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Pedagogy of Peoplehood

Shomer Achi presupposes an urgency to shift the Jewish self perception. For too long, true dialogue and understanding has been stifled by pre-existing modalities that limit the scope of the Jewish experience. America has either been the generous donor of aid to Israel or Israel has served as protector of disenfranchised Jews worldwide; a hierarchy of power that has served as the only framework within which Jews in Israel and the Diaspora have cooperated.

It is time for us to explore a world i
n which Jews everywhere can work together and contribute to one another. Our communities are able to cooperate as equals adding mutually to the greater goal of facilitating and enhancing the Jewish experience, a more wholistic view of what the aims of Zionism are today. Shomer Achi does not suppose that Israel now needs to ‘take care of’ America or that America needs to be the beneficiary of Israel. It is necessary to switch our understanding of how Jews worldwide can move forward and achieve greater cohesiveness as a people.

The Shomer Achi social service component emphasizes the common social issues which two seemingly unrelated communities face.  It also fosters investment in the well-being of the other, despite the geographic divide. The dialogue component emphasizes this new paradigm through facilitated conversations and text study. The leadership development component enables young adults to take control of their Jewish heritage and explore new ways to think, act, and lead.  By combining social service, dialogue, and leadership training, Shomer Achi effectively ushers in a new generation of leaders that appreciates peoplehood as dynamic, inclusive, and significant for every Jew.

Pedagogy of Peoplehood

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