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Jewish Community Center

Nishmah – Programs for Girls

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nishmah-logoNishmah offers a continuum of quality Jewish programs for girls in 1st-12th grade. Girls from diverse backgrounds come together to learn from each other and experience the world through a Jewish lens.

See what the St. Louis Jewish Light says about It’s a Girl Thing!

Support Nishmah


Words to Action with Nishmah: Empowering Women to Address Anti-Semitism

Camp Ramah_5Sunday, June 10, 9:30am-12:30pm
Regional Arts Commission
6128 Delmar Blvd, St. Louis 63112

A special learning opportunity based on ADL’s interactive education designed to equip students and community with constructive and effective responses to combat anti-Semitism and anti-Israel bias. Words to Action (originally known as Confronting Anti-Semitism) was created in the 1980s in response to a comprehensive ADL survey of Jewish youth in New England. They were regularly experiencing anti-Semitic comments, taunts, harassment and graffiti in the halls and classrooms of schools and communities. Rather than stand up to prejudice, many remained silent. Today, as anti-Semitism continues, many face another form, that which is fueled by anti-Israel sentiment.  Join together with Nishmah and ADL to experience and learn.

This program is free of charge and open to girls and women high-school age and older. Space is limited and registration is required. Light refreshments provided.

ADL logoContact: Shira Kraft, Director of Nishmah, 314.442.3111

Register Online

Nishmah Teen Banot Board

A leadership development program for girls in 9th – 12th grade.

Calling all Jewish teen girls! Are you interested in making new friends while getting to know younger girls in grades 2-4? Are you looking for a powerful experience where you can develop and hone your leadership skills, hear from local women leaders, get involved in social justice and advocacy activities, as well as use your creativity and talents to develop exciting programs for others? As a Banot Board member, you participate in Nishmah’s Banot Buddies program by becoming a “buddy” to younger girls. Application submission is required by September 1.

$100 yearly general activity fee

“There really are no words to sum up my experience in Nishmah and on Banot Board. Since 6th grade, I was allowed to grow both as an individual and as a friend. I learned the importance of making friends and maintaining relationships, patience and planning. Now as a senior, I know I will take these skills into the real world. Looking back, I can’t believe I almost stopped attending It’s a Girl Thing. Because as of right now, I would do anything to experience it again. I will definitely miss this amazing part of my life. -Emma

Banot Buddies

This mentoring program pairs younger girls with Nishmah Teen Banot Board to explore girls’ (2nd – 4th grade) topics through a Jewish lens. The program focuses on a particular area that is relevant to modern “girlhood.” The older girls serve as mentors as they encourage younger girls to find healthy ways of navigating girlhood. The relationships between both groups support the fostering of leadership skills, self-esteem, and a lifelong connection to Jewish ideals.

“I love that Rachel has a “girl” place to grow up in that incorporates a Jewish Lens. I do not think any of us will truly understand the impact of empowering these little girls today, but we will know it years from now.” -Banot Buddies Mom

To register or for questions, contact Simone Picker, 314.442.3166.

Good Deeds Day 2018 with Banot Buddies

Join other girls for a meaningful day of service as a part of Good Deeds Day – a global movement! Participants will partake in a variety of service projects that will benefit the community. Nishmah’s Teen Banot Board will guide the participants through the activities. This is a partnership with Israeli Scouts.

Various Locations
Sunday, April 15, 3-5pm

To register or for questions, contact Simone Picker, 314.442.3166.

Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing

Taste of Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing!                                                

5th-8th grade girls. Take this opportunity to learn about this amazing program where Jewish girls meet once a month to talk, visit and bond over life experiences and how Judaism may help them understand it all. It’s also a great way to expand your circle of friends and interact with really cool Jewish girls you may have not otherwise met. Following this kickoff, monthly programs continue in September.

Contact: Simone Picker, 314-442-3166

Sunday, August 19, 3-5pm
Staenberg Family Complex/Creve Coeur

Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing! is a national program of Moving Traditions that challenges Jewish girls to think critically about the world while enriching their Jewish identities through the connection of Jewish tradition to relevant issues facing them today. For girls in grades 5, 6, 7 & 8 to meet new friends in a fun, creative and interactive Jewish space.

Program Brochure

“We are from all different schools and different Jewish backgrounds but we all connect during the time together. I have learned so much about myself and about the world around me through a Jewish and “girl” view. It’s the one program that I never want to miss.” – Leah, It’s a Girl Thing! Participant

“It’s A Girl Thing” is one of our community’s best-kept secrets! The intimate and safe setting – yet also a fun and energetic one –lends itself to some very meaningful experiences for our daughters. I never imagined that she’d like learning about Jewish values so much that she doesn’t want to miss a session. -Bonnie, mother of a participant

Creve Coeur

2018-2019 Dates
Sundays, 3-5pm
September 16, October 14, November 11, December 9, January 13, February 10, March 10, April 7, May 5

Participants meet with trained facilitators once a month in intimate groups of 10-12 girls.


Register Online

5th grade: The Lev Year (Heart)

Led by Orna Isaacson, Masters of Social Work/LCSW and over 10 years of experience working with children

Themes at a Glance

6th grade: The Ruach Year (Spirit)

Led by Leah Frankel, Masters of Social Work, experienced school-based consultant and mental health professional

Themes at a Glance

7th/8th Grades: The Kol Year (Voice)

Led by Lisa Deutsch, Masters of Social Work, more than 10 years of experience as Girl Thing group leader

Themes at a Glance

Rosh Hodesh at B’nai Amoona

Nishmah is partnering with Congregation B’nai Amoona on a 6th-8th grade Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing! group, hosted at B’nai Amoona (324 S. Mason Rd, 63141). Contact Avital Ostfield at 314.576.9990 ext. 116.

Program generously funded by the Lubin-Green Foundation, a supporting foundation of The Jewish Federation of St. Louis

For more information about Nishmah’s programs for girls, contact Simone Picker, Banot Program Coordinator, 314.442.3166.