This project began by identifying the local Jewish and Zionist organizations which conduct annual learning programs, and analyzing each program in order to identify where insertion of additional Zionist enrichment material into the curriculum would be most effective. An educational enrichment program was tailored to the needs of each organization. The programs incorporate Jewish learning and Jewish texts, and connect the richness of Jewish Heritage to the significance of Zionism and Israel in Jewish life.
The project includes regular bi-weekly follow-up meetings with organization representatives, in order to monitor implementation and assess the value of the program. Constant feedback from participants and staff facilitates adaptation of the program to better meet the needs of participants.
The project expects to reach more than 18 organizations, including the following: The Israel Center; WIZO South Africa; The Melton Group; Betar; Bnei Akiva; Habonim Dror; Netzer; Mizrachi; Limmud; The South Africa Jewish Board of Deputies; King David Schools and their affiliates; Herzlia Schools; Yeshiva College; Torah Academy; South African Zionist Federation Cape Council; KwaZulu Natal Zionist Federation; Eastern Cape Zionist Federation; and the South African Union for Progressive Judaism. The applicant works together with each of these bodies to develop an enrichment program which meets its needs.
The Project Director identifies local educators who can help implement the program. Experts from Israel and elsewhere travel to South Africa, and also present lectures via Multimedia. The lectures are recorded. The project includes development of a website, primarily for use by students, to facilitate further discussion of issues raised in the lectures. In addition to chat-rooms and forums, the website includes recorded lectures and additional learning materials. The learning process therefore continues well beyond the classroom. The project also facilitates weekly inserts in school and synagogue newsletters, providing positive information on Israel and Jewish identity.