When you hear the Hebrew phrase, Tikkun Olam, what initially comes to mind? Most folks think of this Jewish value as healing, repairing, or rebuilding the world. Their call to action is typically in the form of physically doing something such as lending a helping hand, or one that is monetary, such as making a charitable donation. Tikkun Olam may be expressed in many different forms such as brining a community together – all are acts of kindness in some way. As I have been reflecting over what is now my 3rd season of programming with Federation at The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee, one could say, that which Federation’s Program Team does is also a form of Tikkun Olam. The programs and events we strive to provide our community are aligned with the tenet of our Federation’s mission, Tikkun Olam. In upping our game this season to one that is “chai-brid” – live and in person or virtually, we too, are doing our part, to help heal by bringing our community together.
Supporting The Federation’s Mission through Programming
The Federation’s Program Department has many goals beyond purely engagement. Did you know in addition to supporting Federation’s overall mission and tenets, we support the JFSM strategic mission priorities with age-appropriate programming that intentionally educates, excites, enlightens, energizes, enriches, and entertains from “babies to bubbies”? Much goes in to how we create our program season. We thoughtfully hand-select programs that strategically represent this exact Jewish value of Tikkun Olam. Programs and events of advocacy, service, acts of kindness, social justice, and preserving the health and wellbeing of our community and our planet. We have broadened our outreach and engagement to the population at large; the cross-cultural and inter-faith platform through affinity community organizations, schools, universities, libraries, places of worship and media outlets.
What you also may not know is that the priorities of the Federation’s Program Department stem from Jewish tradition: L’dor v’Dor – From Generation to Generation. Our programs and events will hopefully pass on the values of our culture and traditions and enable Jews, especially younger Jews, to explore and deepen their connections to Israel and the Jewish people. Through our community population study, we know many more households that are Jewish are living in a broader geographic area than before, most of which are disconnected to traditional Jewish organizations or Jewish programs and opportunities. Through engagement on our new campus, we will connect Jews to Jewish Life and to each other! Our programming will support these strategic imperatives by offering unique opportunities to engage more people!