Just what does inclusion mean to you?
That was the question posed by the Yachad Youth Leadership Council (YYLC) last month in their “Lights, Camera, Take Action!” video contest.
As part of the competition, Yachad members and the Jewish community at large were invited to submit a short video describing what the term meant to them. More than a dozen individuals and teams from across the world, including Yachad chapters in Boston, Florida, Chicago and Israel, submitted a video. The videos were then posted to Yachad’s Facebook page where Facebook users could “like” the video. The creator of the video with the most “likes” wins an iPad and has their video used for Yachad promotions.
“The whole idea was to find ways to get people talking about inclusion in places like Facebook where individuals already are,” explained Rebecca Schrag, director of school and community programming for Yachad and the supervisor for YYLC. YYLC is made up of dedicated high school students from across the United States who help implement Yachad programming in their area.
Entries included an answer in Claymation, a rap to the theme song of “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” an original song and a reunion featuring several members of the 2012 Yad B’Yad, Yachad’s summer program. Other videos, like the one from Yachad member Jonathan Spiller, took a different tact. Spiller created a heartfelt message of his own experience within Yachad.
“The enthusiastic response to ‘Lights, Camera, Take Action!’ and the genuineness of the videos communicates far more effectively and beautifully the positive, mutual benefits of inclusion,” explained Dr. Jeffrey Lichtman, international director of Yachad/ The National Jewish Council for Disabilities.
The competition was created by Hannah Tessel, a senior at Mayanot and president of the YYLC, and Shira Levie, an 11th grader at Frisch and member of YYLC, with support from the rest of the council.
“Everyone scrolls through their [Facebook] newsfeed and through that we can spread the message of inclusion,” explained Levie.
Here are some of our favorites:
But check them out here and make sure to like your favorite!
“The winner gets the iPad,” explained Tessel, “Plus it’s promised to be Yachad’s featured video which is cooler than an iPad.”
The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.