Nominated and written by Jodi Fish
In June 2010, I was fortunate to participate in the first year of NCSY’s TJJ Ambassadors (TJJA) program. As a TJJA family, we learned Torah, grew as individuals and as a Jewish nation, were blessed with incredible advisors and rabbis, and had the opportunity to meet some of our new best friends. My new best friend was Allie Belfer, and it was like a match made in heaven. Even though we live hundreds of miles apart, Allie never fails to make me smile, brighten my day, and inspire me to become a better person. But most importantly, she inspires me to be a better Jew.
Allie is constantly encouraging me to ask questions and become more involved within the Jewish community. I am amazed at all that she has accomplished since TJJ Ambassadors. She began her journey to becoming more religious on Ambassadors, and continued it through her involvement in her NCSY chapter in Manalapan, New Jersey, a semester in Israel at Machon Maayan, and her time at both Brandeis University and Stern College for Women. I am truly inspired by all that Allie does and all that she encourages me to do.
I know that Allie has played an integral role in creating my identity as a Jewish woman. Since I have seen her active involvement, I have reached out to my local Jewish community and have been inspired to attend Neve Yerushalayim this summer. From spending Havdalah together over FaceTime to continuing to learn from our incredible advisors over group text messages to weekly pre-Shabbat phone calls, and finally, to my random, ordinary days that Allie brightens up with Torah, I am forever grateful that Hashem has brought her into my life. I know that as Allie continues to grow, she will spread her light to all those around her and continue to not only inspire me, but to inspire her family and friends too.