Think Big to Make Change Happen

The opening of the UJC’s General Assembly last night also witnessed the launch of  JGooders, a groundbreaking online arena for Jewish Good Doing. Drawing on some of the best concepts from the U.S. and U.K., and focusing solely on Jewish and Israeli charities, JGooders philosophy is simple: to increase the world of good deeds and good doers by connecting social initiators with social enablers.

I had the opportunity a few days ago to sit with two of the founders, long-time communal professionals Ronit Dolev and Smadar Fogel. With the backdrop of a beautiful November afternoon at the Tel Aviv Port (highly recommended to all) watching the sun set over the horizon, I was treated to their vision, a well thought out business plan and a site demo.

Here in Ronit’s own words, A Dream Comes True:

For me, in many ways, it is a dream come true.

So yes, it is exciting, full of hope and expectation and at the same time, pretty scary.

For a 5th generation Israeli, my encounter with the Jewish community of Chicago at the age of 24 was a real turning point. Since then, I have spent most of my adult life committed to enhancing the connections and developing relationships between Israelis and Jewish people all over the world.

Undoubtedly it has satisfied my own need to better understand my personal Jewish identity by addressing the most fascinating and complex issues of Jewish continuity, nationhood, religion and Peoplehood.

I think that probably, this is what led me to the founding of Partnership 2000 in 1993, together with my terrific partner, then, as now, Judy Stern Peck along with many wonderful people. Many told us over the years that in fact we introduced a paradigm change in the Israel – world Jewry relationship. With almost a million participants we humbly accept the compliment.

JGooders is yet another attempt to make a quantum leap: to provide added meaning by developing a global network of Jews and Israelis involved in the third sector (the not for profit organizations). This is where we all meet to do good, to give back to our communities, to introduce change, to improve lives, to care for each other, to strengthen the weaker parts of our society, our people, to ensure continuity, to invest in the younger generation, to make an impact on our lives, our children’s lives, the future.

Sounds ambitious? Well…it is. But I have always been told that one need to think big to make change happen. So we are gathering the best (we still do) and we put our faith in you: in your wisdom to take advantage of this bold idea, bring the platform to life, make it serve your needs and enable you to do good.

Technology provides us today with a great tool to cross oceans, bridge gaps and connect. Let us use it well to make our Jewish and Israeli world a better one.