Community life

Young fundraisers answer call to No.10

September 17, 2009

Sarah Brown welcomed four bar- and batmitzvah celebrants to 10 Downing Street to mark the formal launch of a UJIA scheme to encourage teenage philanthropy.

Gabi Mendelsohn, Ella Krikler, Jake Libson and Sally Patterson are among the first participants in myfund, promoting charitable giving within the Jewish or wider community. Also present was Jacob Harris, who will be signing up next year.

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MP admires Charedi housing

By Robyn Rosen, September 17, 2009

Political praise for the Agudas Israel Housing Association’s recession-busting work for the Charedi community in Stamford Hill and beyond was expressed at its AGM.

Hackney North Labour MP Diane Abbott wished “all the social housing in Hackney was kept as nicely as Agudas [sites]. If you have Agudas as a neighbour, you will have beautiful properties, beautifully designed and beautifully maintained.”

London’s Deputy Mayor Sir Simon Milton hailed the association as “a credit to the Jewish community, to Hackney and to London”.

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Cash boost for hate crime fight

By Robyn Rosen, September 17, 2009

The Community Security Trust has been awarded more than £50,000 by the Home Office to back the fight against antisemitism.

CST is one of 10 organisations working on behalf of hate crime victims to receive government support.

It will spend the £54,354 on specialist training for staff and volunteers who deal directly with hate crime victims — and to increase awareness of the importance of reporting hate crimes to the police and the CST.

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School goes outside the faith to fill

By Simon Rocker, September 17, 2009

Ilford Jewish Primary School is accepting pupils from other faiths because there have been insufficient Jewish children to fill places.

Headteacher Roz Levin said that for the second academic year, non-Jewish children had been admitted “due to the fact that we are not oversubscribed”.

Five of this year’s 31 entrants to the reception class are not Jewish. Their families understood “we are a Jewish school and we only teach Judaism”, the head explained.

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Twiggy: My Jewish family connections

By Robyn Rosen, September 17, 2009

Twiggy has spoken about her Jewish family — and her desire to visit Israel.

Before addressing a packed World Jewish Relief women’s lunch in Watford on Tuesday, the fashion icon and actress revealed that her maternal grandfather, who died when she was three, was Jewish. Her actor husband Leigh Lawson — who accompanied her to the lunch — is also halachically Jewish and they had hired a genealogist to discover more about their families.

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Bournemouth Reform split deepens

September 17, 2009

A special meeting of Bournemouth Reform Synagogue has failed to avert a breakaway by members dissatisfied with the shul’s direction.

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Luton's home win draws an encouraging crowd

By Jay Grenby, September 10, 2009

Fifty people attended the first Shabbat service at Luton Hebrew Congregation’s new synagogue, over double the normal turnout.

“We wanted to move in before the High Holy-Days to iron out any difficulties that might arise before we welcome a full house,” explained treasurer Jeff Solomons.

“But although the first service was meant to be relatively low key, we did organise a special kiddush which coincided with the 40th wedding anniversaries of two of our members.”

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Dream team are taking on Jordan

By Chloe Markowicz, September 10, 2009

Three Essex women are among a group of five trekking through the Jordanian desert to raise funds for a charity working to grant the wishes of children with serious illness or disabilities.

The women include Avril Mills, who founded The Dream Factory after her nine-year-old son Oliver died from leukaemia 10 years ago. The others are Hayley Bloom and Melanie Brown.

Ms Mills had been inspired by Oliver’s delight when she helped him realise his dream of meeting EastEnders stars Ross Kemp, Martine McCutcheon and Sid Owen.

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Sephardi minyan launches in Elstree

By Jay Grenby, September 10, 2009

A Morning service in Allum Hall, Borehamwood, tomorrow is the latest step towards a Sephardi minyan for the Borehamwood and Elstree area.

Among the minyan founders is banker Daniel Cuceiro, originally from Spain, who joined the local Federation shul when his family moved to Borehamwood four years ago. He came to realise that there were many other Sephardim in the area who attended Orthodox synagogues and shared his desire to worship according to their own traditions.

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Orthodox get a tonic from NHS

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 10, 2009

A £100,000 NHS pilot scheme to offer culturally sensitive healthcare to strictly Orthodox Salford families was rolled out to local health professionals on Tuesday at the Hershel Weiss Surestart family centre.

They were told that imminent trial services would include a post-natal counsellor and a male health worker recruited from the local community.

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