Whether in regards to pandemic recovery or in response to ongoing crises, volunteers continue to play a critical role in global humanitarian action and social responsibility – and in 2022 that included Shalom Corps.
Thanks to the efforts of 30 Shalom Corps partners, more than 6,000 Jewish volunteers took action by joining international Jewish service-learning programs last year. Through Shalom Corps partnered programs, young Jews from 40+ countries dedicated over 26,000 days cumulatively to volunteer service.
Active around the world, these volunteers contributed to humanitarian projects addressing education, nutrition and food security, water accessibility, infrastructure and social services, climate action, heritage service, and more; experiencing humanitarianism as a practice of tikkun olam and tzedek, expressing Jewish values while reflecting on their Jewish identity through their service.
With support from the Shalom Corps Global Immersive Service program, partners organized volunteer groups for 79 humanitarian projects hosted in 27 different countries.
Some of the programs included Hashomer Hatzair volunteers who facilitated resiliency-building workshops within local initiatives in Brazil, Uruguay, Italy, and Romania. Through Project TEN, six Jewish groups traveled to volunteer in education, agriculture, and sustainable development projects alongside communities in Ghana, Uganda, South Africa, Mexico, Cambodia, and Israel. NCSY volunteers also served in community-led initiatives in North America and Europe, including combatting urban food deserts, repairing affordable housing, rebuilding disaster-affected infrastructure, and providing social services for Ukrainian refugees.
Continuing with support from Shalom Corps and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the NALA Foundation scaled their WASH on Wheels project in Ethiopia, achieving their goal to provide and maintain clean water access to 150 schools and 150,000 children by the end of 2022.
With support from the Shalom Corps Heritage Global Impact Initiative, 10 volunteer groups also dedicated time to preserving Jewish heritage and historical sites in underserved Jewish communities. Through Hillel CASE, Ukrainian volunteers coordinated to renovate synagogues and Jewish community centers into protective shelters following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and install accessible infrastructure in community spaces in Ukraine, Czech Republic, France, and Poland. Jewish teens from across the Beitar movement gathered in Brazil, Chile, Spain, and Uruguay to volunteer in Jewish cemetery restorations, preserving community heritage with dignity and respect for the generations before us.
Another 3,500 volunteers from Israel and Europe joined together with Zikaron Basalon and Shalom Corps for a special project serving Jews who used to live behind the Iron Curtain and recording the testimony of Holocaust survivors.
We are grateful to all our partners and the Jewish volunteers around the world for their dedication to meaningful service and commitment to social responsibility in 2022. With great respect and recognition, we are proud to support their spirit of volunteerism and expression of Jewish values.