As part of its “Judaism Without Walls” initiative, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) has launched a comprehensive online anthology of Russian-language informal Jewish education materials, http://activi.JDC.org.il. The website is the internet companion to a 14-volume, 3,000 page compilation that includes programs, lessons, games, and activities for all age groups. Both were featured at a major JDC Jewish educators’ conference in Moscow in late October.
“We are incredibly proud that JDC can help ensure that Russian-speaking Jews, wherever they may be, have a free online vehicle to learn about their religious and cultural tradition like never before,” said JDC CEO Steven Schwager. “It’s heartening to know that twenty years after the fall of communism, hundreds of Jewish educators from across the former Soviet Union gathered recently in Moscow to celebrate this historic launch with us.”
The ACTIVI website and anthology contain a wide-ranging curriculum of informal Jewish educational materials. Topics range from Judaism in the modern world—to Jewish holidays—to the State of Israel—to the relationship between Judaism and science, among many other themes. A three-year project, ACTIVI was authored primarily by the Chais Center at Hebrew University, Machanaim, and the Institute of Informal Education headed by Dima and Natasha Zicer.
JDC is distributing the anthology to Jewish institutions throughout the former Soviet Union. Publication of the anthology was supported by the Charles Hoffman Endowment Fund, among others. Educational institutions and Jewish educators interested in the anthology can contact activi@JDC.org.il.