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Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, Milwaukee, USA | Ginot Ha’ir Community Council, Jerusalem, Israel | JCC Krakow, Poland

About the Project

Adam-Adamah is a combined Jewish learning and environmental conservation project of JCC Krakow, JCC Milwaukee, and Ginot Ha’ir Community Council in Jerusalem. Adam-Adamah focuses on a series of educational workshops and other initiatives for the environment. Its mission is also to promote the integration of nature and green spaces in the participating communities. The target population is young leadership from all three communities who will take the lead on these projects. Delegations from Krakow, Jerusalem, and Milwaukee are participating in an exchange program as an opportunity to get to know one another and to together explore their Jewish identities and their connection to Jewish Peoplehood.

Read about their Krakow-Jerusalem seminar here.


$36,200 for three years


Our world is changing. Global economics, the disruption of social patterns, and extreme inequality are creating a need for sweeping societal changes. We are increasingly questioning these changes and feeling the need to construct a new-old culture that will allow us to make sense of this new world. The study of ancient Jewish texts challenges us and invites us to perceive the world differently. In Jewish literature we encounter a holistic perception of the world. Our sources speak of people’s place and function in the world, how to build and preserve society and the world, and how to develop a sustainable culture.

Adam-Adamah is a program dedicated to this learning. Under the auspices of JCC Global’s Amitim program, three Jewish communities — in Jerusalem, Krakow, and Milwaukee — have founded a joint Jewish curriculum on topics such as sustainability, community, and global Jewish peoplehood while simultaneously initiating and creating planned local sustainable projects. Young professionals from each community met once a month to discuss both texts and the implementation of their ideas.

Their activities included:

  1. Studying Jewish texts on the environment with Rabbi Avi Baumol in Krakow, Tamir Nir in Jerusalem, and Rabbi Shari Shamah in Milwaukee.
  2. Signing a two-year contract with the city of Krakow to revitalize the square next to the Brzozowa Street in Kazimierz.
  3. Conducted a joint seminar in Poland and Israel, October, 2015.
  4. Conducted a joint seminar in Milwaukee in September 2016.
  5. In Krakow, the participants established a community garden.
  6. In Milwaukee, the graduates of Adam-Adamah went on to take senior leadership positions in their community with the goal of helping better the environment. They also grew produce for a food pantry that feeds the needy, both Jewish and non Jewish alike.
  7. The graduates of the Jerusalem chapter helped expand and grow the environmental community, more specifically allowing for more community events to take place in the gardens of the city.


Ornstein Jonathan photo“JCCs benefit greatly from the connections made by JCC Global. Jewish Peoplehood is realizing that JCCs are addressing not only the Jews of the community but also Jews in other communities and Jews  passing by the community.” [Jonathan Ornstein, Executive Director, Krakow JCC]

I am involved in Adam-Adamah because I feel responsible for preserving Krakow’s beauty for future generations. Krakow has struggled with high levels of air pollution and a lack of awareness and education on ecological issues. I hope we will teach Krakovians about the impact of their actions and inspire them to change their habits to become more eco-conscious, creating a positive impact on our city’s future. Krakow is a historical city with many monuments, and it is important to maintain this history. But if we do not also create a culture that cares about the environment, recycling, and a healthier lifestyle, Krakow is in danger of becoming a city of only beautiful monuments without its gorgeous greenery – and possibly without residents!” [Olga Danek, cultural anthropology PhD student at Jagiellonian University, president of GIMEL Jewish Student Club]