Gandel Young Leader Award

Celebrating and recognizing Stand Up ABC alumni who are Standing Up and changing the world.

Two participants each year are selected to receive the Gandel Philanthropy – Young Leader Award, in recognition of their initiative pursuing social justice in the community.

“Each year we continue to see the positive impact that the Stand Up ABC B’nei Mitzvah Program is having on these young participants. The engagement they develop and the personal growth they experience is quite amazing. Through the program these young students witness what is happening outside their own world. The program also allows them to learn and explore social justice, understand the importance of having a strong moral compass and importantly make a difference through their own ‘Social Justice Action Project’” – Nicole Brittain (Grant Manager for Gandel Philanthropy’s Jewish and Israel programs) 


Congratulations to the 2018 Gandel Young Leader Award winners: Giselle Davey (Victoria) and Ruby Borer (NSW).

Giselle Davey

Ruby Borer

Giselle ultilised her love for swimming to support a cause close to her and her family’s hearts. After completing Stand Up ABC, as part of the UJEB Bat Mitzvah program, Giselle decided to raise funds in support of the Ardoch Youth Foundation. Giselle raised over $1300 by challenging herself to swim as many laps as physically possible over the course of one hour, and managed to cover an amazing 4km through her efforts.

“I graduated out of Stand Up ABC wanting to make a change. Making a change in the world is possible even if you are not in a position of power. Doing something small for a few people is still a significant change. Swimming is something that I enjoy, and wanted to combine my passion with helping others” – Giselle

Ruby has a strong belief in equal access to education. This was the motivation behind her project to collect study essentials for the benefit of school students in need, as part of her Bat Mitzvah. After completing Stand Up ABC, Ruby was inspired to ask fellow Bellevue Hill Public School students to donate educational stationery goods. She then dedicated her holiday break towards packaging them up for distribution via the Aboriginal Literacy and Numeracy Foundation (ALNF).

“Stand Up ABC taught me that becoming Bat Mitzvah isn’t only about becoming an adult, but is also about finding out what our responsibilities are in the real world and how we can create positive change” – Ruby


Congratulations to the 2017 Gandel Young Leader Award winners: Kayla Fox (Victoria) and Ariella Cappe (NSW).

Read about Kayla Fox’s book donation drive for Ardoch Youth Foundation here.

Read more about Ariella Cappe’s holiday art workshops in support of the Indigenous Literacy and Numeracy Foundation here.


Read about the 2016 Gandel Young Leader Award (NSW) winner: Jonathan Francis here

“This year I took part in Stand Up ABC and I learned that you can’t wait for things to occur. You have to do them yourself. I wanted my classmates to realise that the Holocaust isn’t just horrible pictures you see at the movies or on the Internet. It happened to real people and affected some of the people they know” – Jonathan Francis

Read about the 2016 Gandel Young Leader Award (Vic) winners: Anna Berkowitz & Keira Davis here


Read about the 2015 Gandel Young Leader Award winner: Avital Gottheiner here.


Read about the 2014 Gandel Young Leader Award winners, Abby Slonim and Liat Ziegler

“Many young people think, I don’t need to change the world. How am I going to change it if I’m only 12 years old? Someone else can change the world. If everyone thinks like that, and no one stands up to make a difference, the world will never change.” – Abby Slonim