Opening conference of the Global Jewish Connections consultation, March 12-13, 2012.
The kick-off conference for grantees of the Global Jewish Connections Task force of UJA-Federation took place last week in New York. This conference was the first step in what will be a year long process to work with agency professionals and lay leadership in New York and Israel on deepening their capacity to develop programs and partnerships that focus on cultivating a deeper sense of connection and commitment to the Jewish People. The conference provided a forum for exploring why Jewish collective belonging is a core value in Jewish life and how to design educational experiences that allow for meaningful and continuous Jewish experiences that not only engage participants in collective actions, but that build towards internalizing the value of Peoplehood and fostering a lifelong commitment to the Jewish People.
Over 50 people from more than 20 different agencies participated throughout the conference in rich conversations that ranged from the conceptual to the very practical. Each agency engaged in a self-analysis of their program and a critical exchange with others in order to learn from the collective experience and wisdom of the group.
In the coming weeks, CJPE fellows will be holding one-on-one consultations with each of the grantee organizations to help them to clarify their goals and reflect on their program elements with greater attention to the educational process that can lead to creating engagement, building Peoplehood consciousness, and nurturing commitments.