VTeen is a state wide program that offers expanded opportunities for teen connection, leadership, friendships and creative Jewish experience.
This is a program of Jewish Communities of Vermont: coordinated by Living Tree Alliance Staff and generously made possible through support from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation.
Immersive Shabbat Experiences plus leadership building throughout the year
February 8 - 9
Winter Carnival and Shabbat Retreat Hanover, NH
Friday 5 pm: arrive at Hanover Rec Center to drop off your bags and sleeping bag and meet everyone. Together we will walk to Kol HaEmek for Friday night Shabbat services followed by dinner at Hillel with a special program with Hillel students. Return to the Rec Center for games and fun.
Saturday 9 am - 11 am: Leadership Training
Saturday 11am - 12pm: Tour the Dartmouth Campus
Saturday noon to 3pm: Volunteer at the Occum Party - Dartmouth’s Winter Carnival
The weekend costs $25. Scholarships available. To Register contact Sephirah: firstname.lastname@example.org, 603-387-8697'
Come for the whole thing or the part that most appeals to you
What to bring
sleeping bag, pillow, pajamas, toiletries, change of clothes for Saturday, warm clothes for being outside, layers, jacket, snowpants, hat, gloves and ice skates if you have them.
Leaders of the February event: Melanie Grubman, Sephirah Oshkello, Melissa Herman, Director of Education at Kol Ha’Emek
April 5 - 7 - Teen Retreat at 3rd Vermont Jewish Community Summit
Build Community together and further learn leadership skills. Teen programming and special condos for the teens
Join the leadership team and bring your ideas to plan the April event. Looks great on a college application. Meetings monthly via telecommunication.
First meeting: January 24 7pm-8pm
contact Sephirah to discuss eligibility for joining the team
All Programs co-led by Melanie Grubman and Sephirah Stacey Oshkello
Kohenet Stacey Sephirah Oshkello is the co-founder of Living Tree Alliance, and runs the all state VTeen program for Jewish Communities of Vermont. She is an educator, healthy lifestyle coach, community leader, and nurturing mother, who fosters transformational experiences that help create a joyful life. Stacey Sephirah organizes community festivals and education programs for Living Tree Alliance that integrate seasonal New England homesteader practices with the Hebrew calendar and the ancient teachings of Jewish tradition. In 2017, she was ordained as a Kohenet - Hebrew Priestess with the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute, where she enhanced her ability to create rituals connected to tradition, and connect Jewish stories to the earth allowing them to be tangible to all people. Sephirah loves integrating Jewish traditional practices into a holistic lifestyle amongst family and community, that is relevant to our modern times. The programs and events she leads, integrate connection to self, community, earth, ancestors, and Divinty. She is committed to building Living Tree Alliance as a place that is redefining community, regenerating land, and revitalizing Jewish culture.
Melanie Grubman has served as program founder, director and coordinator for multiple nonprofits creating and managing outreach events for county wide social change programs. Using her creativity and her degrees in government and education, she uses grassroots organizing techniques to develop and spread new programs to schools and organizations. Most notably she piloted the Alameda Safe Routes to Schools program, a multi-tiered programmatic approach now providing safety and environmental education to over 100 schools. Melanie is a trained Waldorf teacher and professional family educator who combines her expertise of bridging spirituality and developmentally appropriate education with community building techniques. Melanie has recently completed a mentorship program with Wilderness Torah and has launched successful chavurah programs for Chochmat HaLev in Berkeley California and at Ohavi Zedek in Burlington, VT. Over the last decade in her community engagement positions for congregations, she has developed strategies to engage families in non-traditional learning and built up congregational participation and volunteerism. As co-founder of Sukkot on the Farm, she has driven its vision and continues to attract over 200 families to LTA’s signature festivals. In addition, to running programs for Living Tree Alliance and JCVT’s VTeen program, Melanie develops family programs for synagogues and alternative Jewish Rites of Passage for Jewish teens and their parents.