2011 Institute for Educators
Twenty-four Jewish educators from 16 different states and two Canadian provinces gathered July 10-14, 2011, in suburban Boston for the Jewish Women’s Archive’s (JWA) summer Institute, The Power of Our Stories: Jews and the Civil Rights Movement.

The program began with each person telling a two-minute story about an object and the Jewish woman connected to it. From their homes in places as far away as Whitefish, MT and Winnipeg, Manitoba, participants brought rolling pins, jewelry, recipes, photographs, prayer books, and even in one case an edible object—blintzes left over from that morning’s breakfast with a beloved grandmother—that evoked stories of Jewish women who were important in their lives.

After sharing their personal stories, the participants began the more formal part of the Institute, a series of sessions designed to introduce JWA’s Living the Legacy social justice curriculum.

Among the highlights were presentations by Dr. Debra Schultz, author of Going South: Jewish Women in the Civil Rights Movement, by Rabbi Jill Jacobs, director of Rabbis for Human Rights and author of There Shall Be No Needy: Pursuing Social Justice through Jewish Law and Tradition, and an interview with Vicki Gabriner about her experiences as a civil rights worker in the South. By the end of the Institute, the participants had begun to develop plans for using Living the Legacy in a wide age-range of educational settings.
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