Program Overview

Merkaz Q is a summer camp experience for LGBTQ+, non-binary or trans teens and allies interested in the intersections of Jewish and LGBTQ+ identities. Learn more about yourself, make new friends, grapple with ideas that matter to you in a safe and fun environment.

Maybe you’re a member of a Tzelem group, maybe you’ve attended a Keshet Shabbaton, maybe you have never met another Jewish teen who identifies as LGBTQ+ or an ally yet – this two-week camp experience is for you!

Keshet and Moving Traditions are joining together to offer this new program built for teens like you: all the best of camp and an inclusive small community within camp that centers teens who may not always feel centered in school and other camp settings. Open to rising 9th through 12th grade LGBTQ+ teens, non-binary teens, and allies who are interested in exploring gender and sexuality identity through the lens of Jewish experience and culture in an affirming and supportive community that prioritizes your wellbeing.

Thanks to Our Partners

Moving Traditions emboldens Jewish youth to thrive through the pursuit of personal wellbeing (shleimut), caring relationships (hesed), and a Jewish and feminist vision of equity and justice (tzedek). Keshet works for the full equality of all LGBTQ+ Jews and our families in Jewish life. We have long collaborated to offer Tzelem groups for LGBTQ+ and non-binary teens and are so excited to now be partnering on Merkaz Q.

This program is offered in partnership with Camp Tel Yehudah, which is thrilled to announce we have been accepted as a RootOne trip provider! RootOne is an initiative of The Jewish Education Project that helps connect thousands of Jewish teens to Israel by lowering the financial barrier to participation in immersive trips, and by investing in the educational quality of those experiences. A seamless partner for Camp Tel Yehudah with shared values, mission and vision, we can’t wait to work with RootOne to not only grow the number of teens who participate in our program, but to enhance the depth of their experiences as well.

Vouchers Now Available!

As Tel Yehudah partners with RootOne, we are excited to announce the availability of  vouchers to use toward tuition at Tel Yehudah this summer:

Current 10th and 11th graders registered for Merkaz are eligible for a $2000 RootOne voucher.

Please read carefully:

  1. Participants must first be registered for Tel Yehudah before applying for a RootOne voucher.
  2. There are a limited number of vouchers so please apply as soon as possible.
  3. Participants can only receive one of the above RootOne vouchers.
  4. Participants must not have already received a RootOne voucher for a trip to Israel.
  5. Students in Orthodox Day Schools are not eligible for these vouchers.
  6. Participants who receive a RootOne voucher this summer for Tel Yehudah will still be eligible to receive a voucher next summer if they go on our Young Judaea Gesher program to Israel (or any other RootOne program).   

How do I get a RootOne voucher?

  1. Make sure you are registered with Tel Yehudah for  Merkaz. 
  2. Click HERE  to access the RootOne application. This will need to be completed by both parents and teens.  Please read their terms and conditions carefully.  To receive a voucher, you also need to agree to complete pre and post surveys.  (Please note that the application talks about “trips.”  Our Tel Yehudah programs are being considered as trips by RootOne.)
  3. Once your application has been approved by RootOne, we will apply the voucher to your account.

What do I do if my account balance is negative after receiving a voucher?

We will be sending information and a form to complete about how you would like us to manage your negative balance. The choices are:

  1. Transfer the balance to our Tuition Assistance Fund to help Israeli and American teens come to Tel Yehudah this summer.  This includes helping us bring 40 teens from Moshav Netiv Ha’asara. 
    1. Refund the entire balance to your method of payment.
    1. Refund part of the balance and apply part to the Tuition Assistance Fund.

We are very excited to be able to offer this opportunity to enhance the Israel experience at Tel Yehudah while making camp more affordable for all.

With support from: