turned into a sobering recognition of my privilege.

Pencil with sharpener resting on a notebook.

Magnet School

by Maddy Pollack

If tikkun olam is something that we believe in fully, then our work will not be complete until every student is empowered with an equitable education.

Four Gadna participants in Sde Boker.

Gadna

by Isabel Hoffman

I was en route to Gadna, a military simulation run by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) for camp groups, gap year programs, and high school semesters abroad.

United States Capital, featuring Christmas tree in foreground.

A Culture of Christmas

by Ellanora Lerner

What does it mean to live in a country that purports secularity but considers Christianity to be the default?

Checklist, checked boxes with a pink highlighter.

Checked Boxes

by Shoshanna Hemley

I’ve been told that, because I’m not white and because I’m queer, I don’t have to stress about college applications.

Neima Fax reading from the Torah.

The Aliyah Situation

by Neima Fax

That Simchat Torah, I saw the Torah not as something I had easy access to, but something generations of women had to fight to even touch.

Photograph of Persian Jewish man, sepia tone.

Airport Insecurity

by Sasha Azizi Rosenfeld

Everything about me screamed American Ashkenazi Jew except the middle name on my passport.

Topics: Family, Israel
Talmud opened to seder zera'im.

"Lo Bashamayim Hi": Reconciling Feminism and Halakha

by Dahlia Soussan

Talmud became a channel for me to develop and express my Jewish feminism.

Young woman standing next to brick wall, wearing ankle-length blue skirt with red striped pattern and a Vans shirt underneath a jean jacket. Signs photoshopped into the image next to the young woman in English and Hebrew read: "Please do not pass through our neighborhood in immodest clothes"

Wonder Woman's Hemline

by Lilah Peck

The length of your hemline doesn’t matter as long as you choose it for yourself and you accept those who choose differently.

Painting with the outline of a human figure. Grey background with overlapping square shapes. One contains another small outlined face that faces the outlined figure.

A Trip to Crown Heights

by Belle Gage

I was visiting Brooklyn, New York with a group of students in my Reform synagogue’s confirmation class. 

High school student standing in front of a brick wall. She is holding a protest sign that says "To forget a Holocaust is to be killed twice," attributed to Elie Wiesel.

On Emancipation Avenue

by Madeline Canfield

My friend wanted to get arrested, one morning in July, on the curb of the sidewalk along a street east of downtown Houston.

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