The artwork on this note card was created by 5768 WRJ Art Calendar artist Césan d’Ornellas Levine.
Join hundreds of congregations from across the country that bring high school students to the Religious Action Center’s L’Taken Social Justice Seminars in Washington, D.C.
First Time Congregation Information
New congregations and groups join us each year. Let us help you make this a reality for your congregation! First time congregations and congregations that have not attended L’Taken in the past four years, receive a L’Taken scholarship. We also have a variety of resources available to support congregations in their first year of L’Taken.
Below is information to help you prepare and plan to bring your group for the first time to a L’Taken Seminar
What is L’Taken?
L’Taken is a transformational 4-day weekend focused on Jewish values, tikkun olam and public policy. The program exposes high school students to a variety of public policy issues, guides them to explore the Jewish values surrounding these issues and teaches them the skills to be an effective social justice advocate. The weekend culminates with meeting on Capitol Hill. Your teens will have the opportunity to speak truth to power as they share their views on social justice topics with leaders on Capitol Hill. While exploring Washington, D.C., teens build and strengthen their congregational community and experience their own individual capacity to create change. More information about L’Taken can be found here.
What are the costs for a first time congregation attending L’Taken?
The costs for L’Taken are outlined on our Costs page. Congregations attending for the first time receive a $200 per person scholarship for up to 10 people (maximum $2,000 scholarship). This scholarship will be applied to your final bill.
Does the RAC provide any material to help me recruit students and families?
Yes! Please see materials below to help you recruit students and explain L’Taken to your families.
My families are concerned about missing school. Does the RAC provide excused absence letters?
Yes! We have two excused absence letters that students can use to inform their school of their absence over the L’Taken weekend. The first is a letter from the RAC and the second is a letter you can use to personalize for your students.
How does transportation work for L’Taken?
Please see our Transportation page with detailed transportation information.
When will I receive the schedule?
The final schedule for the weekend will be sent out the Tuesday prior to the weekend. Our Sample weekend schedule will give you a very good sense of the weekend.
I see that the L’Taken program begins at 6:15pm on Friday. We are arriving to D.C. earlier than this. What should we do?
If your group is arriving early and would like to store bags before venturing out into the city, the front desk of your hotel will be able to help store your luggage.
If your group is arriving in DC on Thursday night, please make sure that you tell us in advance. We will work with the hotel to arrange hotel rooms for your group for an extra day at our group rate. We will charge you for those extra nights on your final bill. If you would like to arrive in DC on Thursday, please make sure to include this information on all of your forms as well as send us an email reminder.
Where does the program take place?
The majority of L’Taken will take place at the hotel. In August, we will send out an email with your specific hotel details. We do not post hotel information on our website for security purposes. On Saturday and Sunday, we will visit various places around D.C, including the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Georgetown, the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and the Smithsonian museums. On Monday, we will be on Capitol Hill for lobbying.
What weekends is L’Taken offered and how do I register for L’Taken?
You can find a list of 2017-2018 L’Taken weekends and register your group here.
How can I connect with other chaperones and congregations that bring groups to L’Taken to learn best practices?
Great question! Join us in the L’Taken Chaperone Group in The Tent . The Tent is the URJ’s networking platform. The L’Taken Chaperones group will allow you to connect with chaperones for tips, ideas and best practices to make the most of your L’Taken weekend. The first time you enter the The Tent, you’ll be prompted to create an account.
What is the role of a L’Taken Chaperone?
First and foremost, the role of L’Taken chaperones is overseeing the health and safety of your participants and directly supervising them.
Chaperones play an integral role in the overall L’Taken experience.
In a nutshell, your role as a chaperone during the L’Taken seminar has three parts:
First, we ask that you make every effort to ensure your students' attendance and participation in all aspects of the program, including meals. Our programming is designed to follow an arc that prepares participants for their meetings on Capitol Hill on Monday. It is vital to their experience that they are present for programs. This includes three off-site field trips into D.C., when you will be responsible for supervising your participants. Please note that you will also be responsible for any night time supervision of your students.
Second, please strive to help your participants get the most out of the seminar by facilitating group discussions and informal conversations that give them a chance to contextualize what they are learning. Your students will not all be at the same programs at the same time. By checking in with them one-on-one and as a group, you will help them integrate their experiences into a broader understanding of social justice as both an American ideal and a core Jewish value.
Third, roll up your sleeves and help us out! You will be given the chance to support the RAC's program staff and Legislative Assistants in their programming, and we ask that you volunteer for at least one or two of these opportunities. Our staff puts a great deal of effort into creating high level programming that is dynamic and informative. For many of these programs to run at their optimal level, we need help from chaperones to role play, lead discussions and facilitate activities.
For more information about what to expect, check out our chaperone video.
We could not run L’Taken without our dedicated chaperones! Thank you for all that you do!