Inside Jewish Poland & Germany in Partnership with Northwestern Hillel

March 18, 2017 - March 26, 2017

This is a uniquely crafted global Jewish service program tailored specifically for undergraduate students from Northwestern University Hillel. Participants will have the opportunity to connect and engage personally with issues facing Jewish communities abroad. Through a combination of educational tours, conversations with local leadership, and meaningful service work, participants will learn about Poland and Germany’s rich Jewish history first-hand. They’ll experience both the renewal of Jewish life and the continued need for social services by volunteering with children and elderly and spend time together with Polish and German Jewish college-aged peers, learning about Jewish life in their small but tight-knit communities and serving alongside JDC programs in the region. This is an exceptional opportunity for young leaders interested in foreign affairs, global Jewish culture, and international development.

Itinerary Highlights:

  • Learn about the history of Jewish life and the current challenges in Poland and Germany through briefings with JDC staff and community leaders such as the Chief Rabbi and visits to Auschwitz and the Berlin Wall.
  • Experience Poland and Germany first-hand through food, arts and a cross-cultural Shabbat experience with the local Jewish community
  • Connect with Polish and German college-aged peers, as well as college students from Northwestern Hillel.
  • Lend a hand by performing service work in the Poland and German Jewish community with the elderly, teens and children

You can view a sample itinerary here.

Trip Dates: March 18-26, 2017

Participation Fee: $1,800 USD*

The trip cost includes:

  • Roundtrip International Airfare from Chicago to Poland/ Returning from Germany
  • Local transportation within Poland & Germany
  • Meals
  • Hotel Accommodations (note: the participation fee covers accommodations in double or triple rooms)
  • Site visits, briefings, tours, etc.
  • Medical and emergency evacuation insurance

To learn more click here for a FAQ.

Flight Details: The group flight will depart from a Chicago area airport on Saturday evening, March 18 and will return Sunday, March 26. All participants are expected to meet the group at the airport three hours prior to departure and travel with the group to Poland & Germany. An exact itinerary will be shared upon notification of acceptance.  

For more information visit or e-mail Jonathan Rosenblatt, Dopplett Director of Engagement, at  

About JDC in Poland: Poland lies at the heart of Europe and has become the epitome of a changing continent. After joining the EU in 2004 its economy flourished but the global financial crisis dealt a heavy blow to many. The disparities between basic costs and pension and salary levels in Poland mean hardships for the elderly, single-parent and young families, and people with disabilities, all of whom are feeling the impacts of recent years’ cuts in social welfare subsidies. After re-entering Poland to provide relief services during the Cold War era, JDC continues today the work it began in 1981 with the local community to help ensure the well-being of impoverished elderly and other vulnerable Jews. At the same time, JDC is helping Polish Jews reconnect to Judaism and secure a vibrant future for what was once Europe’s largest Jewish community.

Learn more about JDC’s work in Poland here.

About JDC in Germany: The German Jewish community—one of Europe’s largest—is dominated today by immigrants from the former Soviet Union. In recent years, this émigré population has become increasingly integrated into German society; young people in particular are benefiting from the nation’s strong economy, enjoying success in the science, technology, and financial sectors. Young Jews have been seeking new spaces for Jewish participation and stimulating the “official” community to develop additional activities and more inclusive programs that welcome Jews of all backgrounds.

Learn more about JDC’s work in Germany here.

Get Involved

Use the form below to get more information.


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