Latin America Campaign


Supporting Jewish Communities Central and South America SupportingArgentina | Mexico | Brazil | Chile | Uruguay | Cuba Bolivia, Costa Rica, Peru and Panama Ensure the continuity of Latin American Jewish communities for this generation and beyond There are few more effective ways to work with a community in building a modern mind with a Jewish heart than through technology based, high quality Jewish education for its members. This is why, at this critical junction in the evolution of Latin American Jewish communities, ORT is undertaking the Latin American Campaign; a major program of new projects with the dual aims of creating a sense of unity and connection throughout the region and meeting the highly individual and specific needs of each community. With our educational vision and experience, ORT will bring further impetus to the new and ever strengthening atmosphere of Jewish community that has emerged as a result of many years of hard work. The Latin America Campaign – Why Now Following nearly a decade of recession, the Latin American economic outlook has finally begun to improve. But this has inevitably brought with new problems – high inflation, skills shortages, unacceptable levels of unemployment and a widening poverty gap. These are the inevitable consequences as economies adapt to the competing influences of rising global demand for energy, low-cost imports of manufactured goods and technological advances. Electronics studies in Latin America. The Jewish communities of Latin America have been slow to recover as well. Many of these communities have shrunk as large numbers of Jews have left, most of them immigrating to either the United States or Israel. Many synagogues and Jewish schools that had closed during the recession have yet to reopen. Community welfare organisations are still saddled with debt. At the same time, Jewish communities throughout Latin America are facing rising assimilation and intermarriage rates. The future of many of these communities looks bleak. Without outside help, there is a real fear for the survival of Latin Americas Jewish communities. The World ORT Campaign for Latin America aims specifically to help in guiding these Jewish communities, large and small, through this difficult period of change and through to build a solid base for their future existence. For many of these communities, ORT is the only source of Jewish education and is their main connection to Judaism. The campaign will ensure that while ORT continues to provide our students with a high quality Jewish education, they will also be in a position to benefit from the demand for new technological skills. The campaign will allow ORT to support those trapped in the widening poverty gap, bringing them self-sufficiency and prosperity. The World ORT Campaign for Latin America is vitally needed to ensure the future of the Latin American Jewish community. Who will benefit from this campaign This campaign specifically aims to benefit children and young people, the future generations of the Jewish communities in Latin America, putting them on a path towards employment security and a life long sense of Jewish identity. The campaign will also benefit older members of the community, in the short term through things like focused vocational training and in the long term by having a younger generation well equipped to support them through a safe and secure retirement. How will this campaign be funded This is matching funds campaign. In each of the major beneficiary countries – Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, and Uruguay, all international fundraising will be matched by the local community.The World ORT Campaign for Latin America will raise funds over a three-to-four-year period, drawing upon the support of ORT fundraising countries throughout the world. To view further details on World ORT’s Latin America Campaign with details for each country, please view the related link. The Campaign: Country by Country Argentina: Expanding the campus The two ORT technical high schools in Buenos Aires have been growing at a phenomenal rate. Many more Jewish families would like to send their children to ORT, but the schools are already stretched to over-capacity and simply cannot enrol more students. If current demand at the schools continues and new facilities are not forthcoming, ORT Argentina will be forced to turn away nearly 400 students in 2006, 600 in 2007, over 800 in 2008 and close to 1,100 in 2009. Most of these students will not receive a Jewish education and are in danger of assimilating. ORT is going to solve this problem by providing a new school building additional to the two existing ORT schools in Buenos Aires. A plot of land adjacent to the school on Yatay St. has recently become available for purchase. As the school is located in an urban environment in downtown Buenos Aires and land in the area is usually hard to come by, this presents ORT Argentina with a unique opportunity. Plans include purchasing the adjacent plot of land and building a nine storey building to house additional classrooms, laboratories and workshops, which will give ORT Argentina the space and facilities it needs to be able to provide a Jewish education for an additional 750 students. World ORT is seeking to raise $1,929,700 over three years to reach out to as many young Argentineans as possible. Your help will give them the opportunity to benefit from an education based on cutting edge technology, while reinforcing their sense of Jewish identity and heritage. Mexico: Employment for young Jews Mexicos Jewish community has undergone major changes socially and economically over the past ten years. Over half of the Jewish families in this once self-sufficient and flourishing community have suffered financial difficulties that have seriously impacted upon their employment situation, economic well-being and standard of living. Statistics have shown that over half the Jewish families in the community have suffered a continued decline in their economic situation, young people over 18 do not have the skills they need to gain employment and there are fewer entrepreneurs and fewer people generating economic activity within the community than ever before. ORTs goal in Mexico is to increase employment opportunities and earning potential within the Jewish community. In researching how best to tackle this issue, ORT Mexico has identified a shortage of young Jewish professionals who specialise in the fields of communication and digital media two of Mexicos fastest growing industries. In response to the demand for jobs in these areas and an urgent request from the Mexican Jewish community, ORT is establishing a Media Training Centre in Mexico City. The Centre will provide advanced technology training for members of the Jewish community interested in attaining employable skills, increasing their earning potential and developing a career in audio, video and digital production. It is only by receiving focused training and gaining employable skills corresponding to the needs of the local job market that the Jewish community will be able to improve its economic situation and become self sufficient once again. World ORT is seeking to raise $276,800 over three years to provide the Mexican Jewish community with the education and training it needs to ensure its economic future. Brazil: Scholarships and new laboratories The ORT School for Science and Technology in Rio de Janeiro affords students a unique mix of employable skills in advanced technological fields and a comprehensive Jewish and secular education. Its students graduate with every chance for a stable financial future and a secure place within the Jewish community. Unfortunately, following years of economic instability, increasing numbers of families are struggling to send their children to ORT and resorting to local non-Jewish schools. ORT is committed to allowing all Jewish children the opportunity to gain a proper Jewish and secular education, regardless of their financial situation, to ensure that they remain in the Jewish fold and to offer them a pathway out of the cycle of poverty. At the same time, the ORT school in Brazil critically needs to upgrade the schools science and technology laboratories. These laboratories, vital to the schools competitive advantage, are at risk of becoming obsolete. Without significant upgrades to these facilities, ORT Brazil will no longer be able to provide its students with the education and training necessary to compete in the modern job market. World ORT needs to raise $308,000 in order to ensure Jewish continuity and economic development in the Brazilian Jewish community. –>