Ma’yan provides feminist, social justice, and leadership training to self-identified teen girls and teaches vital skills to parents and educators. Based in New York City, we work towards greater equality for women and all people, in the Jewish community and the wider world. Ma’yan is a program of JCC Manhattan.
Vision & Values
Ma’yan strives to make our community and the wider world a better place for girls and women. We envision a society where young people of all gender identities are supported and taken seriously by adults.
We work towards an educational culture that helps young people value themselves and see themselves in relation to a larger community.
We try to show young people how power and privilege function so that as they become adults, they can work for greater equality in their communities and the wider world.
We believe that working with young people, whether in professional or domestic contexts, is challenging and critical work, and that adults should receive support around their experiences of teaching, parenting, and leading.
We believe in a collaborative practice, wherein educators, young people, and parents work across cultural and institutional boundaries in order to support one another personally and professionally.
Our Jewish Vision
B’tzelem Elohim (meaning “in God’s image”) – We believe that every person has inherent value. We are working toward a world where people of every religion, age, race, national origin, class, gender identity, sexual orientation, or physical ability experience respect and justice.
At Ma’yan we believe in Jewish self acceptance. Our programming applies an intersectional analysis to what it mean to be Jewish in today’s world, confronting anti-semitism in the context of all forms of oppression.
We want all who identify as Jewish to be able to stay engaged with their Judaism because they see a place for themselves in the community. We believe that we do not have to reject our Jewish selves in order to fight oppression. There is a radical space in the Jewish community and a Jewish place in the activist world.
Programs for Teens
Our programming for self-identified teen girls emphasizes personal development, critical inquiry, and ethical leadership. Using an array of teaching tools, including Participatory Action Research, creative expression, and activism, we help girls to understand themselves, explore the world around them, and imagine possibilities for personal and political change.
Workshops and Trainings
Ma’yan conducts workshops and trainings designed to help youth professionals and parents support young people. Our researchers and educators provide strategic, insightful, and action-oriented support designed to build strong communities and improve relationships between young people and adults.
We collaborate with artists, writers, and speakers, and with Jewish, youth-serving, and activist organizations. If you’re interested in working with us, please contact our program director Sonia Alexander.