From June 28th-July 2nd Jewish leaders from 29 countries will meet in Ramat Gan for the fourth annual ROI Global Summit for Young Jewish Innovators. The event is being held at Kfar Maccabiah, Israel’s Olympic village. The program will bring together young leaders from around the world that are engaged in projects to improve the face of local Jewish communities. The summit was created through a partnership with the Center for Leadership Initiatives and Taglit-Birthright Israel.
The Center for Leadership Initiatives was founded in 2006 as a private operating foundation dedicated to developing Jewish leaders in communities around the world. Lynn Schusterman, founder of the Summit told Ynet, “The participants at this conference work in a wide variety of areas, yet each of them is an innovator in his or her field. The link between them is that they are all seeking to change the world and to contribute to a dynamic future for the Jewish people.”
Photos: Adi Cohen
Leaders of the futureFor this years’ event, the CLI received nearly 600 applications and of those only 120 select participants were chosen. The Summit will give these young leaders the opportunity to network and share lessons on project implementation. During the summit educational workshops are offered in social entrepreneurship, technology, public speaking and fundraising.
Executive Director of the Center for Leadership Initiatives, Yonatan Gordis told Ynet, “The purpose of the gathering is to advance innovation in Jewish fields by enhancing and improving the management skills of ROI participants and to foster connections and collaborations among them.”
He added, “These young people are deeply connected to their local communities, but also care deeply about the land of Israel. Their fresh perspectives, their innovation and their enthusiasm all point to a vibrant future for the Jewish people.”
These annual summits have fostered a range of creative projects in the past. Sarah Lefton, an alumnus of the ROI leadership summit, has implemented an online Jewish learning site called, “Project G-dcast”. The website explains weekly torah portions using cartoon animation trying to connect Judaism to a new generation. Another program alumnus, Lindsay Litowiitz, developed a web project called “Four Corners”. The website creates a forum for young Jews from around the world to share their personal experiences and stories.
Young leaders at this year Summit will have the opportunity to utilize ROI Seed Grant Funds to launch pilot projects. Depending on the success of these pilot ventures, participants can pitch their ideas to larger foundations for increased funding.
This years participants hail from the following 29 countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Israel, Latvia, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Paraguay, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela.