Young Adults


Jewish Community, On Your Terms

A starting place for young adults to get involved in Bay Area Jewish life 

Are you looking to connect with your Jewish community and meet new friends, volunteer, network with young professionals, or take on leadership roles? If so, you've come to the right place. We know that Jewish life isn’t as easy to find out west, but the good news is that it’s here for you – however you identify Jewishly –and ready to help you build community.

We believe that community building happens best through personal relationships, so we encourage you to reach out to the professionals and leaders listed below – they'd love to connect! Depending on what you’re looking for, we recommend starting with any one or more of these places:

  1. The Make It Happen Fund is available to help make your dream gathering or project a reality. Get up to $500 in reimbursable program expenses to build Jewish community and experiences your way. Applications are open and are reviewed on a rolling basis. Get more information and apply.  
  2. Our Bay Area Young Adult Connectors are your peers on the ground looking to build relationships with diverse young adults seeking community and connection in local Jewish life. Contact one of them for a chat and learn more about ways you can get involved!
  3. Learn about different organizations and programs in the Bay Area for young adults on our resource page and in our Facebook group. For occasional updates on local programming for Jewish young adults, subscribe to our newsletter.
  4. There are many ways to experience Israel with young adult peers. Our partners at Israel Outdoors currently run Birthright trips for local young adults every summer and winter. Looking for a longer experience? Masa Israel Journey offers a menu of different experiences in Israel, from gap years, to teaching English, to internships at top startups. And want to travel with your partner? Check out Honeymoon Israel. We also offer grant and scholarship opportunities for Israel travel – on the program of your choice – for young adults up to age 26. 
  5. To explore what it means for you to be a strategic and savvy philanthropist, reach out to Debbie Berkowitz, Senior Director, Family Philanthropy. Learn how to make the most impact with your giving and involvement, while gaining a broader understanding of the Federation's overall philanthropic footprint.

Meet the Bay Area Young Adult Peer Connectors

We are lucky to live in one of the most innovative, creative, and diverse Jewish communities in North America and believe that there is somewhere for every Jewish young adult here to find meaning and connection. Whether you grew up steeped in a Jewish upbringing, or were never quite sure what being Jewish meant to you, or you've sometimes thought, "I'm only Jew-ish,” we want to hear more about your unique journey.

Our Young Adult Peer Connectors can help you find those opportunities that will pique your interest or motivate you to make a change and connect you with the people that share your passions and interests. They are excited to get to know you and support you in finding a sense of belonging and community within Jewish life.

Carey Averbook (She/They), Jewish Community Center San Francisco

Carey Averbook grew up in North Carolina, lived in Washington, DC and Bolivia, and moved to the Bay Area in 2019. They have background in anthropology and international development, photography and video production, storytelling, human centered design, and emotional hygiene and spiritual resiliency coaching. All their work has come back to questions about what's a good life and what is it to be well as human beings given climate collapse and systems of violence and domination.


Emma Goss (She/Her), Oshman Family Jewish Community Center Palo Alto

Emma Goss

Emma Goss is the young adult program coordinator at the Oshman Family JCC, and the peer connector for ENGAJ!

Emma grew up in the Bay Area attending Jewish day schools, and graduated from Kehillah Jewish High School, just across from the Oshman Family JCC. Emma is excited to co-create fun and meaningful Jewish experiences with ENGAJ in hopes of sparking lasting friendships and fostering an inclusive environment.

Before joining the JCC, Emma founded a Jewish young adult group in Bakersfield, California that served to bring local Jewish adults in their 20s and 30s to engage in Jewish social and cultural events and volunteer opportunities. She was also a Serve the Moment Corps Member with Repair the World Bay Area in the 2021 summer cohort engaging in Jewish social justice causes.

Emma loves testing out new recipes in the kitchen and sharing her best ones with friends and family. She's also always up for a hike, grabbing a coffee and meeting new people.


Noam Green (They/Them), Urban Adamah

Noam moved to Oakland two years ago after graduating from college in New York City. They've since fallen for the plants and people that have welcomed them into the East Bay/Huchiun, Urban Adamah included, and they are excited to help do the same for other newcomers. Noam was raised by a tightly knit, pluralistic Jewish community that laid the foundations for their love of Torah learning, mutual aid, food-focused celebrations, and Shabbos rest. The things that really light Noam's fire these days include: discussing East Bay bike routes, combatting adultism, the magic and metaphor of fermentation, fostering affirming spaces for trans people, and sci-fi/fantasy.


Lauren Halperin (She/Her), Repair the World

Lauren Halperin

After getting a degree in English from the University of Michigan, Lauren came to Berkeley to participate in the Urban Adamah fellowship which deepened her understanding of her own Jewish identity and how it weaves into the world around her. Most recently, Lauren’s been living and learning in Moishe House Oakland Lake Merritt, a Bay Area hub within an international network of Jewish communal homes. Lauren has been working towards food justice and security in the Oakland community as a three-cohort member of the Service Corps and is excited to continue building and growing within this movement as the Bay Area Program Manager for Repair the World.


Emily McCrone (She/Her), The Orchard at Beth Am

Emily grew up in the San Jose. She moved to Fresno and then Dallas for school before moving back to the Bay Area 5 years ago. She jumped right into Bay Area Jewish young life, completing the ENGAJ fellowship and living in Moishe House Silicon Valley. She’s been a member at Beth Am for 5 years and is thrilled to be their newest Peer Connector.
Aside from the Orchard, Emily also works in healthcare, is a member of the Junior League San Jose, and enjoys rock climbing, hiking, and traveling in her spare time.
She is very excited to cultivate meaningful connections and contribute to the thriving Bay Area Jewish community.


Kayla Pollak (They/Them), The Kitchen

Kayla is a present community builder. They have a passion for fostering spiritual depth, communal care, and Jewish solidarity in liberation movements. They worked most recently as a public benefits paralegal and have experience as a collaborative leader at the Lake Merritt Moishe House, Romemu Synagogue in New York City, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, and The Bayit, the student-run Jewish Cooperative at Columbia University. Kayla is originally from outside of Los Angeles on Chumash land. They studied Human Rights and Jewish Ethics at Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary. They love the ocean, good conversations, and chocolate peanut butter cups. 


Cora Torton (She/Her), OneTable

Cora is your East Bay Field Specialist at OneTable. Cora's upbringing took her across Brazil, the US, and France, giving her a diverse cultural background, which she continues to intentionally expand on. In college she studied Geography, particularly intrigued by psycho-geography, delving into how our surroundings shape our thoughts and actions. Curiosity drew her into the tech world, where she gained experience in GIS. For the past couple of years, she's been dedicated to dance therapies and Somatic Psychology. She's been pouring her time and energy into studying these fields, passionate about helping people thrive through embodiment, intentional communication, and building a sense of community and belonging. Being a perpetual learner, Cora values curiosity and exploration, and her insights encompass the realms of human flourishing and human-centered design.




There are numerous young adult communities for you to explore in the Bay Area.  

The Bay Area is rich with organizations building community with and for young adults. Below is a listing of young adult communities we’ve compiled to help you participate in a wide variety of educational, leadership, volunteer, and social opportunities.

All organizations are located in San Francisco unless otherwise specified.

Arts and Culture

  1. Jewish Film Institute - The Jewish Film Institute inspires communities in San Francisco and around the world to expand their understanding of Jewish life through film, media, and dialogue. JFI hosts annual movie festivals, Winterfest and the Jewish Film Festival, and has a wide array of media on their website. Connect with them on Facebook.
  2. Jewish Studio Project (East Bay) - JSP empowers individuals of all levels of Jewish knowledge and arts experience to activate their creativity, gain new insights and address challenging communal issues. JSP works with synagogues, nonprofits, Hillels, and other Jewish communities. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. Contemporary Jewish Museum - Through innovative exhibitions and programs, the CJM makes the diversity of the Jewish experience relevant for a 21st century audience. Their Night at the Jewseum program is specifically designed for young adults. Connect with them on Facebook.
  4. Atiq: Jewish Maker Institute - Atiq empowers people of all ages to craft sacred material resources for deepening personal paths of meaning within Jewish tradition.


  1. The Tribe (Berkeley) - Congregation Beth El’s 20s and 30s groups host events in the East Bay, ranging from happy hours to group outings to Oakland A’s games.
  2. Young Adult Community at Congregation Emanu-El - Providing programs and events tailor-made for the young adult community (20s & 30s) and Gen E (mid 30s & 40s). Flagship programs include Summer Camp and Late-night Shabbat. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. The SOMA Shul - A project of Chabad, the SOMA Shul is a place for people to get together and celebrate their Judaism. They host Friday night services, happy hour, Shabbat dinners, and weekly Torah study groups. Connect with them on Facebook.
  4. The Kitchen - A religious community deeply grounded in serious exploration of Jewish text, tradition, and ritual. Connect with them on Facebook.
  5. Mission Minyan - Mission Minyan is a group of Jews who get together on a regular basis for spirited traditional davening and related festivities. This community gathers for dynamic, aesthetically compelling, liturgically complete davening, as well as study and social events. Connect with them on Facebook.

Professional Networking

  1. Young Jewish Professionals of Oakland (Oakland) - A vibrant group of Jewish young professionals, YJP offers events for those in their 20s and 30s to meet, network, and socialize in a welcoming and relaxed setting with a spirited vibe. Connect with them on Facebook.
  2. Jewish High Tech Community 2.0 (JHTC 2.0) (Silicon Valley) - JHTC aims to improve the quality of life in Silicon Valley for Jewish people working in and around technology. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. Business Leadership Community - The Federation’s Business Leadership Community (BLC) is modeled after leading professionals' networking groups, with members meeting monthly to connect and help each other with business challenges. All professionals are welcome to test out three meetings prior to officially joining. 


  1. JDC Entwine - A one-of-a-kind movement for young Jewish leaders, influencers, and advocates who seek to make a meaningful impact on global Jewish needs and international humanitarian issues. Entwine offers service experiences in Jewish communities around the world, educational events and programs, and leadership development opportunities. Connect with them on Facebook.
  2. World Zionist Organization - Department of Diaspora Activities - Working primarily to introduce Jews to different aspects of Israeli culture, politics and society through quality educational content and programming. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. Jews Indigenous to the Middle East and North Africa (JIMENA) - JIMENA is dedicated to educating and advocating on behalf of the 850,000 Jewish refugees from the Middle East and North Africa. In addition to student internships and Israel advocacy trainings, JIMENA has a Young Professionals Group aimed at those aged 21-45 who support their mission. Connect with them on Facebook.
  4. New Israel Fund - NIF helps Israel ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants. New Generations, NIF’s young adult branch, is an open and vibrant community of young professionals, social activists, community leaders and students in their 20s and 30s who want to learn about and engage with the most important issues facing Israel today. Connect with them on Facebook.
  5. Israel Cultural Connection (ICC@JCC) - ICC is a hub for the Israeli community where one can connect to their Israeli identity, celebrate Israeli culture and explore what it means to be an Israeli Jew living outside of Israel.

Community Building

  1. Jewish Community Center - The JCC is a general recreational, social, and fraternal organization serving Jewish communities worldwide. The Bay Area has JCCs in San Francisco, the East Bay, Santa Rosa, Palo Alto, Foster City, and Los Gatos.
  2. ENGAJ (Palo Alto) - A collaboration of the Oshman Family JCC and Hillel@Stanford, ENGAJ inspires Peninsula Jewish young professionals and graduate students to connect meaningfully. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. Moishe House - Fueled by the demand for peer-led, home-based programming from Jewish young adults and their Jewish communities, Moishe House has become a global leader of Jewish life for young adults. The Bay Area proudly has eight  Moishe Houses – Dolores, Nob Hill, NOPA, RSJ, Silicon Valley, Lake Merritt, Temescal, and Berkeley, almost all of which host seven programs per month that range from Jewish holiday celebrations to discussions on racial justice.
  4. Jewbilee SF - Founded by three San Franciscans, Jewbilee SF is a monthly party for Jews in their 20s and 30s. Connect with them on Facebook.
  5. InterfaithFamily - InterfaithFamily is the premier resource supporting interfaith couples exploring Jewish life and inclusive Jewish communities. They offer educational content; connections to welcoming organizations, professionals and programs; resources and training for organizations, clergy, and other program providers; and their new InterfaithFamily/Your Community initiative, providing coordinated, comprehensive offerings in local communities. Connect with them on Facebook.


  1. Urban Adamah (Berkeley) - Urban Adamah is an educational farm and community center that integrates the practices of Jewish tradition, sustainable agriculture, mindfulness, and social action to build loving, just, and sustainable communities. They provide educational programs and community celebrations for more than 5,000 visitors a year, as well as a residential fellowship program for young adults. Connect with them on Facebook.
  2. Wilderness Torah (Berkeley) - Wilderness Torah’s mission is to awaken and celebrate the earth-based traditions of Judaism in order to nourish the connections between self, community, earth, and Spirit. They provide multi-generational holiday retreats, Jewish youth education, community programs, and young adult leadership training. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. OneTable - OneTable helps people in their 20s and 30s find, enjoy, and share Shabbat dinners. OneTable provides one-on-one support to help the host find Jewish rituals that work best for them, as well as a nourishment credit of $15 per person. Connect with them on Facebook.
  4. Reboot - Reboot affirms the value of Jewish traditions and creates new ways for people to make them their own. They provide creative projects that spark the interest of young Jews and the larger community, such as The Friday App, 10Q, and Beyond Bubbie. Connect with them on Facebook.
  5. Bend the Arc - Bend the Arc is building the power and passion of the progressive Jewish movement in America by bringing together Jews from across the country to advocate and organize for a more just and equal society. Connect with them on Facebook.

Volunteer Opportunities

  1. Young Professional Community Connection at JFCS - Designed to create monthly volunteer opportunities for professionals in their 20s and 30s who are looking for ongoing and meaningful experiences. The project has a unique structure, which incorporates training from field experts at JFCS, and followed by direct service projects after each training; all guided by Jewish values. The project also includes a social component, where volunteers are able to meet other young professionals interested in giving back to the community.
  2. Jewish Coalition for Literacy (JCL) - JCL tutors provide one-on-one reading support for struggling readers from low-income homes. Daytime, afternoon, and early evening hours are available. Connect with them on Facebook.
  3. Day of Volunteering - YAD’s Day of Volunteering brings over 100 young adults together to volunteer at various sites throughout San Francisco. This event happens annually every July.

Upcoming Events

November 05, 2023
9:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Palo Alto
Contact Us 

Contact us

Amanda Cohen
Director, Young Adult Engagement

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