Our Teen Leadership programs give local high school students the opportunity to develop valuable leadership skills while participating in meaningful, ongoing service learning projects. Our goal is to help teens develop the necessary life skills to move into young adulthood smoothly, successfully, and responsibly.
In addition to extensive opportunities for hands-on service, JFS Teen Leadership Programs feature outside workshop presenters and speakers, include research-based leadership modules from Stanford University’s Youth Engaged in Leadership and Learning (YELL), and utilize the evidence-based Student Leadership Practices Inventory.
Girls Give Back - We empower the next generation of women leaders to create meaningful change in the world around them through leadership, empowerment, and service-learning while developing social-mindedness, critical thinking, healthy self-esteem, and empathy.
Hand Up Teen Leadership - This nationally-recognized program offers high school students an opportunity to learn about social change while making a measurable impact on the community. Teens receive leadership development training and run food distributions, coordinate food drives and fundraisers, organize advocacy and education activities, and plan special events that support the Hand Up Youth Food Pantry.
Hundreds of teens across San Diego support the Hand Up Youth Food Pantry and work to alleviate hunger as members of school-based Hand Up Clubs.
Making Money, Making Change - More than just a chance to learn financial literacy and business development, it is a unique opportunity for high school students to put those skills into action and launch their own social venture business.
Jessica Nare, MA
Supervisor, Youth Leadership Programs
Jessica coordinates the Girls Give Back program and supervises Youth Leadership Programs at JFS. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Ohio Wesleyan University and an M.A. in Women’s Studies from SDSU. She currently teaches university level courses in Sociology, Global Studies, and Women’s Studies. Prior to working at JFS, Jessica directed programming at the Midge Costanza Leadership Institute for Public Policy and Politics. Jessica is inspired every day by the incredible teens who volunteer through the Youth Leadership Department. Their creativity, commitment, and passion for positive change continue to amaze her.
Coordinator, Hand Up Teen Leadership
Andrew has worked for JFS since 2008. He has a degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Management from SDSU, where he was very involved with Hillel and led a Birthright trip to Israel. In 2010, he was selected by Major League Baseball and People Magazine as an "All-Star" in the "All-Stars Among Us" campaign for his passion and commitment while working with the Hand Up Youth Food Pantry. He enjoys his work because he finds it rewarding that a younger generation is making a difference in the community. Andrew also enjoys spending time with his Little Pal in the Jewish BIGPals program.
Tiffany is a Program Specialist for Teen Leadership, Supporting Jewish Single Parents, Adoption Alliance, and Hunger Advocacy Network programs. She previously worked in the Development Department at JFS. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and attended SDSU. Tiffany enjoys her time spent with the teens and admires that these young leaders make volunteering a priority in their hectic teenage lives.