- “In the beginning was the Word. And the Word became flesh. This is how it was at the beginning and how it is now as well. Language, the word, entails history, culture, tradition, the entire life of a people, the essence. Language is people. No people is conceived without a language, and no language is conceived without a people. Both are one and the same. Knowing one means knowing the other.” Sabine Ulibari
Yesterday, over 500 educators from all over Latin America attended the opening of a Jewish educator’s conference being held in Buenos Aires.
The two day program, called Chavura Chai, celebrates the continuity of the educational work that BAMÁ (a Spanish acronym for Beit Hamechanech Hayehudi or Home of the Jewish Educator) has been developing for the past 10 years. The agreement signed with AMIA (the JCC in Buenos Aires) the consolidation of a Management Board, the contribution of funds by Israel and the United States (Keren Pincus, the Claims Conference and others) and the transfer to a new headquarters place BAMÁ is in an excellent position to continue with educational projects to deepen and strengthen the Jewish-Zionist education in all its different forms.
[update] a look at the conference, Chavura CHAI: A Training Event and Beyond
about: BAMA (Beit Hamechanech Hayehudi) is a local community organization, founded by the Jewish Agency, that provides professional education services to every community institution that shares its mission as regards Jewish Zionist education without differentiating among denominations, the educational methodologies used in their activities (formal and non-formal) and their geographic location.
Why was BAMA founded?
Historically, Jewish education has been the glue that held the Argentine Jewish community together. At its peak, around a decade ago, there were more than 60 Jewish day schools featuring Jewish- Zionist education and Hebrew language at the core of their curriculum; with an enrollment of 21,000 students, representing 55% of the total youth population. A wide and vibrant network of youth organizations and community centers provided an additional layer of Jewish culture and education, while thousands participated each year in a variety of educational experiences in Israel. Argentina has hosted several teacher-training programs devoted to educators, covering not only the country but also Latin America.