Based in New York, with a presence across a dozen cities in the US and Canada, Freidom supports formerly and ITC (in the community/closet) Orthodox individuals who wish to live life aligned with their personal values.
Freidom provides social and emotional support and hands-on education on societal norms through social and cultural events. At Freidom members find a warm and welcoming community where they develop friendships, a sense of belonging and acceptance helping them rebuild what was lost due to ostracization by their community of origin. Additionally, Freidom events provide a platform for members to explore new cultural experiences of which they may have been deprived due to their sheltered upbringing. Furthermore, Freidom fosters a judgement-free atmosphere where members support each other and feel comfortable to ask questions, take risks, and gain confidence in navigating mainstream society.
Freidom hosts 160 events annually for 1,100+ members, ranging from casual dinners, museums, outdoor activities, and live theater, to Holiday parties, Prom, and is currently planning its first annual freiFEST (Freidom Festival) where members will get to celebrate their personal freedom together.
Note: While there is no fee to join our organization, we suggest that you donate $1 per event (for events you choose to attend) which goes towards covering Freidom's operation cost.
You must be a minimum of eighteen years of age to join our events. Most events are adults-only. Some events are family-friendly. Unless explicitly specified, events are adults-only.
"Frei" is a term for a formerly Orthodox Jew. ("OTD" is a term for Off the Derekh-- or off the path of Orthodox observance).
Member's Submission: "Freidom is a social support organization for individuals from formerly-Orthodox backgrounds. We meet on a regular basis for good food, thoughtful conversation, and other social events to make new friends. Most of us were raised with strong attachments to Orthodox Jewish observance, but, while we are each on our own journey, now live mostly secular lives. Our past unites us, and we take from it what we still find meaningful, but we otherwise live simply as members of the world community.
We're a friendly bunch who are always eager to meet new people who are on the Frei journey, whether formerly religious or just exploring. So feel free to request to join our group, and we'll let you know if you seem to be a fit.
Freidom hosts social events throughout North America, with a strong focus on NYC, Rockland County, North and South Jersey. Additional NA regional areas include: Baltimore/DC, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, South Florida, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Toronto.
Social events include, dining out, potluck dinners, movies, musical performances, museums, live theater, outdoor activities, cultural events, and anything else our members are interested in. We're always looking for new experiences, so suggestions are welcome and encouraged."
Screening process to protect Freidom members' identity: -All Freidom members can attend events taking place on Shabbat. -Only “vouched” Freidom members can attend events taking place on weekdays/weeknights.
How to become a “vouched” Freidom member (only one of the four options required): [Please note: You do NOT need to break Shabbat in order to become a vouched member]
1. A current “vouched” Freidom member -who knows you in-person- vouches for you. [The above is not an option for Frei-ITC (In the Community/Closet) individuals. Anyone ITC must meet in-person with a Freidom staff person, both for vetting purposes as well as for going over safety details and procedures specifically for ITC individual.] or 2. Attend a Shabbat Freidom event. or 3. Meet in person with a Freidom staff person or an assigned vouched Freidom member. or 4. or Have a Zoom video call with a Freidom organizer.
Freidom was founded in loving memory of a beloved friend Rachel Nove 6/13/1980 - 1/28/2010