Community life

Shoah day trust has new head

December 16, 2010

The chief executive of a national charity supporting vulnerable families is the new chair of trustees for Holocaust Memorial Day.

Cathy Ashley is CEO of the Family Rights Group and a former Lambeth councillor. She is also a founder member and vice-chair of the Parent Promoters' Foundation, which set up a non-selective comprehensive in Lambeth. Her family is involved in Edgware Reform Synagogue and some relatives died in Auschwitz.

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Swastikas daubed in Stamford Hill

By Jessica Elgot, December 16, 2010

At least seven vehicles in Stamford Hill were daubed with swastikas and "Jews raus [Jews out]" slogans in gold spray paint on Shabbat.

The daubings were discovered on the cars and vans - all large, older vehicles belonging to members of the strictly Orthodox community - in Oldhill Street and Lynmouth Road on Friday evening.

Local Liberal Democrat councillor Ian Sharer said he only became aware of the incident after Shabbat. Although seven people had reported daubings on their vehicles to the police, others may not have come forward.

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Prince lifts the lid on museum's revamp

By Jessica Elgot, December 16, 2010

Prince Charles paid tribute to the "enormous contribution" of British Jewry at the "royal opening" of the Jewish Museum in Camden on Tuesday.

The prince – a patron of the museum since 2008 – was impressed by its £10 million refurbishment, which was completed in March.

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Nurseries face closure say parents

By Jay Grenby, December 16, 2010

Herts County Council is to seek further clarification from the Government on an issue which has prompted angry protests from a Jewish nursery in Borehamwood.

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Shul CCTV catches purse snatcher

By Marcus Dysch, December 9, 2010

An Edgware synagogue has been thanked by police for its role in the jailing of a heroin addict who assaulted a pensioner outside the shul. The Yeshurun Synagogue in Fernhurst Gardens assisted officers' inquiries after the incident last month.

Christian Molnar, 30, of Burnt Oak Broadway, was jailed for 24 weeks at Hendon Magistrates' Court after admitting snatching a purse from an 84-year-old non-Jewish woman to fund his addiction.

The shul handed police a CCTV recording of the mugging which showed Molnar making off with the purse.

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Minyan men get a rabbi

By Simon Rocker, December 9, 2010

Borehamwood's new Sephardi minyan has taken an important step towards consolidation with the appointment of its first rabbi.

Rabbi Jeff Berger, who has been taking services from September - first once, then twice a month - will move with his family to Borehamwood from Maida Vale in January.

His new part-time post is being supported by the Spanish and Portuguese Jews' Congregation, looking to establish its first new community for some 40 years.

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Funding for Orthodox charity axed

By Jessica Elgot, December 9, 2010

An Orthodox charity which provides complementary therapies in north west London must close operations this month after its grant was axed.

Talking Matters, which provides counselling, arts and relaxation therapy for the Orthodox community in Stamford Hill, will close its sister project Talking Hands, based in Temple Fortune.

The charity received a grant of around £20,000 from London Councils to expand in 2008 and provide services to Harringey, Brent and Barnet.

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Warning over Charedi poverty

By Robyn Rosen, December 9, 2010

The umbrella organisation for strictly Orthodox charities has warned that the Charedi community is on the brink of "massive, frightening changes" and that poverty will grow to levels "beyond living memory".

Interlink reported a £41,000 surplus for the financial year at its annual meeting, following two years of deficit. It raised £2.39 million for the community and helped 19 organisations to secure public sector contracts last year, 11 more than envisioned.

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Mitzvah Day thanks

By Katie Taylor, December 9, 2010

Pupils from Jewish schools went to Lambeth Palace to receive awards for their Mitzvah Day efforts in partnership with non-Jewish schools.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams and Reform head Rabbi Tony Bayfield made the presentations to the four schools.

North West London Jewish Day School had partnered with Christ Church School and Ilford Jewish Primary with St Augustine's Catholic Primary to perform a range of good deeds.

Council of Christians and Jews' chief executive David Gifford described them as "young interfaith dialoguers".

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Student shortage threatens deaf classes

By Robyn Rosen, December 9, 2010

A lip-reading class for the deaf and hard of hearing is on the brink of closure because of a shortage of students.

The Wednesday class at the Jewish Deaf Association in North Finchley launched two years ago after Barnet College ended its longstanding courses following funding cutbacks. JDA chiefs believe the issue is not a lack of need, but that "not enough people know about our classes".

Executive director Sue Cipin said lip-reading was vital to people with hearing impairment.

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