About

In 1893 Hannah G. Solomon of Chicago was asked to organize the participation of Jewish women in the Chicago World’s Fair. When Mrs. Solomon and her recruits discovered that participation was not substantive but would consist of pouring coffee and other hostess duties, they walked out. By the end of the World’s Fair, Mrs. Solomon and the accompanying delegate body of women had founded National Council of Jewish Women, changing forever the role of Jewish women and the nature of volunteerism.

In every decade since then, NCJW has prioritized the most pressing issues of the moment – including promoting equal pay for women, voting rights, advocating for a fair and independent judiciary, immigrant rights and protecting reproductive health, rights and justice. Nationally, NCJW is now over 180,000 members strong, with 62 sections in 28 states.

What We Do in Louisville

The Louisville Section was founded in 1895 by Rebecca Rosenthal Judah to further human welfare through education, philanthropy, service, and social action. For the past 125 years, it has remained committed to its mission and worked diligently using progressive Jewish ideals to strive for social justice in Louisville by launching new community initiatives, collaborating with other organizations, and supporting changes in our community.

As early as 1897, NCJW maintained the first summer kindergarten in Louisville and the first free public baths. More recently, NCJW sponsored the creation of Kentucky Youth Advocates (1977), helped establish CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) in 1985, initiated a Court Watch that monitored the cases of victims of domestic violence (1995), started the Adopt-A-School program (2000) and Suitcase Project (2005), raised funds to create the Jefferson County Domestic Violence Intake Center (2009), created a new Court Watch Project on Child Abuse & Neglect Cases in Family Court (2014), and facilitated and raised funds to open the Jefferson Family Recovery Court and maintained social worker’s funding for 3 years (2018). 

NCJW, Louisville Section utilizes over 640 members to engage, advocate, and support women’s, children’s, and family’s issues regardless of religious affiliation.

Community Service/ Advocacy

As early as 1897, NCJW maintained the first summer kindergarten in Louisville and the first free public baths. More recently, NCJW sponsored the creation of Kentucky Youth Advocates (1977), helped establish CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) in 1985, initiated a Court Watch that monitored the cases of victims of domestic violence (1995), started the Adopt-A-School program (2000) and Suitcase Project (2005), raised funds to create the Jefferson County Domestic Violence Intake Center (2009), created a new Court Watch Project on Child Abuse & Neglect Cases in Family Court (2014), and facilitated and raised funds to open the Jefferson Family Recovery Court and maintained social worker’s funding for 3 years (2018). 

Nearly New Shop

The Nearly New Shop opened in 1956 as NCJW’s resale store and main source of fundraising. For the last 64 years, community members have been donating clothing, accessories, home furnishings and furniture to the Shop, which uses the proceeds to pay for advocacy projects run by NCJW. Additionally, the shop offers in-kind items to the following organizations and persons in need: Shoes to WaterStep; children’s clothing to Community Coordinated Child Care (4C); men’s clothing to The Schumann Social Services Center; clothing to the Clothes Closet at Our Lady of Peace Hospital; clothing to both the Wayside Mission’s Dress for Success program and various local churches; prom dresses, accessories, and coats to Maryhurst (residential home for abused teenage girls); clothes and furniture to both Salvation Army and Jewish Family & Career Services (JFCS); and toys and prizes to Gilda’s Club camp annual children’s carnival.