New Israeli Government Initiative Could Impact Relationship Between Young Jews, Israel

June 13, 2013
BY Maayan Jaffe

There are high-level discussions taking place with the Office of the Prime Minister in Israel about an initiative that could significantly impact the relationship between young American Jews and the State of Israel.

According to an email that was widely disseminated among Jewish communal professional and philanthropic leaders, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is interested in increasing the number of young Jews traveling to Israel on a variety of meaningful experiences “through the expansion of current approaches and development of new ones.”

Among other initiatives: improving Israel education and engagement in various Jewish communal institutions through both Israeli emissaries and local educators; creating “Israel-engaged campuses” to reach 240,000 undergraduate and 70,000 graduate Jewish students on 100 North American college campuses (and perhaps a handful of others around the world); and doubling the number of young professionals who make aliyah.

More than one source involved in these discussions said the prime minister is interested in allocating government funds to make this happen. One source, who requested anonymity, quotes the allocation as $100 million. That number could not be confirmed.

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