Chai Mitzvah Kicks Off: Welcome Messages from Your Directors

From David Heilbron, JFGI Director of Youth Philanthropy and Connection:

"Welcome to an amazing year of Chai Mitzvah! My role as Community Coordinator is all about making your year of learning, social action and exploration as meaningful and engaging as possible. I’m looking forward to being a part of your Jewish journey as look to engage with Judaism in a new way.

While the majority of your Chai Mitzvah experience will take place in your local learning circle, I’m hoping to enrich your year-long experience by providing opportunities for Chai Mitzvah learners from across the community to come together. This may include learning opportunities, communal social action project and meet-ups to enrich your personal Chai Mitzvah experience.

While not focusing on Chai Mitzvah, I run the Youth Philanthropy Indy (YoPhI) program at the Jewish Federation and love being involved in all things education. My door is always open and if there is anything that I can do you support your Chai Mitzvah experience, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Wishing you a meaningful and exciting Chai Mitzvah year!"

 David Heilbron

 Questions? Contact David at 317-715-6974 or


From Audrey Lichter, Executive Director of Chai Mitzvah:

"Welcome Greater Indianapolis to Chai Mitzvah’s Ignite Initiative! We at Chai Mitzvah know that Indianapolis has many opportunities for Jewish engagement and want to partner with you in celebrating the richness of Jewish life in Indianapolis. We are so excited to be working with your very talented David Heilbron of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis in bringing a variety of Chai Mitzvah groups to your community.

Chai Mitzvah brings people together for 9 group sessions across the community for meaningful conversations grounded in Jewish text. In addition, individuals identify areas that are important to them in learning, ritual/spiritual growth and social action and commit to a goal in each of these areas. We know that healthy adults grow throughout their lifetime. Our oldest Chai Mitzvah participant was 101!

 Chai Mitzvah groups can form within organizations or just among friends. Although many groups are led by Jewish professions, we offer a great deal of support for lay leaders who want to lead the discussions. Consider putting a Chai Mitzvah group together to mark a special time in your life, to honor or remember someone special, to build community, or just to try something different. At the end of the program, we plant a tree through the Jewish National Fund in your honor and present you with the Certificate of Completion

Chai Mitzvah, is a 501(c)3 non-profit, and has over 1,000 people a year in programs throughout North America and another 250 participants in Israel. This year we expanded to London, Halifax (Nova Scotia), and Australia. We have a robust teen program with over 500 teens, and work with adults across the denominational spectrum and across the ages. We are also sponsoring a new interfaith initiative around our Board Chairman Scott Shay’s new book In Good Faith.

Please ask David for information about this and the other ways you can be part of this exciting community wide initiative. He is here to support you and celebrate your achievements. We look forward to much success in Greater Indianapolis. B'hatzlacha!"

 Audrey Lichter


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