Tradition! How PJ Library is Inspiring a Return to Jewish Roots in Russia

Published: 
April 10, 2019

Source: eJewish Philanthropy

 

PJ Library in Russia has swiftly become the predominant Jewish family engagement program in Russia, with more than 7,800 children and their families currently subscribed. Forty percent of subscribing families report that they have no other Jewish experience aside from PJ Library. PJ Library in Ukraine launched this month as a pilot program in Kyiv, Dnipro and Odessa.

PJ Library programs in Russia and in Ukraine are supported by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF), leading global partner Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG), strategic partner the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the Koum Family Foundation, and local partners and families.

On April 14, 2019 the inaugural PJ Library conference in Russia will bring together more than 100 community leaders and educators from across the former Soviet Union. Founder Harold Grinspoon, together with HGF trustees and leadership, will travel with GPG and JDC leadership and a delegation of philanthropists from around the world to join in initiating this exciting milestone.

In the post Soviet Jewish space, children often possess more Jewish knowledge than their parents because they were raised during a period of miraculous Jewish renewal in the late 1990’s. At that time, access to Jewish identity and educational programs became widely available for the first time in generations.

Today those children have become adults, have their own children, and have resumed the tradition of transmitting such knowledge from parent to child. With that family dynamic in place, we at the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) were eager to partner with PJ Library to strengthen Jewish life and identity in Russia.

Our partnership is instrumental to PJ Library in Russian, which launched in late 2015. For us, the partnership makes sense in so many ways – PJ Library enriches JCCs with vibrant jewish content and offers new connection points with members, promotes Jewish learning within families, and supports Jewish Family Service participants.

Read more at eJewish Philanthropy.

Updated: Apr. 18, 2019
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