Rekindling Jewish flame (illustration)
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Advancing Jewish European revival

Social innovators connect in Sweden to create new expressions of Jewish life

As Europe faces an acute identity crisis, 48 social justice activists, artists, environmentalists, media and tech gurus, educators, Israel advocates and intercultural dialoguers gathered Wednesday for four days at JPropel in Uppsala Sweden to address the challenges confronting the European Jewish renaissance and to enhance the role of up- and-coming Jewish leaders in shaping a Europe that embraces respect for all religions and cultures.


JPropel is a joint initiative of JHub, Paideia and ROI Community to propel forward a new generation of European Jewish leaders.


“In the shadow of the horrific massacre in Norway, JPropel shines a light on European Jewish initiatives which combat racism by reviving the spirit and culture of its victims,” ROI Community Executive Director Justin Korda said in a statement. “We are proud to join our European partners in rekindling the Jewish flame by supporting and nurturing European Jewish innovators who are remaking the Jewish world in their own image.”


Today, the statement said, Jews across Europe are revitalizing their communities and beyond. These social entrepreneurs are introducing inclusive, open and accessible ways of expressing Judaism and reaching out to unaffiliated Jews, as well as non-Jews. As a result, people are connecting and reconnecting to Jewish life tied to the continent’s history but thriving and looking toward a bright future.


JPropel offers a unique networking and skill-building opportunity to a core group of such change agents. JPropel participants will learn or strengthen useful tools and establish vital connections to address current challenges in all areas of Jewish life. At the heart of the program are professional workshops led by some of the world’s foremost experts in social entrepreneurship from Ashoka, Jumpstart and PresenTense, among others, as well as peer-to-peer training.


JPropel is about providing Europe’s budding Jewish leaders a space for growth. “I see leadership development happening before my very eyes,” said JHub Director Shoshana Boyd Gelfand. “These passionate individuals are learning organizational skills, developing vision, nurturing relationships, and gaining valuable experiences that they will leverage for the good of their communities.”


Paideia, The European Institute for Jewish Studies in Sweden, is marking its decennial. In the last 10 years, it has confronted the issues Jews face in Europe: the Jew as “other,” being part of Europe while being apart, and the challenge of multiculturalism to democracy.


“The time has now come to reflect, celebrate and continue building,” said Paideia Founding Director Barbara Lerner Spectre. “Reflect on the changes taking place in Europe through the lens of Jewish thought, celebrate those who are making change happen and renew the visions of developing European Jewish life in the coming decades.”



פרסום ראשון: 08.10.11, 18:11
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