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Avodah Alumni Study 2012: AVODAH Alumni Reflect and Respond

Sponsor(s): AVODAH

Principal Investigator(s): Lawrence Neil Ballis, Amanda Koppelman Milstein

Key Findings:

Internet Survey (and focus group) analysis of the impact of AVODAH on its alumni was completed in 2012 and published in 2013 by Lawrence Neil Ballis and Amanda Koppelman Milstein. 

Major positive findings from the study:

• 92% of AVODAH alumni report that the AVODAH year-long program set them on their current career path.

• 90% of AVODAH alumni indicate that participating in the program helped them to obtain jobs.

• 83% of AVODAH alumni report that their experience altered their long-term career plans.

• 98% of AVODAH alumni report that the year-long program shaped their understanding of the causes and effects of poverty.

• 95% of AVODAH alumni report that the year-long program strengthened their commitment to social justice issues as a whole.

• 85% of AVODAH alumni report that the year-long program helped them find their place in the Jewish community.

• 91% of AVODAH alumni report that AVODAH helped them build professional networks that helped them find jobs or volunteer activities.

Sample:

Internet Survey via Survey Monkey sent to 424 program alumni (1998-2012) for which valid email addresses existed. 

  • 72% (N=306) completed the survey in its entirety.

Focus groups conducted with a total of 22 AVODAH participants.

Sample Size: 306 Internet Surveys completed

Study Notes:

The AVODAH mission statement notes:

"AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corps strengthens the Jewish community’s fight against the causes and effects of poverty in the United States. We do this by engaging participants in service and community-building that inspire them to become lifelong leaders for social change whose work for justice is rooted in and nourished by Jewish values."

AVODAH was founded in 1998, "... to address pressing social needs in low-income communities, to encourage civic engagement among young adults, and to strengthen the Jewish community’s fight against the causes and effects of poverty in the United States. Each year, young Jewish adults join AVODAH’s year-long service program, which has three components: (1) full-time service experience at local antipoverty organizations in New York, Chicago, New Orleans, and Washington,DC, (2) communal living in an AVODAH house (bayit) designed to establish a supportive, pluralistic community of young Jewish leaders, and (3) an educational framework that includes training in social activism, an exploration of the dynamics of urban poverty, Jewish study and reflection."

 

Language: English