About this blog: Discussing religion, spirituality and values. About the writers: Amy Umble is the religion reporter for The Free Lance-Star. Janet Marshall is the religion editor for The Free Lance-Star.
Jewish teens looking for social causes have a new resource. JChoice.org just launched today. On the site, Jewish youth can learn about all sorts of opportunities to do good including helping elderly women in Jerusalem who pack lunches for needy students, preserving a 7,000-acre reservation in Massachusetts, providing birthday parties for homeless kids in New England, and supporting drum workshops and soccer camps for Palestinian and Israeli youth.
Each cause is linked to a Jewish value, such as shalom or peace, guarding the earth or l’ovdah U’l'shomrah, and tzedek or justice.
From a press release about the site:
“Our mission is simple. We empower this next generation of contributors to learn and experience the Mitzvah of Tzedakah and become more thoughtful in their relationships with society,” said Joshua Troderman, executive director of JChoice.org.
There are four unique feature sections on the site that make it easy to use and navigate:
· Explore Causes showcases causes that can be searched and sorted by popular categories, Jewish values and geography
· Give Now enables a user to donate directly to a charity, give to a friend or family member’s account or purchase gift cards
· My JChoice Network is the social networking community where users engage not only one another (building a shared database of Torah sermons (Divrei Torah), Mitzvah projects, and Jewish value identification), but can also directly interact with their causes of choice
· JMix is the multi-media area of the site that houses other areas of inspiration including music, video, arts, B’nei Mitzvah tools and contests that award participants with gifts of Tzedakah grants to be given away from their accounts
“We built JChoice.org to meet the demand of an audience of younger Jewish donors that strive to find causes that have meaning within the context of their own lives,” said David Rosenberg, founder and visionary leader of JChoice.org. “We did an in-depth study last summer and learned these young donors want involvement. They have told us they want to understand the impact of their activism and to be able to dialog with their peers regarding their charitable choices.”