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2009 Top-Rated Nonprofit

AJC Access

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Intergroup & Race Relations, International, International Peace & Security, Judaism, Race, Religion

Mission: AJC ACCESS envisions a generation of Jews committed to building a just and secure world for our community and all people. ACCESS empowers young professionals to understand and act on critical contemporary issues and facilitates their development as leaders in and beyond the Jewish community. We reach out and facilitate meaningful interaction with diplomats, policy makers and young leaders of diverse religious and ethnic communities ACCESS is positioning itself at the cutting edge between the establishment (AJC has represented the Jewish community in domestic and international halls of power for over a century) and the dynamic grassroots.

Results: ENHANCING UNDERSTANDING OF ISRAEL: ACCESS engages the diplomatic community in major US cities and visiting opinion makers from around the world through formal meetings and informal gatherings to advocate for a better understanding of Israel and the Jewish community writ large. Programs such as our “Viewpoints on Israel” series provide ACCESS members with a serious and engaged forum to discuss the central issues and developments confronting Israel in its quest for peace. ACCESS members have represented our views at conferences and meetings in Argentina, Ethiopia, Germany, Israel, Italy, Qatar, Poland, Rwanda, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates, and a trip is planned to India in 2010. BUILDING BRIDGES WITH OTHER ETHNIC AND RELIGIOUS GROUPS: Whether by traveling annually to New Orleans to help rebuild human connections and infrastructure post-Katrina or engaging in community service projects and dialogue locally with the Urban League Young Professionals, Muslim Leaders of Tomorrow, and our counterparts in the Indian-American and Latino communities: ACCESS believes in the importance of building bridges across ethnic and religious lines to broaden our understanding of each other and to make a concrete difference in our community. As representatives of the community, we also believe it is vital to be able to articulate a point of view that resonates with a knowledge of Jewish history and thought. WATCH for ACCESS NY first fundraiser/gala with Newark Mayor Cory Booker on Dec 8 (ajc.org/accessny). PROMOTING HUMAN RIGHTS AROUND THE WORLD: ACCESS sent a 25 member delegation from across the country to the April 2009 Durban Review Conference at the United Nations in Geneva to speak up for victims of human rights abuses in places like Sri Lanka, Iran, Rwanda and Darfur – victims whose plight is all too often crowded out by the grossly disproportionate attention paid to Israel by the UN Human Rights Council.  ACCESS members conducted meetings with 15 country delegations and played a role in ensuring the anti-Semitic excesses of Durban I were not repeated. ACCESS has done programs on the Rwandan genocide and Darfur and on other areas of concern in the human rights arena. We are actively working on a program about online activists in closed regimes. ADVOCATING FOR ENERGY INDEPENDENCE: JREC (Jewish Response to the Energy Challenge, http://www.jrec-conference.org/ ) is an ACCESS-sponsored initiative to bring together the collective intelligence, dynamism and enthusiasm of the nation’s young Jewish professionals to advocate for an energy policy that protects the environment and ultimately ends our dependence on Mideast oil. The JREC conference on November 8 will be webcast via satellite to ACCESS chapters and partners nationwide as well as in Europe and Israel. ACCESS offices have worked on energy issues through direct service, legislative advocacy and more. ACCESS is also proud to have formal partnerships with young Jewish communities around the world and works collaboratively with these groups through internet communications and knowledge sharing, and through joint trips and planning. (Partnerships with European Union of Jewish Students, Australasian Union of Jewish Students, South African Union of Jewish Students, Canadian Federation of Jewish Students.)

Direct beneficiaries per year: 5000

Geographic areas served: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Colorado, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco, Washington, DC

Community Stories

27 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

AJC ACCESS has been by far one of the greatest experiences I have had with a non-profit organization. From diplomatic trips to countries around the world, volunteering in the local community and their amazing local programming in Energy through their J-REC (Jewish Response to the Energy Challenge), Young Diplomats Program where they train future leaders to hold diplomatic meetings at Embassies and Consulates, and the Jewish Identity in the World. In the last year I have had the opportunity to meet and hear Shai Agassi talk about the future of the electric grid, meet with diplomats from Germany, Israel, and Mexico. I first got started with ACCESS a few years back via their amazing Leadership Institute. I have participated in many leadership programs and this was by far the most engaging and educational. It addressed the state of Jews throughout the world, current issues affecting Jews in different parts of the world, how to address the media about these issues, and how AJC as a whole has developed strong relationships with foreign governments and local cultural and religious organizations in order to help build stronger diplomatic and civil rights partnerships. I could go on and on and on. I will leave it at this and hope that others will check out AJC ACCESS and discover all that I have and more.

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Amazing organization. I go to many ACCESS events, have travelled to several international cities and attended conferences. Attended the J-REC conferecen in San Francisco this past weekend - and was blown away by people they had present and ideas for what I can do to make a difference. I met so many of the right people, thank you ACCESS!

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I joined the Russian Yound Leadership Program at the AJC in the Spring 2009 and had an amzingly enriching and inspiring experience. Each week, we have been exposed to the key challenges faced by the Jewish world and Israel today by top-high experts and much engaging speakers. It changed me views on many issues and provided me with a network of equally involved young leaders. Congratulations to the AJC for having designed and made this program possible!

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

AJC not only does great work through its international organization, but also empowers individuals to promote ideas of understanding in a variety of ways.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

A great group of smart, young, Jewish professionals who care about current events and policies impacting our country, religious freedom, Israel and the Jewish community. Well attended events, seminars and for those willing to get more engaged an opportunity to get to know about the great work AJC is doing nationally and internationally.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with AJC Access for over 2 years and it is an incredible organization. I have had hands on experience dealing with issues ranging from energy security to national security to equal justice. As one example, I was able to meet and talk with the ambassadors of over 20 countries about issues affecting the Jewish community at a luncheon sponsored by the AJC. I can't think of another organization that has such an important impact on so many issues.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with AJC professionals and volunteers has been wonderful. The content has been very accessible, relevant, and meaningful. I enjoy our partnership and look forward to future collaborations.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Had an amazing experience at Durban II. The planning and communication, coordination, and support was all first rate. ACCESS opened my eyes to a whole new world of international multilateral diplomacy and put trust in me as a delegate. This is how to build long term relationships with an organization, and how to truly build a community.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I have had two very positive experiences with Access. The first was an information event I attended at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. The second was a conference held in New Orleans in January 2009. On both occasions I have found the events to be well organized, informative and empowering.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

very user-friendly, information is readily available and laid out in a way that makes sense. I like the images and the overall design, which fits really well with the AJC website. I also like the breakdown of the national and local chapters- very useful!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have had an amazing experience with AJC ACCESS, and I feel privileged to be involved with such a meaningful and notable organization. The work is valuable, and all of us who participate are passionate about what we do. I was immediately drawn to the mission of AJC and felt a personal desire to join and help build a new chapter of ACCESS in Denver. I am a new co-chair for ACCESS Colorado and look forward to this role. Many exciting programs are underway thanks to the wonderful resources of AJC ACCESS. This year I had the honor of participating in the AJC ACCESS UN Durban Review delegation where we had a front row seat in diplomacy, attending the UN conference and key meetings with world leaders. This experience will forever influence who I am and the causes I get involved with. I am a huge advocate and supporter of AJC ACCESS and cannot say enough wonderful things about this organization!!

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Over the last 3 years I have been active with AJC Access. I have founded and participated in several organizations since my university years. AJC by far has been the most intellectually satisfying and impactful experience for me. Their staff are phenomenally informed and remarkable organized. However, it is the general feeling of compassion and understanding that attracted me and keeps me interested in their (my) endeavors. I believe unequivicolly in their creed of buidling bridges.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

ACCESS is extremely successful at providing opportunities for engagement for young Jewish professionals -- facilitating fun, productive exchanges with diplomats, experts in the green energy field, and civil society in the US and overseas. It's also great at providing a forum for discussion and debate about key issues -- the nature of a Jewish state, the future of U.S. energy policy, the role of intermarriage in the Jewish community. Occasionally, as a consequence, its primary objectives are a bit muddled, but the opportunities to think, learn, and come together more than make up for it.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I wored with a Jewish/pro-Israel think tank in Melbourne, Australia. I assisted in editing, translations and writing articles. It was a very rewarding experience and introduced me to the Jewish community of Melbourne.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with AJC ACCESS has been extremely satisfying. Not only that amazing people are working together on questions and issues that are of value and concern of society, its members are given the opportunity to get involved into a wide range of activities reaching from reflective hands-on activities to projects offering profound inside into diplomatic relations. AJC ACCESS provides a most wonderful platform for sincere engagement.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

AJC is a great organization. It enables me to connect with young people and senior leadership who are passionate about Israel, the Jewish people, and America. I've had the opportunity to serve on a steering committee and plan an event which was so meaningful to be able to invest my time and energy into the organization.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My first experience with AJC ACCESS was on a mission to Berlin and after that I was hooked. ACCESS is made up of a great group of caring people who believe in the mission of AJC. I have met some very interesting people as a result and attended important events.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with several different aspects of AJC ACCESS since the fall of 2006. Throughout all of my experiences, I have always appreciated ACCESS' dedication to younger generations. So many other organizations I have come across only focus on older members who are well-established in a particular field. On the contrary through ACCESS, AJC is able to train a new generation of young leaders. My involvement with ACCESS has contributed immensely to my college experience and my understanding of international affairs. My only feedback would be that I hope that in the future, ACCESS will continue to expand to other cities, as I hope to see a chapter established in my hometown!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The American Jewish Committee was kind enough to offer me (as a college student) a summer internship in their NY headquarters. I really respect their summer internship program, since often the students who go to NY or DC over summers are those whose parents can afford to pay for their stay. The AJC worked hard to create a learning experience for their interns - we had weekly seminars with a rabbi on Jewish historical thought on "others", and we were able to sit in on high level meetings. For the first time I received a comprehensive overview of how a national organization is run, and how inter-ethnic and inter-religious community ties are built. As someone who believes strongly in moderation, dialogue and pluralism, it was wonderful to see a Jewish organization that reflected my values. The AJC has worked hard to keep in touch with me (I'm now in a PhD program) and has offered absolutely amazing opportunities. Through the AJC, I went on a trip to the Middle East to engage in a dialogue with Muslim youth leaders. I would never have been able to attend this event without support from the AJC, and that experience has shaped the direction of my research. I believe strongly that the AJC is doing a lot of work to help create a more open world and that this effort deserves every support.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 4

AJC Access is a great group for young professionals who wish to be involved Jewishly in the community, yet they want to have a greater impact on certain issues that AJC supports (energy, immigration etc..). The staff is fabulous to work with and they are very engaging. I honestly wish I had more time to devote to this group and to attending more of the fabulous events that they are sponsoring.