The Jewish World Responds: Stop the Sirens Campaign

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The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), in partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) and United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism (USCJ), has launched Stop the Sirens. The campaign, initiated with a $10 million goal, is now looking for $30 million in commitments to deal with immediate and critical needs. eJP has been informed that all federations are making an effort to participate. As of July 24th, $8,500,000 has been allocated to specific projects proposed by JFNA's major partners (The Jewish Agency, JDC, World ORT and the Israel Trauma Coalition) and the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism (IMPJ) and Masorti movement in Israel. … [Read more...]

From HS Students, to Foundations, to Global Organizations, the Jewish World Mobilizes

On July 7th, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge and the Jewish world immediately mobilized to provide a range of services to soften the war’s impact, particularly on the lives of children and families, but also to assist those who are risking their lives in defense of Israel. Following are just some of the many initiatives underway (culled from list-servs of the various organizations, July 25th). Alexander Muss High School in Israel Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI) students and staff helped raise $2,000 in a one-day drive for food and supplies which were delivered to IDF soldiers. The drive was initiated by AMHSI teens, who are spending six weeks in Israel this summer living on AMHSI's Hod Hasharon campus, where they are on a study and travel program learning about Jewish … [Read more...]

“Ace” Greenberg, Bel Kaufman, z”l

We remember: Alan “Ace” Greenberg, the former head of Bear Stearns and longtime Wall Street executive died of complications from cancer in New York on Friday at the age of 86. For years, Ace hosted UJA-Federation NY's campaign launch event, which became known with some reverence and affection as the “Greenberg event.” A legend of Wall Street and a stalwart champion of the Jewish people both at home and in Israel - his memory, spirit, and impact will remain an enduring legacy. Bel Kaufman, teacher and author, granddaughter of Shalom Aleichem, best known for writing the 1965 bestselling novel Up the Down Staircase, passed away Friday at her home in New York City. Bel was 103 and an honoured lecturer at Limmud FSU programs. Her Skype session at this year's Limmud FSU Moscow was one of her last … [Read more...]

First Woman Rabbi Remembered at Terezin Event

Regina Jonas plaque

On July 24th, the United States Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad held a dedication ceremony at the Terezin Memorial (the former Nazi concentration camp also known as Theresienstadt in the Czech Republic) in memory of Rabbi Regina Jonas - widely acknowledged as the first woman rabbi in Jewish history. During the ceremony, which took place in the Columbariusm of the Terezin Ghetto, a plaque in Rabbi Jonas’ honor was unveiled. The three American women rabbis who were the first ordinees of their denominations, Rabbi Sally Priesand (Hebrew Union College, 1972), Rabbi Sandy Sasso (Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, 1974) and Rabbi Amy Eilberg (Jewish Theological Seminary, 1985) participated in the ceremony. Rabba Sara Hurwitz, ordained by Rabbi Avi Weiss in 2009, was … [Read more...]

Schneider Children’s Medical Center and United Hatzalah to Benefit from Civil Judgment Against NYC Fundraiser

Yaakov Weingarten Convicted Of Felony Tax Fraud; Permanently Barred From Charitable Fundraising Judgment requires the dissolution of 11 incorporated entities used to implement fraudulent fundraising scheme Yaakov Weingarten has been convicted of felony tax fraud. Additionally, a $520,000 civil judgment has been lodged against him and his wife for activities related to the Brooklyn-based charitable fundraising ring he operated, which solicited donations from thousands of donors for phony nonprofit organizations. The judgment resolves a civil lawsuit filed by the NY State Attorney General’s office last year against Weingarten and his wife, Rivka, who are alleged to have been the biggest beneficiaries of the scheme and are, under the judgment, required to pay $522,315. Approximately $360,000 of … [Read more...]

100 North American Olim Children Land in Israel

Ilana Barta, 23, from Teaneck, NJ, came to Israel to marry her fiance next month. Ilana has not heard from her fiance, a  Paratrooper who is currently on active duty in Gaza, since the ground operation began.

Jerusalem, July 22, 2014 - Despite the tense security situation in Israel, 228 new Olim, including 100 children, from the United States and Canada arrived at Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion Airport today as new citizens, on a Nefesh B’Nefesh Aliyah charter flight, in collaboration with the Ministry of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption, The Jewish Agency for Israel, Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael and JNF-USA. The children included 39 girls and 61 boys. Altogether, 29 families and 54 singles joined the landmark flight, which included Olim planning to live in Israel’s south and north, as part of a joint project to settle Olim in the Negev and the Galilee. Those who are planning to live in the south also received special briefings about the security situation, such as information about trauma counseling and support … [Read more...]

Just Released: A Guide to Synagogue Management Updates for 2014

Guide to Synagogue Mgmt_2014

UJA-Federation of New York has released Volume 7 in their series of Innovations and Strategies for Synagogues of Tomorrow - A Guide to Synagogue Management: Research and Recommendations Updates for 2014. This report serves as an updated overview of the market for synagogues looking to implement new data-management systems, or those that want to learn more about how their current system compares to others on the market. Even as synagogues look to better understand the many ways technology can help them interact with and manage their congregations, the marketplace is changing, with new software options available all the time. UJA-Federation of New York, along with the Orthodox Union, Union for Reform Judaism, and United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, retained Idealware to conduct research in order … [Read more...]

Claims Conference Board Charts Future Course

After extensive discussion among more than 60 representatives from its member organizations, the Board of Directors of the Claims Conference voted on the long-term future direction of the organization that has, for over the past six decades, advocated on behalf of Jewish Holocaust victims and their heirs. The Board unequivocally and unanimously decided that, for as long as there are Jewish Nazi victims, the organization’s focus remains on dealing with the immediate needs of Jewish Nazi victims worldwide, including providing homecare, food, medicine and other services for vulnerable survivors. The Board noted that for 2015, the Claims Conference will allocate an estimated $390 million from all sources, including a 45 percent increase in funding for homecare obtained from the German government, … [Read more...]