In accordance with the mandate and ideals of the International B'nai Brith Youth Organization (BBYO), the Lake Ontario Region (LOR) is dedicated to helping Jewish youth understand their history and culture while developing leadership skills through various activities and community service programs. BBYO was first introduced in Ontario as early as the 1920s but LOR was not officially established until after the Second World War. In 1929 the B'nai Brith Toronto Lodge sponsored the first youth chapter with 35 young men as bearers. Membership steadily grew overtime and new chapters began opening throughout the province. By the end of the Second World War, the rapid growth of new lodges and chapters resulted in the formal creation of the Southern Ontario Region (SOR), LOR's precursor. SOR included chapters in Toronto, Hamilton, Kitchener, London, Guelph, and Peterborough. By the 1990s, its name had changed to LOR and chapters from Buffalo, Rochester, and Upstate New York were added to its jurisdiction.
LOR is organized into a series of chapters comprised of AZA (Aleph Zadik Aleph) for boys and BBG (B'nai Brith Girls) for girls with a focus on teens from grades 8-12. Chapters are supervised by an adult board and are youth-led. Members are democratically elected to office by their peers and have control over planning and organizing programs, which include dances, sports activities, festivals, fundraisers, group discussions, community services, trips abroad, and weekend conventions with other BBYO members. Summer camp programs are also offered with the goal of building interpersonal and leadership skills. LOR remains faithful to its original purpose of providing learning experiences for its youth and instilling within them the desire to contribute to their communities as confident and responsible adults.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records documenting the activities and programs of the B'nai Brith Youth Organization Lake Ontario Region. Included are meeting notices, agendas and minutes, correspondence, reports and evaluations, constitutions and by-laws, policies, financial records, membership statistics, brochures and booklets, scholarship and award applications, manuals, grant requests, photographs, scrapbooks, event invitations,newspaper clippings, programs, lists, publications, and flyers. Records such as statistics and by-laws also document the Laurentian Region, Red River Region, North Star Region, Evergreen Region and Northwest Canada Region.
Fonds is arranged into sixteen series: 1. BBYO Canada; 2. Regional Board of Directors; 3. Administration; 4. Relations; 5. Correspondence; 6. Reports and Evaluations; 7. Financial Accounts; 8. BBYO Youth Groups; 9. Chapter Advisors; 10. Chapters; 11. Membership; 12. Fundraising; 13. Scholarships and Awards; 14. Programs and Events; 15. Published Material; and 16. Photographs. There are two files attached to the fonds level.
Associated material note: additional material can be found in the B'nai Brith Canada fonds at Library and Archives Canada.
B’nai Brith Youth Organization. Lake Ontario Region
Copyright is held by the Ontario Jewish Archives. Please contact the Archives to obtain permission prior to use.
Scrapbooks are in fragile condition with loose material inside. Some photographs are ripped, torn, and/or faded. The wire recordings need to be reveiwed and, if the contents are usable, digitized.
B'nai Brith Youth Organization, Lake Ontario Region