Jewish Community Centers (JCCs) can also be an important part of the renaissance, as they are positioned to connect with Jews who are not otherwise involved in Jewish life. When the JCC movement began in the mid-nineteenth century with the creation of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association (YMHA), it served as a central resource for Jewish immigrants and a place or celebrations within the new Jewish communities in North America. Today, people go to JCCs for their gyms, art classes, nursery schools, and day camps. JCCs must now make Jewish education, culture, and identity a central part of their mission.
Edgar M. Bronfman and Beth Zasloff, Hope, Not Fear: A Path to Jewish Renaissance (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2008), 172-173.