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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Repair the World and J-Teen Leadership Focus on Urgent Issues During Service Trip to Philadelphia

NY Teens’ Efforts Help an Estimated 1,500 People Through Local Service Organizations

Press Release – Philadelphia – In early fall, Repair the World Philadelphia and J-Teen Leadership, a program of UJA-Federation of NY, partnered to bring New York teens to Philadelphia to engage in meaningful service and learning around education justice, community health care, and food insecurity. Prior to the trip, the teens collected 700 lbs of donated items, including toiletries, school supplies, and clothes, which filled half the bus destined for those with need.

The 21 teens served an estimated 1,500 people in the Greater Philadelphia area through service organizations Cradles to Crayons Philadelphia, Jewish Relief Agency (JRA),

Open Kitchen Sculpture Garden, Markoe Street Community Garden, Philadelphia Fight, and more. At JRA, they volunteered with local teens from Youth Volunteer Corps.

“Throughout the weekend working with J-Teen working in Philadelphia, my experience led me to the realization of how much we, as a team of volunteers, not only had a significant impact on the thousands of people to improve the quality of life of the Philadelphia community but also myself, becoming part of a wider community, learning new life skills and making a difference,” concluded on participant.

In total, the teens and three staff dedicated a total of 232 hours of service. They impacted the area in a number of ways, including:

  • 7+ Organizations served with, including
    • Cradles to Crayons
    • Jewish Relief Agency
    • Open Kitchen Sculpture Garden
    • Markoe Street Community Garden
    • Jewish Farm School
    • Youth Volunteer Corps
    • YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter
  • 700 Lbs of donations brought- half a bus load!
  • 2,000 clothing items sorted
  • 1,100 fall coats packed
  • 18 Philadelphian teens met and engaged with
  • 2,600 lbs of food packed
  • 90 individuals served at home with food boxes
  • 30 art tires hung
  • 500 weeds pulled (rough estimate)
  • 111 holidays letters written to incarcerated individuals and others
  • 200 slices of pizza consumed (or so) and 2 dozens of Insomnia Cookies!

“I would say the most meaningful aspect of the trip would be the fact that this was a Jewish trip,” said one teen participant. “After the events of Pittsburgh, I think it was super important to go out the community and show them that in spite of the violence that occurred we still give back. Overall just building raises the reputation of Jews.”

“I think the variety in the projects was extremely beneficial because we were opened to different facets of community service. We dealt with youth, clothing, food insecurity, elderly, community development, teamwork, and creativity,” continued another teen participant.


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