2014-03-19 / Columns

South Jersey Region BBYO tours the world


Representing Spain at SJR BBYO’s Taste of BBYO event were (from left), Ethan Levin, Andrew Quigley, and Tyler Apt from Re’ut BBYO. Representing Spain at SJR BBYO’s Taste of BBYO event were (from left), Ethan Levin, Andrew Quigley, and Tyler Apt from Re’ut BBYO. Italy, Thailand, England, Bulgaria, South Africa—these were just some of the countries represented at South Jersey Region’s “Taste of BBYO Night” on Sunday, Feb. 23. Over 130 teens came out to experience the cultures of countries that BBYO has a presence in. Chapters prepared food from nine different countries, including tea and cucumber sandwiches from England, red velvet cupcakes from South Africa, and strawberry-honey smoothies from Thailand.

“Taste of BBYO was an amazing event. It combined hanging out with friends on a Sunday night with learning about and ‘tasting’ all the different countries that BBYO is in!” said Hannah Hauptman, a senior at Eastern Regional High School.

Between trying new and exciting foods and playing a thrilling game of Coke and Pepsi, teens also had a chance to play small games from each country to learn about their pastimes and origins. All the countries represented—Switzerland, the UK and Ireland, South Africa, Turkey, Thailand, Bulgaria, Australia, Spain, Italy, and Israel—were the same ones represented at International Convention less than a month before. Although some aspects of BBYO are different in other countries, the same principles remain—to encourage more Jewish teens to have more meaningful Jewish experiences.

All profits raised from Taste of BBYO Night went towards BBYO’s International Service Fund, known as ISF. ISF works to ensure that BBYO is truly a global youth movement. Each region makes a pledge in order to ensure that teens from across the world can attend international conventions. One of BBYO’s primary goals is to bring together teens from around the world into one united youth group. Participants in BBYO are able to meet and form friendships with teens from different countries—an experience that is not found anywhere else.

“Thanks to ISF, I was able to meet teens from BBYO Bulgaria at my summer program. It allowed me to learn about different BBYO traditions in their country, but also the traditions that remain the same all over the world,” related Marisa Camacho, a junior at East High School.

Taste of BBYO Night was an opportunity for young people to eat tasty foreign foods and play some games, all while raising money to give teens from other countries the chance to experience BBYO for themselves.

BBYO’s initiative is to allow bonds of brotherhood and sisterhood to form, not only throughout the country, but also throughout the world. .

Jess Sklar is mazkirah and Jordan Gomer is mazkir for the South Jersey Region (SJR) BBYO. They handle communications for SJR BBYO.

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