New initiative brings thousands of women to Israel

Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, JWRP announce $12.5M initiative to bring thousands of Jewish women from around the world to Israel.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

JWRP Founding Director Lori Palatnik
JWRP Founding Director Lori Palatnik
Photo: Shmulik Almany

The Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project (JWRP) and Israel’s Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, headed by MK Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home), announced an unprecedented initiative Sunday at a special ceremony during the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual policy conference in Washington, D.C.

The $12.5 million project is designed to provide 5,600 women from 26 countries around the world with a life-changing nine-day trip to Israel as part of JWRP’s expanding “Momentum” Israel experience.

Unlike “Taglit” or “Birthright” programs that sponsor young Jewish adults, the JWRP’s “flagship project” is aimed to inspire the Jewish mothers to make a greater impact on her family and community.

A significant factor of the project is JWRP’s work with 150 different organizations from around the world that help strengthen these global communities and their bonds with Israel – and promote local leadership.

The project further aims to bring women from Jewish communities facing increased threats of anti-Semitism and economic hardship, including Argentina, Cuba, the former Soviet Union, France, the U.S., and Canada.

“This historic agreement allows us to continue to build a global movement united in the mission of empowering women to change the world through Jewish values,” said Lori Palatnik, founding director of the JWRP.

“Our philosophy from the beginning has always been: inspire a woman, you inspire a family. Inspire enough families, you can change a community. Inspire enough communities, you can change the world. This partnership is key to making this a reality.” 

Since 2009, more than 7,300 women have participated in “Momentum” trips, journeying across Israel and connecting deeply with their Jewish heritage as they encompass everything from Jewish values to contemporary Israeli society.

Naftali Bennett, Minister of Education and Diaspora Affairs, said, "The importance of the partnership with JWRP relies on the revolutionary project to provide an exceptional opportunity for women from different backgrounds and different places to strengthen their identity and their connection to Israel. This is a project that demonstrates the commitment of the Government of Israel towards Diaspora Jewry.”

“This ‘flagship project’ is part of our ongoing efforts to strengthen Israel’s relationship with Diaspora communities around the world,” said Dvir Kahana, director-general of the Ministry of Diaspora Affairs. “We are extremely proud of our strategic partnership with the JWRP. We share the vision of empowering Jewish women worldwide as leaders of the next generation with the ability and drive to raise children who are proud of their identity and strongly connected to Israel. I am hopeful that this partnership will grow and become a monumental game changer in the Jewish world.”

The JWRP was founded in 2008, with the mission of empowering women to change the world through Jewish values. Its major project, “Momentum,” is a nine-day, highly subsidized life-changing journey to Israel.  Since 2014, the JWRP has partnered with Israel's Ministry of Diaspora Affairs.

Photo: Shmulik Almany