A movement is blossoming that puts service at the heart of Jewish life. We are investing in it to inspire, educate and connect young Jews eager to make a difference in the world.
We live in a time of unparalleled prosperity in some parts of the world, deep impoverishment in others and a growing willingness of the next generation to strive to bridge the gap between the two. In Jewish tradition, this desire to serve is captured best when people express a desire to engage in “tikkun olam,” often translated as “repairing the world,” which teaches us that we have a duty to help make our world a better place.
Young Jews are among those at the nerve center of a growing movement of young people who are passionate about their ability to make a positive impact on the world. They do not just want to pay to build the trenches—they actually want to work in them. Such a lofty goal demands our attention and deserves our support.
We believe that service should be a defining element of Jewish life, and we see it as a prime way to help young Jews bring Jewish identity and values into the forefront of their efforts to serve the common good. We envision a generation of Jews who are committed to service and who build a powerful force to dramatically and positively impact communities and individuals in need around the world.
To reach this goal, we encourage all of the young adult organizations we support to infuse service and volunteer opportunities into their programming and, where relevant, to ground these experiences in Jewish values and learning. We also support initiatives, partnerships and collaborations that:
- Enhance and multiply opportunities for young people to serve in Jewish service programs;
- Provide young Jews serving in nonsectarian programs with Jewish framing, connections and experiences; and
- Invest in the leadership, innovation and infrastructure needed to increase the resources, scale, quality and impact of these opportunities and programs.