Quartet playing music

Outreach and Partnerships

The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) gives a voice to our community and the issues that affect us and our neighbors. As a part of the Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines, we support and promote outreach programs and partnerships that strengthen Holocaust education, build strong leaders, raise awareness of current affairs and facilitate cultural and business exchanges.

State Initiatives

The Jacqueline and Myron Blank Foundation and Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines collaborated with the State of Iowa to establish the Iowa Holocaust Memorial located on the grounds of the Iowa State Capitol in Des Moines. Visit the Memorial’s website to learn about the text and photos included at the site as well as find resources for teachers and schools.

“The memorial’s greatest strength is that it makes each individual think, ‘What can I do?’”
— Rabbi David Kaufman, Temple B’nai Jeshurun

In addition, the Iowa Jewish Historical Society plays an important role in Holocaust education and advancing our Jewish heritage through a museum and preservation of personal stories.

With assistance from the JCRC, the Iowa Council for Holocaust Education is led by Prof. Stephen Gaies of the University of Northern Iowa Center for Holocaust and Genocide Education. In addition to sharing regional information and events related to the Holocaust, the Council supports the development of curriculum, resources and other educational initiatives.

Israel Connections

Partnership2Gether (P2G) offers an opportunity for members of the Des Moines community to build personal and working relationships with Israelis living in our sister region, the Western Galilee. Our Federation is one among 14 Jewish communities in the U.S. and the Jewish community in Budapest who are partnered with the Western Galilee. See the latest activities and announcements from the Partnership on the P2G Western Galilee Facebook page.

The West Des Moines-Mateh Asher Partnership promotes awareness and involvement in the Sister Cities partnership between the City of West Des Moines, Iowa and Mateh Asher, Israel. Follow the program’s Facebook page to learn more about this exciting project.