18Doors and the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta
Atlanta, GA

The Future of Interfaith Inclusion in the Atlanta Jewish Community, 2023

This pre-study laid the groundwork for the Atlanta Jewish community to develop strategies for a new community-wide initiative to address the inclusion of interfaith families.

The overview of how the Atlanta Jewish community currently supports interfaith inclusion included organizational interviews with Jewish organizational leaders, including Jewish professionals, lay leaders, clergy working with interfaith couples/families, and listening sessions with couples, families, and grandparents.

The organizational interviews and listening sessions reinforced that Atlanta has a supportive landscape for interfaith initiatives and there have been many successful interfaith collaborations. A top finding addressed the geographic dispersion of the Atlanta Jewish community: the Jewish community must find ways to be more welcoming and provide more outreach and programming in areas outside the core Atlanta Jewish areas. Another top finding is that though there are many couples and families who identify as ‘interfaith’, the term doesn’t capture the variety of different religious traditions or backgrounds. The Jewish community needs to address the need for better and consistent descriptive language.

Actionable Outcomes and Suggested Recommendations

  • Programming and Planning Strategies
    • Provide programs in multiple locations to address Atlanta geographic dispersion.
    • Develop unique programs for different target populations.
    • Create small group opportunities to allow for personal connections.  
  • Organizational Impact
    • Create a supportive environment for community professionals to collaborate to explore new possibilities.
  • Communications
    • The new Coordinator of interfaith initiatives must know the community and be a strong communicator.
    • Programs and other resources must be communicated widely, utilizing an array of online and other resources  
  • Ensure Data-Driven Decisions
    • Capture and analyze demographics; provide assessment of all new programs.
    • Conduct mapping analysis of the Jewish community and program participants.