Hope for Healing our Broken World

The past few weeks have been devastating for our beautiful home state. I would like to share from all of us at AJWS that our thoughts and prayers are with the families in California who have lost lives and homes.

Even as we are surrounded by heartbreaking news, we hope that this newsletter provides a small reminder of the strength and resilience of communities that come together to create positive change. Around the world, AJWS’s grantees are making progress and having a tangible impact on millions of lives. Repairing the world—tikkun olam—will take continuous acts of justice that build on this momentum. And you, along with our community of AJWS of supporters, are a part of it.

Below, you’ll find stories of action and activism that give us hope in these trying times. From a young woman taking charge of own future in India, to a community in Senegal healing from the wounds of war, to a legal victory against fossil fuels in Kenya, our grantees are bringing about the positive change that our world so desperately needs.

You can also check out some recent news articles and opinion pieces that continue to inform our work to promote human rights and fight poverty in the developing world. We hope that these stories inspire you to keep up the momentum toward building a better world.

With gratitude,
Lila Glick
Development Officer, Los Angeles

Photo by Jonathan Torgovnik

A Woman Takes the Road Less Traveled in India

Three years after AJWS made a film about Khushi’s life, she’s gone from driving cabs to training a new generation of girls just beginning their careers. And she’s done it in India, where many girls are expected to marry and care for families, not lead independent lives. Watch the video and learn about what Khushi is up to now—prepare to be inspired!


Planting Seeds of Peace in Senegal

Photo by Jonathan Torgovnik

Women are finding a new path to peace in Casamance, Senegal, a region emerging from three decades of civil war. A ceasefire in 2014 brought displaced people back from exile to their home villages, where they’re now learning to coexist with neighbors who had different loyalties during the war. Learn about how AJWS grantee COPI is helping communities recover by planting “peace gardens”—sowing peace from the ground up.


Photo by Jonathan Torgovnik

Legal Win for the Environment over Industry

In April 2018, Kenya’s High Court ruled to slow the development of a mega-project that threatens to destroy land, lives and the environment. The government had been damaging thousands of miles of land and villages to make way for a massive transportation network to process and export fossil fuels that lie below the soil. But thanks to AJWS grantee Katiba Institute, the government now must pay millions in damages and commit to a new plan that protects the environment.


Women Stand Up against Gender-Based Violence in Nicaragua

Photo by Jonathan Torgovnik

Women, men and children took to the streets of Managua, Nicaragua, to protest a recent wave of violence against women. Watch this video to experience the power of their demonstration.


What We're Reading

What 18 looks like around the world—through girls’ eyes

This stunning multimedia piece documents the lives of 18-year-old girls around the world—through the lens of young women photographers. AJWS supports organizations in 8 countries that support the rights of women and girls to make their own decisions about their bodies and their lives.

The New York Times

AJWS raises funds for victims of Indonesia's disasters

Communities in Indonesia have a long road to recovery ahead after a devastating magnitude 7.5 earthquake and tsunami. We are honored to report that CNN included AJWS on its list of top organizations providing relief to local communities.


The ongoing search for the missing in Mexico

With support from AJWS, Mirna Medina, Founder and President of Las Rastreadoras del Fuerte, helps families search for the remains of missing loved ones in Mexico, filling the gap the Mexican government has left in the context of the ongoing epidemic of gang violence and organized crime.

The Washington Post

What is tikkun olam? Pittsburgh inspires the call to repair the world

In the wake of the tragic shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, many in the Jewish community have invoked the language of tikkun olam—repairing the world—in response. In this piece, TIME names AJWS “the leading American Jewish organization dedicated to doing the work of social justice.”