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Jewish High School Students Give Up Winter Break to Volunteer in Los Angeles, CA

Genever McBain

(New York, NY -- December 20, 2007) -- American high school students have a myriad of vacation opportunities available during their school break, but this year 40 Jewish high school students from across the U.S. opted to forgo vacation and relaxation, choosing instead to participate in hands-on service projects in Los Angeles, CA. The program, Alternative Winter Break (AWB) will take place from December 23-30, 2007, and was organized by Young Judaea, the Zionist Youth Movement of Hadassah, in conjunction with Jewish Funds for Justice.

AWB will take participants out of their everyday surroundings and immerse them in an entirely different environment to engage in intensive community service and experiential learning designed to both enrich and transform. While in LA, they will learn about problems faced by members of communities with whom they otherwise might have had little or no direct contact.

AWB’s community service opportunities will focus on urban revitalization and environmental awareness and restoration. Participants will work directly with three local organizations – LA Family Housing, LA Neighborhood Services, and LA Eco-Village – and will spend five to seven hours a day on specific projects, earning a minimum of 25 community service hours through the program.

By integrating an ongoing educational component into the program, AWB participants will build community, explore their Jewish identity and leave with a deeper commitment to service. The ultimate goal is for this to springboard into a lifetime of active civic volunteerism, in which the tenets of community and tikun olam (repairing the world) become a part of everyday life.

For more information about Young Judaea, visit

For more information about Jewish Funds for Justice, visit www.jewishjustice.org.

Date: 12/20/2007 12:00:00 AM

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