Everything we do is for, and about, people. Our trustees, staff, sponsors and partners are the people leading at the front in our work.
Staff Trustees Partners History & Values Committees
Judith Stanton, Chief Executive Judith joined Tzedek in 2017. Judith is responsible for the overall running of the organisation and is involved in all aspects of Tzedek's work. Judith's background is in population health in the UK and abroad. Judith says "I am delighted to have joined Tzedek which is unique in allowing the Jewish community to make its contribution to alleviating global suffering."
Graham Carpenter, Communications & Fundraising Manager
Graham grew up leading in the youth movement LJY-Netzer, learning about Tzedek and its work in the context of its ideology of Tikkun Olam. Since being a movement worker for LJY-Netzer he became a board member for the national movement of Liberal Judaism, and for the World Union of Progressive Judaism. Previously he worked for the New Israel Fund as their Community Coordinator and brings significant experience movement building, fundraising, and running events of all kinds in the UK Jewish Community.
Lucy Cohen, Volunteer & Education Manager Lucy has returned to Tzedek as the Volunteer and Education Manager after first becoming involved with as a volunteer in Ghana in 2014, whilst studying Product Design at the University of Leeds. Her time in Ghana inspired her to produce her dissertation on ‘Menstrual Management in the Developing World’ and to return to Ghana as Tzedek Programme Coordinator. Last year Lucy completed her Pears JDC Jewish Service Corp fellowship in Mumbai, working with the local Jewish community, providing education for volunteers at the Gabriel Project Mumbai and managing a women’s empowerment paper recycling enterprise; Naya. For these roles, as well as her development and volunteer work with other women’s NGOs in Mumbai Lucy received the 2018 Leonard and Tobee Kaplan Award.
Jacob Forman, Volunteer & Education Officer
Jacob joined Tzedek as our Volunteer and Education Officer is February 2018 after two years at Mitzvah Day, where he worked as Project Coordinator. Prior to this, Jacob was Team Leader for a VSO programme in the Philippines, implementing a Disaster Risk Reduction Strategy aimed at reducing the impact of natural disasters through community-led development. Jacob previously worked in Education at King Solomon High School and other schools in North East London. Jacob says “I really love the Jewish values of Tzedek and enjoy working with such a fantastic team."
Charlie Taylor, Ghana Country Director
Charlie worked for most of his life in the UK managing land for charities. Five years ago he volunteered with the VSO and went to Papua New Guinea for two years on an HIV project. Upon returning to the UK he decided he wanted to carry on working in international development and since then has worked on water projects in Kenya and Rajasthan. He is now Tzedek's Country Director in Ghana and brings a wealth of international development experience combined with senior management experience in the charity sector.
Galia Shilo Sum, International Programme Manager Galia is responsible for Tzedek's overseas projects work. She is the primary point of contact for our partners across the globe. Galia says 'I love to work at Tzedek because I’m able to pursue my passion to make a change and help the poorest of the poor to improve their lives and support themselves in a sustainable and honourable way.'
Nicole Brown, Finance Manager
Nicole, who joined the team in 2016, manages all of Tzedek's finances. Nicole says: “The combination of working with such a great team at Tzedek whilst being able to make a contribution to such a worthwhile cause is what makes this role so special for me”.
Inbal Schurr, Operations Administrator Inbal joined the team in Sep 2018 as our operations administrator, bringing her experience from the busy food industry in both London and Israel. Inbal relocated to London 9 years ago and she in a proud mom of 2 boys.
Jonathan Middleburgh, Chair of Trustees, is a Barrister by training and first career. He retrained as an occupational psychologist and his day job consists of coaching and developing individuals and teams, focusing on leadership development. He got involved with Tzedek as a result of seeing its work on the ground in Northern Ghana and feels passionate about Tzedek’s international development work and its role in inspiring the UK Jewish Community to engage constructively with the challenges of international development.
Jonny Persey, was Chair of Trustees from 2013 to 2017, an appointment which marks his return to Tzedek some twenty years after he was first involved in the charity. Jonny is a film producer and Chief Executive of Met Film. He says: “Tzedek is a place where values, words, and deeds sit together side by side, all pushing in the same direction. By remembering these issues to ourselves and others, we can in turn multiply the impact of our action.”
Paul Joseph is a partner in the Intellectual Property and Technology group of an international law firm. He advises on IP and technology transactions and disputes. Paul brings legal expertise to the Tzedek Board and more importantly (at least for him) an enthusiasm for Tzedek's mission of directing Jewish education and communities towards tackling global poverty.
Frances Khalastchi brings to the Tzedek board professional skills in marketing, communications and fundraising. For Frances, "Tzedek encapsulates the best part of many faith groups - channelling community activity and energy for the greater good.” Frances has also enjoyed participating in a number of sporting fundraisers for Tzedek
Gila Sacks works in government and has held policy roles in No.10, HM Treasury, the Cabinet Office, and Education and Business Departments. She has a background in voluntary sector strategy and in Jewish education. Gila says: Tzedek has a key role to play in educating, enabling and inspiring people to understand their potential to make a difference and act upon their responsibility to make a difference.
Susannah Finch joined Tzedek as Treasurer in 2009. Susannah says: Tzedek is a small but beautifully formed organisation. The different strands of our work all feed into and support each other. It is also important to me that it is not an insular organisation, but looks beyond the Jewish community and out into the world.
Nik Kafka is the founder and CEO of an award-winning international development charity focused on enterprise & skills education for young people. He says, “Tzedek represents such an exciting opportunity to harness the energy and expertise of the Jewish community towards tackling the injustice of global poverty – it’s a privilege to be part of this collective effort.”
Josh Simons is an experienced development practitioner and humanitarian who has worked in marginalised communities across the world. In addition to his field-based work, he has been a compelling advocate at home for the people and projects he has worked with; educating and challenging members of both the Jewish and wider communities to recognise their responsibilities as global citizens.
The Pears Foundation aims to create meaningful social change, increase respect and understanding and inspire people to support their communities and the causes they care about. Tzedek has been generously supported by the Pears Foundation.
JHub inspires and supports positive social change in the British Jewish Community and beyond. JHub brings together people and organisations who share a commitment to Jewish values and social justice. JHub was the incubation home to Tzedek from 2008-2012 and continues to be a hub for ideas and networking for Tzedek.
OLAM is a collaborative venture and shared platform to promote global Jewish service and international development.
The Jewish Volunteering Network works across the community and throughout the UK with individuals and organisations promoting volunteering and volunteer opportunities. Tzedek is a member and supported by JVN.
Bond is the UK membership body for organisations working in international development or supporting those that do through funding, research, training and other services. Tzedek is an active member.
History & Values
As a Jewish charity, we are motivated by core Jewish teachings, and value our tradition’s approach to complex injustices.
Tzedek (justice, charity) We believe that extreme poverty is man-made and can be solved through action, not as charity (tzedekah), but rather seeking to increase justice (tzedek). Our responsibility is to bring greater justice to the world.
Ahavtah et HaGer (you shall love the stranger) Jewish traditions teach us to see the world globally in ever-widening ripples of responsibility. Our family lies closest to us, our community next, and so on. Tzedek believes that the ripples don’t stop at a certain point – beyond which we have no responsibility. Our belief in repairing the world stretches beyond racial or religious boundaries.
Naaseh v’nishma (we will do and we will understand) Awareness, knowledge and learning lead us to deeper commitments, which in turn drive us to behave in certain ways. And when we act we also learn. The cycle of learning and doing is never-ending; Jewish tradition teaches us and we firmly believe that the two go hand-in-hand.
Shutafut (partnership) In our overseas projects we simply listen to our partners – and so help them to help themselves. Inspired by Maimonides’ definition of charity many hundreds of years ago, we believe the ideal form of Jewish charity is to take a poor person into partnership and give them a way to support themselves.
Lo Alecha HaMelacha Ligmor(It is not your duty to complete the work) It remains our responsibility to keep working towards a better world. It may not be within our grasp to eradicate poverty, but it is our responsibility to be part of activities which work towards doing so.
Our roots go back to Band Aid in 1984, which moved millions of people across the globe, including the British Jewish community. In the spring of 1990 a small group of activists led by Steve Miller held a series of open seminars on global issues called ‘Tzedek’. These seminars set the tone for the organisation – rooted in Jewish values and engaging with the reality of development work. In the autumn of 1990 Tzedek was formally launched as a charity to fulfil this mandate.
Initially, money raised and projects supported were in South India, Zimbabwe, Sudan and Swaziland and public seminars were held for the UK Jewish community.
In 1995 we took a major leap forward. We expanded the Board of Trustees (chaired by Clive Lawton), employed a part-time development officer and began a volunteering programme in Zimbabwe. Five volunteers (mostly graduates of Jewish youth movements) took part in the first scheme co-ordinated by a long term volunteer, Jonny Persey, in Zimbabwe.
The following years saw continued expansion and development. Volunteers increased in numbers each year and, when political circumstances limited our activities in Zimbabwe, new programmes and partnerships were established in West Bengal, Kenya and Ghana. New overseas projects developed in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Uganda, Nigeria and Ghana. Each project brought new relationships, partnerships and friendships in those countries.
We employed our first full time director in 2007, Dan Berelowitz. In that year we won a significant three year grant from DFID for our education work, matched by the Pears Foundation. Soon afterwards Tzedek was accepted as the first resident of the Pears Foundation’s JHub in West Hampstead. Tzedek called JHub home until the end of 2012 and through that residency we continued to expand in resources, staff programmes and of course impact.
The Pears Foundation has been instrumental in our story of growth and continued success. They are our key partners in bringing our message to the Jewish community in the UK.
Tzedek now boasts a growing set of overseas development programmes and a unique set of programmes operating within the Jewish community. We are a small staff team of 3 full time and 3 part time staff working from our office in Childs Hill, London, and one country director based in Ghana.