PresenTense to Launch in Seven New Cities

Jerusalem, Israel, Sept 7, 2011 – PresenTense is excited to announce that in the 2011-12 season, it will expand its social entrepreneur fellowships to reach 13 programs in 10 cities around the world. In addition to seven new programs in Chicago, Washington DC, Cleveland, Kansas City, Nachlaot Jerusalem, Moscow, and a global fellowship with the WCJCC, PresenTense will also renew its partnerships with existing communities in Boston, Philadelphia, New York, Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv, and will operate its sixth summer Global Institute.

The fellowships, run as part of the Community Entrepreneur Partnership (CEP) developed by PresenTense, are owned and managed by local partners in each of the cities, including Federations, JCCs, and in Moscow, the JDC.

The Community Entrepreneur Partnership is a community-driven accelerator for social entrepreneurs, tapping volunteer talents of young adults and older, more experienced professionals to provide local Jewish entrepreneurs with the tools and skills to grow their innovative ideas into sustainable ventures. Local volunteers spend six months working with their local institution to identify challenges facing the Jewish community, recruit community entrepreneurs who have innovative solutions, and then support those entrepreneur fellows through five months of venture development through seminars, case studies, and focused workshops.

The volunteers and community entrepreneurs engaged in the 13 fellowships around the world will join five years of program alumni who have together launched 155 ventures in the fields of Jewish education, social action, environment, philanthropy and the arts – ventures whose second order participants have reached over two-hundred thousand. This new cohort will begin its application process in October 2011, and begin the fellowship program in January 2012. At the end of the fellowship, in May 2012, the entrepreneurs will present their new ventures to their local communities at public launch nights in over a dozen locations around the world.

“We are extremely excited for this North American expansion and partnerships with the Chicago JCC, and Cleveland, Kansas City and Washington DC Federations,” says Shelby Zitelman, Director of North American Programs. “Each community brings unique opportunities, challenges and objectives to our collective goal of Jewish communal engagement and innovation.”

Ariel Beery, founder and co-Director of PresenTense, looks forward to the development of cross-cultural conversations. “By engaging Jews from around the world on the same timeline and equipping them with common tools and building blocks, PresenTense helps them build local and global solutions to the Jewish people’s current challenges. This year-round rhythm will illustrate what happens when the Jewish People think, act and work together and in parallel towards fixing the world.”

Applications for 11 of the 13 fellowships open in early October, but interested innovators can fill out a pre-application. Additionally, anyone interested in volunteering their time or expertise can contact their local fellowship via