Aish HaTorah of Cleveland was founded in 1990. It is one of the more than 50 North American branches of Aish HaTorah International which is located in the Western Wall Plaza in Jerusalem. Since its inception, more than 10,000 individuals have participated in Aish Cleveland’s programs.
To create a movement of people who embrace Jewish values and who take responsibility for the Jewish people and Israel.
Aish HaTorah of Cleveland’s educational philosophy is to present the wisdom of traditional Judaism in a compelling, user friendly way. We believe that while it is our responsibility to inform our students of the richness that is Judaism, it is up to them to decide what aspects of Jewish belief, understanding, and practice they find relevant. We eschew a lecture approach to learning, preferring to encourage questioning and discussion in our classes.
Our Cleveland branch has four foci of attention: adult, college, women’s programming and Israel missions.
In the area of local adult programming, we present noted guest speakers, and have weekly classes in Jewish learning. Among the topics offered are Relationships, Jewish mysticism, ethical issues, Jewish philosophy and traditional texts. Shabbat morning there is also a very popular class on the weekly Torah Portion. More than 300 Cleveland participants study with us on a regular basis.
Our college programming is presented on several Midwest campuses and provides students with an opportunity to attend classes, share Friday night meals, and go on trips to Israel. In the 2007-2012 period, 622 college students went with Aish Cleveland on our trips and study programs to Israel.
Our women’s programming focuses on women studying with and teaching each other. This division of Aish Cleveland offers classes, special lecturers, one-on-one study, a special women’s study hall, and missions to Israel. In the past two years, more than 200 women have gone to Israel with Aish Cleveland.
Our Israel programming is an essential part of our other three divisions. We believe that a trip to Israel can provide participants with a truly transformative understanding of their heritage and encourage all of our students to try and join one of our trips. In consonance with this belief, we often offer highly subsidized trips to Israel for those who are interested. Since 2006, more than 1000 participants have gone to Israel with Aish HaTorah of Cleveland.