Silverlake Independent JCC/ Islamic Center of Southern California Partnership

So proud of our change-maker project organized by Deanna Neil who partnered with Hadir Elsayad to bring together children from the SIJCC – Silverlake Independent Jewish Community Center and the Islamic Center of Southern California (ICSC) for a day of learning, connecting, and serving others. Congratulations on a job well done! #MeetAMuslim #MeetAJew #BreakNewGround

So proud of our change-maker project organized by Deanna Neil who partnered with Hadir Elsayad to bring together children from the SIJCC - Silverlake Independent Jewish Community Center and the Islamic Center of Southern California (ICSC) for a day of learning, connecting, and serving others. Congratulations on a job well done! #MeetAMuslim #MeetAJew #BreakNewGround

Posted by NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change on Thursday, June 16, 2016

Circle of Courage

Muslim and Jewish Youth Inspiring Change (MAJIC) is a high school leadership program created by NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change.

MAJIC decided it was time to stand up to hate with compassion and courage. They teamed up with filmmaker Wesam Nassar to create a public space on the Santa Monica Promenade to affirm their stories. This film, Circle of Courage, makes the case that young Muslims and Jews are more powerful when they stand together. In this atmosphere of increasing intolerance, we hope you can help us amplify this message of solidarity and hope coming from these emerging young leaders. #Courage2Stand #Islamophobia #Antisemitism
Circle of Courage

This year, NewGround’s High School Leadership Council decided it was time to stand up to hate with compassion and courage. They teamed up with filmmaker Wesam Nassar to create a public space on the Santa Monica Promenade to affirm their stories. This film, Circle of Courage, makes the case that young Muslims and Jews are more powerful when they stand together. In this atmosphere of increasing intolerance, we hope you can help us amplify this message of solidarity and hope coming from these emerging young leaders. #Courage2Stand #Islamophobia #Antisemitism

Posted by NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change on Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Our teenagers have learned through their program the injustice of these blanket statements, and will spread a new message of curiosity over assumptions for the next generation.

Press Coverage

Day School Exchange Program

Alumni initiated and lead an annual exchange program between Muslim and Jewish day schools. For the last four years, the 7th and 8th graders connected with each other and the traditions of Islam and Judaism. Over sixty 7th and 8th graders attending Muslim (New Horizon) and Jewish (Sinai Akiba Academy) schools learned about the other faith community through more than a text book this year. With the help of NewGround, these schools integrated visits to each other’s campuses to learn firsthand about the practices and practitioners of Islam and Judaism. Click here to learn more.

As we go into Shabbat, please take a moment to watch this video on the incredible exchange that students at Sinai Akiba Academy / The Douglas Family ECC get to participate in each year. We are so proud of the work that they do! Shabbat Shalom!

Posted by Sinai Temple on Friday, May 27, 2016

Two Faiths, One Prayer

Two Faiths One Prayer was borne out of our experience as fellows of NewGround: A Muslim/Jewish Partnership for Change. As part of the fellowship — an eight month conflict resolution, leadership training, and interfaith learning program — we participate in two weekend retreats. During bi-monthly sessions and retreats, we learn about each other’s religions, histories, and build strong connections and friendships that help dissolve whatever blinders we may have previously worn. On our first retreat, after sharing our traditions of Shabbat and Isha, we realized that our prayer times intersected, and that perhaps, instead of praying in separate spaces, we might share a prayer space. Though our rituals and avenues of connection are different, our G-d and our goals are the same. The experience was profound for both participants and observers. Those praying expressed a heightened sense of focus and intention in their prayers, and those observing reported a feeling of unity and deep connection. We were surprised by the resonances and sense of “call and response” between the prayers of the two traditions. This experience led us to experiment more inside the small, safe space of the fellowship. But then we began to see our experiences as they connected to other efforts happening around the world. We were first struck by the swell of support in Chapel Hill after the shooting deaths of three Muslim students – and the number of people in the Chapel Hill community who came out to pray. Several weeks later, Muslims came to encircle the Oslo synagogue in solidarity on the Shabbat following shootings at a synagogue in Denmark.
"So inspired, we now seek to design a safe, sacred space for others to experience what we felt (and what was, perhaps, felt by the communities in Chapel Hill and Oslo) — or at least to witness that it’s possible for Jews and Muslims to come together in prayer. We hope that people of our own faiths, and others, will realize that we are praying to the same One G-d who sees each of us as unique human beings worthy of dignity and respect."

MAJOR Fund

The founding members of Muslim and Jewish Organized Relief (MAJOR) came together through their participation in NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change. A partnership of Jews and Muslims, their goal is to assist people in need, regardless of their faith, in the critical areas of clean water, education and healthcare. The MAJOR Fund’s two-fold mission is to increase a sense of community locally and share that community through global humanitarian projects.

To get involved, click here.

Humanitarian Projects

Alumni have built houses through Habitat for Humanity, served the needy through the Humanitarian Day program in downtown Los Angeles, and participated in Big Sunday. Our alumni work through their network to help improve the quality of service initiatives that enrich the Los Angeles Community. See the video below to learn more about our NewGround change-makers’ projects:

MAJIC Service Day

Global Youth Service Day

MAJIC High School Leadership Council Carnival Against Hunger 2012