The René Cassin Fellowship Program (RCFP) is a one year educational program on Judaism and human rights for young professionals (ages 25-35). It has hubs in New York, London and Jerusalem, with 12 Fellows in each hub. Over the course of a year, Fellows will gather for monthly study sessions (evenings) that explore human rights through the lens of Jewish values and the Jewish historical experience. The program also involves intensive interaction between the three centers of Jewish life, a 9-day study tour to Israel in June and hands-on internships in institutions working on human rights and social justice issues.
RCFP Program Objectives
- To deepen and broaden participants' knowledge, understanding and engagement of Jewish visions of a just society through the study of Jewish classical and modern sources and contemporary international human rights law.
- To wrestle with the dilemmas and value-conflicts raised by the interplay of international human rights law, Jewish tradition and the contemporary social and political reality of the Jewish People and the State of Israel. This will be achieved through the examination of examples from Israel, diaspora Jewish communities and other societies.
- To strengthen the social capital of the Jewish people by engaging socially/politically active young Jews (ages 25-35) from three continents in a program of study, cross-cultural dialogue, travel and internships.
- To galvanize a movement of young Jewish social activists who will be equipped with the skills and passion to promote social justice and human rights locally and globally.
With lead funding from the New York UJA/Federation, the RCFP is designed to reach the increasing numbers of young Jews that are distancing themselves from their relationship with Israel and the organized Jewish community. In many cases, these young Jews find their values more aligned with human rights organizations than they do with the Jewish establishment. The RCFP’s deep commitment to human rights as well as to an affirmative identification with the Jewish people and the State of Israel means that it is capable of reaching a constituency that is often beyond the reach of the Jewish community.
Applying for the RCFP
The RCFP is open to young professionals aged 25-35 with a demonstrated interest in social justice work, who are based in London, New York or Jerusalem. Recruitment for the 2014 RCFP will begin in October of 2013.
See the René Cassin Fellowship Program web page for more information and registration.