The Campaign for Youth Engagement recently received a
grant from the Jim Joseph Foundation to develop a strategic plan for expanding
our reach to our Jewish youth and upgrading the centrality of youth engagement
in our system. We have hired the consulting partnership of BTW informing
change and the Center for Leadership Initiatives (CLI) to coordinate these
The Learning phase of the consultancy includes data
collection (both internal and external documents that cover a wide range of
topics including: history of youth engagement, Israel, camping, NFTY,
URJ-congregational relationship, day schools, and youth professional training),
focus groups, and interviews.
As part of the Consultancy we invited individuals from
across the Reform movement and beyond to serve as Advisors to the
process. The Advisors have served as a sounding board to the consulting
group, offering feedback via email to organizational and programmatic ideas
being explored for the URJ's future. At the end of May, the Advisors will
gather at regional meetings to reflect on a series of scenarios and strategic
options developed in the process.
We expect our final strategic planning documents at the
end of the summer.