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Moving beyond COVID-19: What needs to be done to help preserve and enhance Jewish communal life?

Author(s): Jonathan Boyd
Date: 09 March 2021

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Since the COVID-19 pandemic first began, the JPR research team has focused its efforts on trying to understand how it is affecting Jewish life in the UK and around the world, and has generated a series of reports sharing our insights as they evolve. In this research and policy briefing, we draw together the findings from much of the work that has been done, and consider their implications for the future of Jewish communal life.

The report touches on multiple themes, including the economic needs of disadvantaged households, how best to maintain the Jewish charitable sector, the importance of supporting local synagogue communities and Jewish schools, how to address the potential harmful effects of the pandemic on the community’s informal educational infrastructure, health measures that should be considered to help protect lives, intracommunal relations, and issues around the use of technology to help support and bolster Jewish life.

In addition, it considers how the pandemic has impacted data collection work, for good and for bad, and makes important recommendations about the research that needs to be undertaken to support Jewish life going forward.

As well as making specific recommendations, the paper is designed to be a trigger for discussion among community leaders, philanthropists and members, and we welcome feedback from readers.