Projekt "Impuls"

Projekt "Impuls" was established to better facilitate the integration of Jewish immigrants into German-Jewish society. It was founded in 1997 as "Neue Synagoge Centrum Judaicum – Integration – Cultura". Although an integral part of the Welfare Department, the project was essentially a joint venture with the Centrum Judaicum. Eventually, it became the only project run under the auspices of the Welfare Department. Its name was changed to “Impuls” although it was also referred to as “Cultural Bridge”. Since 2001, “Impuls” has been a project of the Cultural Department of the Jewish Community of Berlin.



Analysis of the current situation in Berlin
The percentage of Jewish community members originating from the former Soviet Union is very high. A large proportion of such members have a university degree or professional certification. Most are over age 50 and many are retirees. Nevertheless they remain extremely active and have shown enormous interest in taking part in the social life of their newly adopted homeland. Since its inception in 1997, Projekt “Impuls” has enhanced the lives of new immigrants, with more than 40 programmes and more than 3,000 participants; Many of them have praised the programme and expressed the wish that it continue.

Carrying out planned projects
The main venue for events is the Neue Synagoge - Centrum Judaicum on Oranienburger Str. 29, 10117 Berlin.

Brief description and goals of the project

The primary goal of “Impuls” has been to promote interaction and learning through intercultural activities linked with promotion of German language proficiency, through such offerings as group conversation, song writing, Jewish dance and English classes.

  • Gaining deeper insight into German-Jewish and Russian-Jewish history, culture and religion through, for example, a lecture series under the guidance of a qualified instructor such as the author Stephen Tree (with simultaneous translation) and Marianna Prigozhina (doctorial candidate at the Moses Mendelssohn Centre).
  • Programmes such as field trips, city tours and the like, aimed at promoting Jewish identity through enhanced dialogue between new immigrants and long-time residents.
  • Promotion of artistic activity. Participants have the chance to meet with immigrants who have had particular success at integrating into German society. The purpose is twofold: to share experiences and to gain significant inspiration from a successful compatriot.
  • A planned literary workshop is to include round-tables and creative discussions in the context of an analysis of the developments in contemporary literature in Russia, Germany, Israel, the USA, etc. The goal is to publish a book in the German language: “18 Years After: The Immigrant’s Point of View”. The idea was put on hold for lack of funding in 2008.
  • Maintenance of shared cultural heritage in the areas of literature, history and arts. Includes visits by study groups to theatre productions and cooperation with other clubs focusing on religion or integration.

Participants in working groups and other guests are asked to pay a small fee to cover the cost of hosting artists, instructors and other special visitors. One should keep in mind that most participants are seniors and welfare recipients.

Methods: This is a non-commercial project that promotes volunteer involvement and solidarity within the community through the enhancement of recreational activities based on participants’ wishes. The community’s monthly magazine “jüdisches berlin” publicises and covers these events.

Address & Contact

Projekt "Impuls"

Oranienburger Straße 29
10117 Berlin
Tel.: (0 30) 88 02 8-404


Frau Dr. Agronik



Mon – Thu by appointment

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