Jewish Agency’s “Jewish Peace Corps” Expands to Third African Country
New Uganda center to join existing centers in Ghana, South Africa, Mexico, Israel; Jewish volunteers from Israel and around the world to work on projects in education, healthcare, agriculture, arts
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL – The Jewish Agency for Israel’s Project TEN—known as the “Jewish Peace Corps”—is partnering with a coalition of organizations to join a new volunteer center in Namulanda, Uganda. The center will be run in partnership with Brit, a coalition of organizations that include the Israel Volunteer Association, Inspiration Arts for Humanity, and Brit Olam, who have been operating in Uganda for the past ten years. The center will bring together Jewish young people from Israel and around the world to engage in volunteer work with distressed populations in the area.
The Uganda volunteer center is centrally located in the town of Namulanda, between the capital city of Kampala and Entebbe. The volunteers will concentrate on sustainable development and infrastructure work for communal projects in the fields of education, healthcare, agriculture, and the arts. Amongst other things, the volunteers will run healthcare projects in poverty-stricken neighborhoods in Kampala and will work in elementary schools in nearby villages. They will also help create a local youth movement and develop a leadership group that will receive intensive training in technology and education. The first group of volunteers arrived at the center in September.
This is Project TEN’s third volunteer center in Africa, joining the existing center in Winneba, Ghana and another new center in Durban, South Africa. Project TEN centers also currently exist in Oaxaca, Mexico and Harduf, Israel. The Israeli center works primarily with Bedouin communities and with groups with special needs. Additional Project TEN centers are expected to be opened in Latin America and East Asia in the near future.
Project TEN is based on values of service and Jewish activism, offering Jewish young people from Israel and communities around the world opportunities to volunteer in various places around the world for several months, in partnership with local organizations. Project TEN director Yarden Zornberg notes that Project TEN centers, which sends out some 450 volunteers per year from all over the Jewish world, enable young people to combine their desire to get to know the world with their desire to take part in repairing it together with their peers worldwide. At the end of their volunteer period, these young people return to their countries of origin strongly motivated to engage in activism in their communities and worldwide. Learn more at tenprogram.org
The Jewish Agency for Israel is the largest Jewish nonprofit organization in the world. Founded in 1929, The Jewish Agency was instrumental in founding and building the State of Israel and has brought more than three million Jews home to the Jewish state, including tens of thousands this past year alone. Today the organization serves as the primary link between Israel and the Jewish world, bringing young Jews to experience life in the Jewish state and sending young Israelis to share their country with Jewish communities around the world. The Jewish Agency works to narrow social gaps within Israel and empower all segments of Israeli society while dispatching Israeli young people and their worldwide Jewish peers to volunteer in underprivileged communities in Africa, Latin America, and Israel’s socioeconomic periphery. The organization serves as the Jewish world’s first responder, prepared to rescue and bring Jews home to Israel from countries where they are at risk and addressing emergency situations in Israel and Jewish communities abroad.