OLAM’s annual Focal Point gathering is an exclusive opportunity for Jews engaged in global service, international development, and humanitarian aid to network, exchange ideas and best practices, and celebrate their shared commitment to serving the world’s most vulnerable individuals.
In October 2020, nearly 300 people from 17 countries attended OLAM’s first virtual Focal Point, and even more tuned in to the Opening Plenary, which was broadcast live on social media. Our 59 speakers – funders, practitioners, Jewish communal leaders, rabbis, volunteer program alumni – led 19 sessions that deepened attendees’ understanding of our field at this challenging time, and explored a future in which the Jewish community deepens its commitment to global issues.
This year, Focal Point will be a hybrid event – with online sessions and in-person networking events in select cities. This will allow all of OLAM’s partners and friends around the world to be full and active participants in the conference, even in countries where vaccines are not yet widely available. And it will allow people in places where vaccine rollout has progressed to meet face-to-face.
Focal Point 2021 theme: What is our role as Jews in creating a more equitable and sustainable world for future generations?
At a time of conflicting priorities, how can the Jewish community step up to address global challenges?
With reduced funding and travel, how can Jewish/Israeli organizations continue serving communities in the developing world?
How can we build back better and create sustainable and ethical programs for the future?
Executive Director, JDC-GRID
Infectious Disease Epidemiologist, UCLA and University of Cape Town
Founder and CEO, Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO)
Chief Executive United Jewish Israel Appeal (UJIA)
Writer, Blogger and Podcaster, UN Dispatch
President and CEO, CARE USA
Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth
CEO and President, American Jewish World Service (AJWS)
Global Ambassador, American Jewish World Service (AJWS)
Founder and Executive Director, Refuge Point
Executive Director, JDC Entwine