our Mission

GrowTorah aims to cultivate a more passionate, compassionate and sustainable future driven by Torah values.

 
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What we do:

GrowTorah develops educational Torah garden programs for Jewish schools and communal organizations. GrowTorah curates educational garden experiences through which participants explore relevant Jewish values and Torah lessons, and learn the fundamentals of gardening, farming and planting. The Torah lessons interwoven into the educational garden experiences inspire participants to navigate the complex relationships between humans, their fellow creatures, and the earth, and encourages participants to connect with these values in powerful and personally meaningful ways.

 
 

Here’s a sample of what some of our programs look like at our various partners:

 
 

Our Vision

The garden provides myriad teachable moments and learning opportunities, from laws involving agricultural charities to the implications of the laws pertaining to the garden on Shabbat. Participants of GrowTorah engage with food justice firsthand, as they must decide what portion of their produce to donate to local charities. Educators can use the garden as a springboard for conversations on local, national, and global food policy. Students are inspired by the food they grow to eat more healthfully, and recite their brachot (blessings) more thoughtfully and with greater meaning and intention.

Within 10 years, we envision a GrowTorah program in every Jewish day school across North America, which will serve as an interdisciplinary experiential laboratory for students to engage with Torah, science, health, Jewish values and ethics, and more. Join us as we seek to create a movement that will change the way students and others who engage fully with the greater Jewish community see the world in which they live and the earth which they help steward.

 
 

Our Story

GrowTorah began as an outgrowth of the Moshava Ba'ir Amir Garden at The Frisch School in August 2014. The following school year, Yosef Gillers piloted the first GrowTorah program at The Frisch School. In the spring of 2016, he brought the next iteration of the program to SAR Academy, SAR High School, and Ben Porat Yosef. In March 2017 The Kaplen JCC on the Palisades, in Tenafly, NJ, began a GrowTorah garden program, where we serve nursery students, senior citizens, and participants with special needs, in a shared multi-use garden space. In September 2017, GrowTorah expanded to Maayanot Yeshiva High School, in Teaneck, NJ.  If you'd like your school or communal organization to be GrowTorah's next site, contact us here!