Welcome to Teen Mosaic!

/Welcome to Teen Mosaic!
Welcome to Teen Mosaic! 2018-01-09T10:10:14+00:00

As of January 1, 2018, Mosaic of Westchester is now the Mosaic LGBTQ Committee of the Westchester Jewish Council (wjcouncil.org), rather than its own organization. Pam Goldstein, WJC’s Assistant Director is now the direct contact for Mosaic. She can be reached at 914-328-7001 or at pam@wjcouncil.org.


Mosaic’s Teen Programming is now being led by Keshet. To learn more about the teen program, contact Keshet’s new Youth Programs Associate, Amram Altzman.



Meet Amram Altzman, Keshet’s new Youth Programs Associate


Having been involved with Keshet since he was a teenager, Amram is thrilled to be returning to Keshet as Youth Programs Associate, where he works to create vibrant, empowering spaces for LGBTQ and ally Jewish teens around the country through Keshet’s Shabbatonim, and more specifically in Westchester County, New York. He is a recent graduate of the joint undergraduate program between the Jewish Theological Seminary and Columbia University, where he studied Jewish history and sociology, respectively. Amram is also a freelance writer, and spent three years writing as a contributor for New Voices Magazine, an independent, online magazine by and for Jewish college students; his writing has also been featured in the Forward, on Jewcy, and on Keshet’s own blog. He is excited to bring a passion for justice, the social sciences, experiential education, and art to his work with Keshet’s teens. Amram lives in New York with his fiancé, Jamie, and their two cats, Perle and Herschel. He likes to live his life with an unironic, unwavering love for cats, kale, coffee, and pop music.

Email: amram@keshetonline.org
Phone: (646) 838-4524

croppedLGBTQ Teen and allies gathering 3.7.15-havdalah ceremony-candles


Come meet other LGBTQ and ally Jewish teens (grades 8-12) from in and around Westchester County to learn and workshop different ways to be effective leaders and activists in the Jewish community today, and to talk through the unique challenges of being LGBTQ and Jewish in our homes, schools, synagogues, and communities. Each meeting will focus on a different theme, and this month’s will focus on telling our stories as we look forward to the new school and Jewish years. Free and kosher dinner, snacks, and dessert will be provided.



Meet Sean, one of Mosaic’s own Storytellers

We are excited that Sean, an active member of the Mosaic Teen Advisory Council, has volunteered to become a Mosaic Storyteller!  This involved Sean working with our professional storyteller consultant to develop and articulate his personal story to be shared with the Westchester Jewish community. Sean shares “ I didn’t think that both my gay and Jewish identities could co-exist. However, through my involvement with Mosaic, both my identities have been able to thrive and I have been able to embrace them more”.







Israel Day Parade and the NYC Pride March

June 2017

On June 4th, 100 Jewish LGBTQ and ally teens and adults danced, sand and marched together with A Wider Bridge, Eshel, JQY, Keshet and Mosaic of Westchester down  5th Avenue to celebrate Israel and our LGBTQ identities.

Marching group at Celebrate Israel 2017

group selfie-Celebrate Israel









And on June 25, hundreds of Jewish LGBTQ and ally teens and adults from several Jewish organizations marched proudly in solidarity with Congregation Beit Simchat Torah in the RESIST delegation.

group shot on street -Pride March 2017

Diana Schutt and Bina Pride 2017

Sean-Pride 2017








Yakira and her Dad-Mark with friends at Pride 2017











Alyx and Sean speaking at brunch-Pride March 2017

Two Mosaic teen storytellers shared inspiring words with the community at a pre-Pride brunch prior to marching together in solidarity!











Our teens attended the LGBTQ Teen Summit at the Museum of the City of New York

 February 2017


photo on museum steps with signSeveral teens from Westchester joined with the Keshet-Mosaic cohort to attend the LGBTQ Teen Summit at the Museum of the City of New York.  The teens enjoyed the gallery tour Gay Gotham: Art and Underground Culture in New York; dancing, art-making, rapping, and engaging with a teen panel who spoke about the importance of self-acceptance and love-and advocacy..







Our teens celebrated Chanukah a little early this year

December 2016












Israeli transgender rights leaders visited Westchester and presented at Temple Israel Center in collaboration with Mosaic of Westchester, A Wider Bridge, and Keshet

August 2016


Ma’avarim Executive Director, Elisha Alexander, and Ma’avarim teen leaders with NY teens

Ma’avarim Executive Director, Elisha Alexander, and Ma’avarim teen leaders with NY teens

Selfie of Ma’avarim leaders and leaders from Mosaic of Westchster, A Wider Bridge, and Keshet!

Selfie of Ma’avarim leaders and leaders from Mosaic of Westchster, A Wider Bridge, and Keshet!

(left to right)..Partner organizations leadership-Tyler Gregory, A Wider Bridge’s Deputy Director; Elisha Alexander, Ma’avarim’s Executive Director, Bina Raskin, Mosiac’s Executive Director Justin Rosen Smolen, Keshet’s National Direcor of Youth Programs and Sonia Alexander, Mosaic’s Director of Teen Engagement

(left to right)..Partner organizations leadership-Tyler Gregory, A Wider Bridge’s Deputy Director; Elisha Alexander, Ma’avarim’s Executive Director, Bina Raskin, Mosiac’s Executive Director Justin Rosen Smolen, Keshet’s National Direcor of Youth Programs and Sonia Alexander, Mosaic’s Director of Teen Engagement









There were 2 wonderful programs on August 16th!

Teen program: Several NY LGBTQ teens shared pizza and great conversation with three young Israeli trans leaders of Ma’avarim , Alan, Adi, and Amy who are working to make Israel a place for transgender teenagers and young adults to grow and thrive. The teens shared that they loved their experience together and new friendships were made!

Community program: Elisha Alexander, Executive Director of Ma’avarim, and the three young Israeli transgender teen leaders, Alan, Adi and Amy shared their moving stories and discussed their work of building transgender community and advocacy all across Israel. The audience shared that they were moved by their stories and the incredible work of Ma’avarim.



Marching in NYC Pride

June 2016

croppedgreat group photo pride 2016Mosaic, Keshet, USY, JQY, and Footsteps joined forces to bring together a powerful presence of Jewish LGBTQ teens and allies at the NYC Pride March! We started with a big brunch where we got to connect and get pumped, and then headed out to the march in a big crew. We marched besides CBST congregation in a Jewish cohort full of pride and enthusiasm and we had over 75 people! It was a beautiful day and we can’t wait to do it again next year!  



Book Giveaway

June 2016

Thanks to a grant from the Jewish Education Project, Mosaic was able to give our teens a Jewish LGBTQ themed book for the summer, plus an extra to give to another Westchester based LGBTQ Jewish teen they know! mosaicbooks






Zanna, Don’t at the Play Group Theater

June 2016

Mosaic teens and families attended a play at the youth theater in White Plains (the Play Group Theater) called Zanna, Don’t– a musical about a high school where being gay is the norm and the adventures of a magical love fairy. It was great!teen photo- theater night..6.5.16







Our First Parent/Guardian Group of this year

May, 2016

CoffeeNine parents of Mosaic teens came together with warmth and enthusiasm. We got to know one another and had great conversations. We look forward to meeting again on Tuesday July 12- to continue to build connections, community, knowledge, and resources in order to be the best allies possible.





A Staff Training at Temple Shaaray Tefila

May, 2016

head Led by our Director of Teen Engagement, Sonia Alexander, ten senior staff members participated in a Mosaic training about inclusivity for LGBTQ teens and members at large. We heard stories, reflected on values, and reviewed ways to be a strong ally. Shaaray Tefila staffed brainstormed ways for their community to move forward and take bold steps towards increasing inclusivity- it was very inspiring!





A Teen Led Training at Westchester Jewish Center

May, 2016

From left to right…Sonia Alexander-Mosaic’s Director of Teen Engagement; Bina Raskin-Mosaic’s Executive Director; Mosaic teens; and Shoshi Rosenbaum-WJC’s Director of Teen Engagement

Two Mosaic teens shared their personal stories and led interesting presentations about depictions of LGBTQ people in the Media, and Trans activism to a group of sixteen teens at WJC’s Hebrew High.  They also engaged in a lively Q & A – they did awesome and it was an inspiring and unique learning opportunity for all!  We are excited to do more collaborative activities with them next year….




Purim Party!

April, 2016










Mosaic teens celebrated a belated Purim together. Two of our Advisory Council teens wrote an LGBTQ themed Purim skit, which the Advisory Council performed for the rest of the teens. We made masks and ate rainbow hamentaschen made by Mosaic Board member Abby Reiken.


Pesach Walking Tour in NY City

April, 2016




Mosaic and Keshet brought teens together to learn about LGBTQ history in Greenwich Village, NYC. Les Skolnik (Jewish Education Project) and Rabbi David Dunn Bauer(CBST) led us in a walking tour. We heard stories and grounded in LGBTQ, and specifically Jewish LGBTQ history, of the neighborhood. We saw the LGBTQ Center and learned its history, saw the site of the former St. Vincent’s hospital which served many during the AIDS crisis, saw Stonewall, and much more. Next year we hope to expand to invite adults as well!


A Teen Led Training at Westchester Reform Temple    

April, 2016

lgbtwords-editedTwo Mosaic teens led awesome presentations about LGBTQ terminology and allyship to a group of about twenty tenth-graders in WRT’s confirmation class. Our teens also engaged in a lively Q & A – they did great and it was an inspiring and unique learning opportunity for everybody present.





Prideworks Conference

March, 2016

prideworks2Mosaic, Keshet, and Schechter Westchester attended the Prideworks Conference together! It was fun, inspiring, and educational. We came together with groups of LGBTQ and ally teens throughout Westchester County and beyond! It was a fun way to connect to the larger community. We had a group of six teens, one parent, and three educators. We had breakfast and lunch together, each attended various presentations, and had an engaging discussion together afterwards. We’ll go back next year!


LGBTQ Teen gathering 3.7.15 rainbow cake slices

Our first ever teen support group

January, 2016 

 Mosaic’s initiative to enhance Westchester LGBTQ Jewish teen engagement got kickstarted with our first ever support group! First, the Teen Advisory Council met, Mosaic’s teen leadership group, with four teens who have been a part of the group since it began, and three teens who just joined the Council! Then the support group met with a total of nine teens- two who were brand new to Mosaic’s programming.

Afterwards everybody stayed for a pizza dinner with community building games and some Tu Bishvat learning. We had fun getting to know each other and laying the ground work for ongoing community building, discussion, support, learning and fun. We’re so excited to meet again on Sunday February 28!



Our first county-wide event for LGBTQ teens and allies  

March, 2015

Following that event, we formed a Mosaic Jewish teen LGBTQ Advisory Council to help us plan ways to help Westchester become more LGBTQ inclusive and welcoming for Jewish LGBTQ teens! 


LGBTQ Teen an allies gathering 3.7.15 -pesach supplement breakout session 3.7.15

LGBTQ Teen and allies gatheirng 3.7.15 -group photo

LGBTQ Teen and allies gathering 3.7.15-havdalah ceremony-candles















Solomon Schechter School of Westchester 

GLSEN-The Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network

WJCS-Center Lane

If you or your family are Orthodox……

  • Check out Jewish Queer Youth (JQYouth or JQY), a social and support group for frum and formerly frum LGBT Jews ages 17-30.
  • Visit Eshel, an organization dedicated to creating understanding and support for LGBT people in traditional communities. They offer great events and resources designed especially for observant Jews.


from Keshet: What to do when a friend comes out to you

from Keshet:Top 10 ways to respond to”That’s So Gay“