Westbury Group Annual Gathering
Tallinn and Helsinki
1-4 May, 2023

For the first time, Westbury’s annual gathering includes a visit to two cities — Tallinn and Helsinki.

These two beautiful communities weren’t selected at random. Rather, they provide a fascinating opportunity to compare and contrast two Jewish communities that began the twentieth century with very similar demographics and yet, today, are on significantly different trajectories. What caused this divergence? What roles did philanthropy play? What lessons can we take for our work as grantmakers involved with various European communities? How do these communities serve as microcosms of other places in Europe?

During our four days together, we will meet the key communal players and visit the principal Jewish institutions in each city. We will explore the dynamics, complexities, and aspirations of each community, while simultaneously framing our learning in a way that highlights the commonalities and differences in how they developed and where they are headed. A central part of this inquiry will be the role that philanthropy played, from grantmaking foundations to social service and educational institutions, to Israeli actors. Our own discussions about the possibilities and constraints of philanthropy will be informed by these two deep-dive case studies.

As with all our Westbury gatherings, we will experience how heritage, history, cultural influence, leadership, and external support have reshaped the trajectory of these contrasting yet connected cities. We will discover how, isolated from the rest of the European Jewish geopolitical, economic, and social dynamics, they are thriving or threatened, particularly in the face of conflict, migration, and antisemitism.

1-4 MAY, 2023
~Tallinn, Estonia (first night)
~Helsinki, Finland (final two nights)

~1 night at the Radisson Collection Hotel in Tallinn (5 Star)
~2 nights at the Hotel Kämp in Helsinki (5 Star)

~International travel to Tallinn and from Helsinki are not included in the trip. Participants need to make their own way to the hotel in Tallinn and from the hotel in Helsinki
~The ferry ride between Tallinn and Estonia is included in the trip

~Breakfast: hotel buffet daily (not kosher)
~Lunch and dinner (kosher

~Price includes hotels, food and Tallinn/Helsinki ferry.
~It does not include airfare

Interested in participating? Contact Ari Rudolph [email protected].