Every year, Bnei Akiva North East hosts a shabbaton called Kenes Sniffim; a student leadership gathering for all the high school leaders from different branches of Bnei Akiva throughout New York, New Jersey and Boston. Representatives from Woodmere, Great Neck, Scarsdale, Riverdale, New Rochelle, Young Israel of Teaneck, Rinat Yisrael Teaneck and Boston were present. As a movement that is for youth led by youth, this shabbaton is essential in providing youth leaders with the tools to successfully run programming in their communities. This year’s Kenes took place in New Jersey, Shabbat Terumah, February 8-10.
The theme this year was “Captivate. Empower. Lead.” Each of these three words was presented in an innovative session that shed new light unto the word and applications for today’s youth. The different sniffim (branches) were able to interact with each other, speak about their struggles and successes, about the ideology of Bnei Akiva as a religious Zionist youth movement, how it affects their lives and how the movement can make an impact in the community at large. The Kenes was very successful and it will be exciting to see the student leaders take what they learned and bring it back to lead their sniffim.