AJWS Global Justice Fellowship for Chicago Area Leaders

February 1, 2014 - February 1, 2015

A year-long fellowship designed to inspire and equip Chicago area leaders to become effective advocates for global justice.

This fellowship has passed.

Learn more about the 2014-2015 Fellows or continue reading below for information about what the 2014-2015 fellows will experience during their fellowship.


What: A year-long fellowship designed to inspire and equip Chicago area leaders to become effective advocates for global justice. The fellowship includes a 7-day trip to the Dominican Republic and innovative trainings designed to develop skills in organizing and advocacy.

When: U.S. programming from February 2014–February 2015; international travel from May 18–25, 2014

Where: In addition to international travel to the Dominican Republic, meetings will take place in Chicago, Washington, D.C. and via a virtual seminar space.

Who: Leaders in the Chicago area Jewish community.

Application Deadline: Applications are now closed.

Cost: $180 – $540 (sliding scale based on financial ability) plus cost of visas, vaccinations, medications and health/travel insurance


The Global Justice Fellowship is made possible with the help of generous donations from:

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the AJWS Global Justice Fellowship?

    The AJWS Global Justice Fellowship is a selective, year-long program designed to inspire, educate and train key opinion leaders in the American Jewish community to become advocates in support of U.S. policies that will help improve the lives of people in the developing world.

    The fellowship includes an 8–10 day trip to a developing country, during which participants learn from grassroots activists working to overcome poverty and injustice. The trip will be preceded and followed by innovative trainings that will prepare participants to mobilize and organize their communities and networks in support of AJWS’s campaigns and other efforts to promote global justice. The fellowship will build a strong core of leaders in the U.S. dedicated to advocating for human rights and ending poverty in the developing world.

  • Is there more than one group of fellows each year?

    AJWS will select 5–6 groups of fellows each year: a national group of rabbinical students and graduate students pursuing careers in religious and communal Jewish leadership, a national group of rabbis and Jewish communal professionals, and several geographically-organized groups of established Jewish leaders in major U.S. cities, including the Chicago area fellowship.

  • What is the structure of the year-long fellowship program?

    The AJWS Global Justice Fellowship consists of three programmatic components that take place over the course of one year:

    Orientation programming: A series of educational opportunities—both virtual and in-person—to build community among fellows, provide context for the travel experience and introduce participants to AJWS’s campaign themes

    Travel: An immersive, 10-day experience in the Dominican Republic—engaging with local experts, meeting local advocates funded by AJWS, training in activism and leadership skills and exploring the impact of U.S. policy on developing countries.

    Post-trip engagement: A series of workshops on organizing and leadership combined with individual- and group-based mentorship, followed by opportunities to lobby, fundraise, mobilize others and engage in AJWS’s campaigns throughout the year

    Post-fellowship engagement: After the fellowship year, fellows will continue to be part of AJWS’s activist network. With support from AJWS staff and ongoing activism and leadership in AJWS’s campaigns, fellows will help to strengthen and build our movement for global justice.

  • Who is eligible for the Chicago area fellowship group?

    All Applicants must reside in the Chicago area and be able to participate in all components of the fellowship, including: orientation programming, the entire 8–10 day experience in the developing world and all post-trip engagements.

    AJWS welcomes a diverse pool of applicants with regard to denominational affiliation, gender, race, ethnic origin, disability and sexual orientation.

    The ideal applicant:

    Is highly motivated to be part of a select delegation of emerging leaders dedicated to achieving global justice

    Believes in AJWS’s mission to promote human rights and end poverty and is committed to raising awareness of and building commitment to that mission within the greater Jewish community

    Has a strong desire to learn more about how U.S. citizens can improve the lives of people in the developing world through advocacy, mobilizing and organizing

    Demonstrates significant experience as a community leader, willing to mobilize their local community to take action on global justice issues.

    Understands that traveling as a U.S. citizen to the developing world requires respect for the local people and their communities

  • What is the entire cost of the program?

    The AJWS Global Justice Fellowship is generously subsidized by AJWS and a number of generous donors enabling us to offer this opportunity at a minimal cost.

    Fellows pay a one-time fellowship fee of $180 – $540 (on a sliding scale based on financial ability) and are additionally responsible for paying for visas, vaccinations, medications and health/travel insurance. All other fellowship expenses—including international and domestic travel and all supplies and programs—are covered as a benefit of the fellowship.

    The following list outlines the entire cost of the program:

    Expenses covered by AJWS and subsidized by our donors:

    International flight, accommodations, food and activities during travel to Dominican Republic

    Domestic flights, accommodations, food and activities for U.S.-based engagement events/trainings

    Programmatic costs (e.g. AJWS curriculum, group medical supplies, trainings, etc.)

    Expenses paid by fellows:

    $180 – $540 (based on sliding scale)

    $10 visa for international travel

    Vaccinations or other medical expenses related to international travel

    Health insurance (all participants must have both regular U.S. insurance and international/travelers’ insurance.)

  • How will the fellowship address prayer and Shabbat on the trip?

    Each morning, the group will participate in “sacred space”—an opportunity for fellows to share a spiritual intention for the day. The group will not formally engage in weekday prayer together. If desired by the fellows, time will be built into the schedule to allow for individual or communal prayer. Shabbat will be planned and led by the fellows and will likely include prayer, special meals, learning and other activities, at the discretion of the group.

  • What is the food like? Can I keep kosher while traveling on the Global Justice Fellowship?

    Depending on the host community, participants will eat either in community members’ homes or in a central location. Food is usually quite simple (beans, rice, fruit, vegetables, tortillas), always ample and strictly vegetarian. Individuals with particular questions regarding kashrut should contact Lilach Shafir directly at lshafir@ajws.org. Shabbat meals will be cooked prior to Shabbat. For more information, see the AJWS Food Preparation/Kashrut Policy.

  • How can I learn more?

    For more information about the application and program logistics, please contact us using the form below.

    If you have any questions about the AJWS Global Justice Fellowship, please contact Taal Hasak-Lowy at thasaklowy@ajws.org or 847-644-0954.

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