KAHAL UK MISSION AND HISTORY

KAHAL has found that UK Jewish and wider British communities benefit tremendously from the involvement of motivated local and international youth. Furthermore, in a space which has historically been dominated by Israel-focused travel and opportunities, KAHAL UK has demonstrated and facilitated the opportunity to connect Jewishly throughout the entire global community. The impact is two-fold. One one hand, host families and British student communities blossom when diverse Jewish voices are incorporated and heard. KAHAL encourages local communities to connect with Jewish values and welcome Jews from around the world into British Jewish communal life. On the other hand, for our British students engaging internationally, impact is felt through a deeper connection to Judaism in the next generation, bringing Jewish and secular values including Global Jewish Peoplehood and diversity back to the wider British community. All of this is accomplished through leveraging the transformational nature and unique opportunity presented by overseas study and travel to build relationships between Jewish youth and their peers abroad.

KAHAL launched in the UK in an attempt to connect incoming international students to British Jewish communities and saw large-scale success with thousands benefitting from immersive educational, social and cultural experiences within the local Jewish community. After a number of British Jewish students started reaching out to get involved when they were studying abroad, KAHAL launched a year-long independent research project to assess the opportunity in the UK to provide for British students in the global Jewish landscape. The results were overwhelming, discovering hundreds of British students going on global exchange programmes, and even more students than expected abroad in the UK each year. Thus, KAHAL UK was founded in 2019 with the unique mission of impacting study abroad students to and from the UK.

KAHAL UK has since grown from strength to strength. Under the direction of KAHAL UK’s staff and Board of Trustees, it has successfully empowered hundreds of British Jews studying abroad to explore and develop their individual Judaism in communities worldwide. KAHAL UK has developed both its Campus Internship programme as well as its Global Ambassador Fellowship; two programmes which are spearheaded by the next generation of young Jewish leaders and supported by the KAHAL UK team. Through creative partnerships and strong programme delivery, KAHAL UK continues to work alongside British and global Jewish communities to enhance young Jewish journeys.

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Above are some of the highlights from KAHAL UK’s work. Included are images from one of our UK intern’s Shabbat dinner and a welcome event in the UK.

KAHAL UK BOARD MEMBERS

Juliet Reingold

Board Chair and Governance Chair

Juliet is a lawyer working in the City of London and a Partner at Simmons & Simmons, an international law firm. She specializes in energy and infrastructure projects particularly focussing on the defense, nuclear, transport, social accommodation and utilities sectors and advises the UK Government on major, complex, high value and nationally significant public private partnerships. Her key deals include acting for the Government on: key infrastructure projects such as UK high speed railways (both Channel Tunnel and High Speed 2); nuclear power deals; prisons, rail and defense privatizations; as well as advising the Ministry of Defense on major military and nuclear projects designed to help the armed forces operate efficiently and safely. She has had various leadership and management appointments including as Global Head of the firm’s Energy & Infrastructure Sector and Global Head of International Projects. These roles have taken her around the world over the years having worked on projects in the UK, Europe, Middle East, Asia and Africa.

Juliet grew up in Bournemouth and in her youth was an active member of BBYO, she volunteered in Asheklon in Israel at the absorption centers for Ethiopian Jews and, as a student studying law at the London School of Economics, was involved in the LSE Jewish Society as well as being an active campaigner for the Soviet Jewry movement including visiting the Soviet Union in 1986 to meet Jewish Refuseniks.

Juliet is also a Board member of Dwight International School where her daughter, Yael, is in her final year studying the International Baccalaureate Diploma. Her son, Ariel, is studying medicine. Juliet has focussed on ensuring her children have a truly global outlook and learn the value of connecting internationally and being true global citizens. In 2012, Juliet took a 2 month sabbatical traveling with her family around remote parts of China studying the Chinese language, culture and religions. Juliet also acts informally as a mentor to students and aspiring lawyers and immensely enjoys helping others to achieve their educational and career goals and at the same time continuing to learn herself.

Juliet is married to Richard who is from Texas, USA. All her international experiences combined have led her to really appreciate the value of what KAHAL UK offers students. Through their US connections, Juliet and Richard for many years were the forerunners hosting many Jewish students from the USA who found their way to Juliet and Richard’s home for shabbat and yom tov experiences when they came to study in London for a semester. Having had direct experience of the benefits that both international students and hosts get from these experiences, Juliet believes that the KAHAL UK mission to provide a Jewish home away from home for international students is crucial to enable a positive and ongoing Jewish cultural and religious relationship for students away from their own homes and countries.

Juliet Reingold

London, England

Scott Saunders

Treasury Chair

Scott Saunders

London, England

Alex Jakubowski

US Appointed Member

Alex is the founder and executive director of KAHAL: Your Jewish Home Abroad, which creates transformative Jewish experiences for students studying abroad. As a Senior Adviser at Mission Measurement, Alex also serves as the Director of the Jewish Impact Genome, a landmark project to build a common language of impact across the Jewish nonprofit sector. A native of Chicago, he graduated cum laude with honors in Classical Languages and Civilizations from Northwestern University. Committed to human-centered design and innovation in the social sector, Alex was awarded the Covenant Foundation’s Pomegranate Prize for Jewish Education in 2016. Alex is a founding board member of SketchPad: Chicago's Jewish Innovation Space, and an active member of AIPAC, Alpha Epsilon Pi, JCYS, the Fraternal Order of Police, the JUF, and various other Chicagoland Jewish organizations and synagogues. His passions include golf, college football, and every dog he’s ever met.

``The best part of my transformational abroad experience was without a doubt the time I spent with local Jewish communities across Europe, which fundamentally changed my relationship with Judaism and the Jewish people. In a rapidly changing global landscape, international experiences will be more important than ever. It is paramount that we ensure our young adults seize these important moments and turn their transformational abroad experiences into transformational Jewish experiences.``

Alex Jakubowski

Chicago, USA

Fleurise Lewis

Advancement Chair

As a regular global student traveller, Fleurise was constantly inspired by both individuals and communities who reached out to to provide a home away from home. As a young professional with a global professional role, she often found herself immersed in communities around the world when balancing travel and her Jewish life far from home. Fleurise is now passionate about providing an 'open house' to students and young professionals who are always welcome in her home and providing a connection and support for those away from their families who can be assured their children have a network of support wherever they find themselves.

Fleurise is Chief Executive of a Global Insurance Broker Network. Connecting people and networking is a professional as well as personal passion!

Fleurise Lewis

London, England

Your first point of contact for any Jewish study abroad experience should be Kahal. They will put you in touch with the local Jewish community and connect you to other study abroad students, wherever you choose to go. Their staff cover different regions and can use their specialised knowledge to help you tailor your experience. They offer grants of up to $250 to help you organise amazing Jewish experiences on your travels, and the possibilities are endless. Fancy a shabbat away with your friends in an Airbnb? Kahal can help with that. Alex Jabukowski and his team have previously set me up in the Jewish community in Madrid, given me a grant to go to the Go Jewish conference in Holland, and coordinated a great Jewish tour of Buenos Aires for a group of Kahal students. They have supported me throughout my whole year abroad and I would really recommend getting in touch with them to see how they can support you, too.

UK Study Abroad Bloghttps://porquejovensoy.wordpress.com/2019/04/03/jewish-study-abroad-in-buenos-aires-the-complete-guide/