Limmud FSU – A 2013 Retrospective

Limmud FSU Celebrates Exponential Growth and Success

Limmud FSU is a stealth force in the world of informal Jewish education for the young Russian-speaking Jewish community. Today, we experience their passion and burgeoning interest in their Jewish heritage, reflecting their drive and desire to understand what it is to be Jewish. Entering its eighth year, volunteerism and partic- ipation in Limmud FSU events has grown exponentially.

As we travel on behalf of Limmud FSU, from Moscow and Ukraine to Belarus, Israel, Moldova, St. Peters- burg, Canada and the United States, we continue to be inspired by the intellectual and spiritual hunger of the participants, who were eager to understand: “What is being Jewish about?” It is the uniqueness of the Limmud model that provides young Russian-speaking Jewry an unfet- tered, safe environment to learn about their Jewish roots and history and, most importantly, about their place in the Jewish community.

The amazing growth of Limmud FSU – from a few hundred in 2006 to roughly 25,000 participants in 2013 – showcases the yearning for Jewish knowledge throughout the transglobal Russian-speaking Jew- ish world. As Limmud FSU forges ahead, the outstanding enthusiasm and genuine passion on the ground from Russian-speaking volunteers, participants, and presenters have encouraged Limmud FSU to do more, to engage more Russian-speaking Jewry, and to support local commu- nities in their efforts to “own” their programming. Indeed, each Limmud FSU conference is an expression of local interests, local culture, and local strengths.

The following document highlight 2013 Limmud FSU conferences and also offer a glance at plans for 2014. However, none of this would be possible without the collaboration, partnership, and generosity of global Jewish organizations and our gener- ous donors. And, we want to thank the volunteers in every community who work so hard to make each Lim- mud FSU conference and festival an .outstanding success

In a few short years, dynamism and visionary leadership at every level have transformed the lives of thou- sands of young Russian-speaking Jewish adults who are becoming knowledgeable and reconnected with their heritage and culture. We hope you will enjoy reading about Limmud FSU, truly an important and unique ‘growing’ Jewish learning organization.

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