JDC, BBYO LAUNCH OVERSEAS SERVICE FELLOWSHIP
New York, NY, July 14, 2010 –The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and BBYO launched a new overseas service fellowship for BBYO alumni, the JDC-BBYO Global Service Fellowship. This new initiative will place four BBYO alumni in JDC’s Jewish Service Corps for one year to work with overseas Jewish communities on their most pressing welfare, Jewish renewal and humanitarian needs and develop teen programming and connections to Jewish life through BBYO’s innovative leadership programming and international network. The JDC-BBYO Global Service Fellowship is receiving initial support from the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation.
“The JDC-BBYO Global Service Fellowship speaks to the definitive power of service to transform the lives of young Jews eager for a chance to make a difference in the world. We are truly fortunate that our long-time partners and friends at the Schusterman Family Foundation are once again helping us strengthen our important ties to BBYO and to Jewish service around the globe,” said JDC’s CEO Steven Schwager.
In addition to their day-to-day service agenda, JDC-BBYO Global Service Fellows will help connect North American Jewish teens with their peers abroad and facilitate the participation of these teen peers in BBYO gatherings. This connection speaks directly to BBYO’s teen-led agenda addressed by the International Teen Co-President Jeremy Sherman: “We couldn’t be more excited to strengthen BBYO’s ties to the global Jewish community. As BBYO teens, we feel a strong connection to Jewish teens everywhere, and we have long felt that bringing Jewish youth from around the world closer together should be a priority. It is inspiring to see that vision become a reality.”
“We are excited about the collaboration between BBYO and JDC, who will be working in close partnership to engage Jewish teens, strengthen global Jewish community and involve young professionals in meaningful service work,” said Lisa Eisen, national director of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation and a member of BBYO’s Board of Directors. “This initiative will forge important connections between Jewish teens across the globe as they work to repair the world and build a vibrant Jewish future.”
BBYO staff will also provide training as part of JDC’s Jewish Service Corps Orientation and contribute to long-distance learning opportunities for the Fellows. Fellowship placements could include locations such as India, Turkey, Israel, Poland, Estonia, Serbia, or Ukraine. Interested BBYO alumni can learn more about the program at www.JDC.org/JewishServiceCorps
JDC’s existing collaborations with BBYO include a growing number of BBYO alumni applying to JDC’s Jewish Service Corps, BBYO teens raising thousands of dollars for JDC’s global programs, and JDC providing updates and speakers on global issues to Jewish teens. Most recently, a former BBYO International Teen President, Shauna Ruda, served as a JDC Jewish Service Corps Fellow working to connect Turkish Jewish teens and the community to BBYO.
About the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
Since 1914, JDC has given global expression to the principle that all Jews are responsible for one another. Working today in over 70 countries, JDC acts on behalf of North America’s Jewish communities and others to rescue Jews in danger, provide relief to those in distress, revitalize overseas Jewish communities and help Israel overcome the social challenges of its most vulnerable citizens. JDC also provides non-sectarian emergency relief and long-term development assistance worldwide. For more information, please visit www.JDC.org.
BBYO is the leading pluralistic Jewish teen movement aspiring to involve more Jewish teens in more meaningful Jewish experiences. For more than 85 years, AZA and BBG chapters in communities around the world have been providing exceptional leadership programs and identity enrichment experiences, shaping the lives of 250,000 alumni who are among the most prominent figures in business, politics, academia, the arts and Jewish communal life. Through the PANIM Institute for Jewish Leadership and Values of BBYO, which runs service and advocacy programs for more than 10,000 Jewish teens, BBYO is positioned to create a stronger movement of Jewish teens committed to service, advocacy and philanthropy. Now, more than ever, BBYO offers unique opportunities for teens to connect with one another, serve their communities, navigate the college admissions process and travel the world, providing each participant with a network of lifelong friends, a perspective which adds value and meaning to life and a shared commitment to strengthening the Jewish future. For more information on BBYO, please visit www.bbyo.org.