Eric Robbins, president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta, visited Rwanda earlier this month with other international leaders to explore global Jewish responsibility.
The trip was called InterAct Global and was spearheaded by OLAM, a platform of Jewish and Israeli international development organizations founded in 2015, and its partners. The delegation on the InterAct Global inaugural study trip for high-level influencers from the U.S., Britain and Israel met with people and groups trying to alleviate hunger, reduce poverty and improve access to education, affordable energy and clean water.
The contingency explored the impact of Jewish and Israeli international development and service projects and studied the idea of Jewish responsibility to non-Jewish vulnerable populations.
Participants in the immersive study trip included CEOs and chairs of major Jewish organizations, Jewish lay leaders, journalists and opinion-shapers representing diverse communities and perspectives.
Robbins said of the mission, “Jewish and Israeli people are having a tremendous impact in Rwanda. I want my community to understand that we cannot think about only the problems in our own backyards — we are all connected. And hunger, poverty, lack of education or access to clean water in any part of the world impacts all of us,” he said. “Participating in immersive experiences like InterACT Global is also a great way to strengthen Jewish identity and relationships between Israel and the diaspora.”
The trip was organized in partnership with the Gesher Leadership Institute, the Society for International Development – SID Israel, and Shalom Corps. It was funded by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation and the Pears Foundation.