Community life

Survivors want their stories told

By Marcus Dysch, July 30, 2009

British Jews are asked to take a greater role in documenting the testimony of those who escaped the Shoah.

The appeal has come from Jewish Care’s Holocaust Survivors’ Centre in Hendon, which wants the wider community to help record the experiences of its 550 members, passing on the baton of remembrance for future generations.


£1m plan is not Brum and dusted

By Cathy Forman, July 30, 2009

A proposed £1 million-plus deal with a local housing association to redevelop Birmingham Central Synagogue’s Edgbaston premises has fallen through.

The shul’s 200 members had been due to be asked at the AGM to approve plans to sell two-thirds of the site to Birmingham-based housing association Optima. However, synagogue president Geoffrey Clements wrote to them explaining that Optima had been unable to secure government funding for the project.


Leeds packs proving a welcome development

By Hayden Cohen, July 30, 2009

A “Welcome to Leeds” information pack for Jews new to the city has been launched by the local representative council.

The pack was created by community development worker Neil Clarke, who said the aim was “to allow newcomers to feel at home in Leeds as soon as they arrive”.

It will include a 10 per cent discount card which can be used in the city’s kosher establishments, synagogue bookshops and at the Zone Youth Club.


Israel awash with activities for school parties

July 30, 2009

Pupils from four Jewish secondary schools have returned home enthused by their participation in the UJIA summer trip.

Over 300 13- and 14-year-olds from JFS, King Solomon and Yavneh in London and King David in Manchester trekked across the Judean desert, climbed hills in the Galil and kayaked down the Jordan River.
But there was also a practical element to the programme, with volunteering projects in different areas. For example, Yavneh pupils cleared rubbish and created visitor-friendly zones around the northern tributaries of the Jordan.


Archbishop amplified by Speakers

By Simon Rocker, July 30, 2009

A tour of the Sternberg Centre in Finchley was the first visit to a Jewish institution by Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the head of England and Wales’s Catholics, since his appointment in May.
The Archbishop of Westminster, who has become a joint president of the Council of Christians and Jews through his new office, visited at the invitation of Reform president Sir Sigmund Sternberg.

While there, he recalled one of his “most important” interfaith experiences, which occurred a few years ago during his time as Archbishop of Birmingham.


Golfers chip in for aid transport

July 23, 2009

Two 40ft trailers will deliver urgent supplies to needy Jews in Belarus and Moldova as a result of the £28,500 raised from World Jewish Relief’s golf day at Hartsbourne Country Club, Bushey.

The 96 competitors were supporting WJR’s Gifts in Kind programme, which has sent over £17 million of humanitarian aid abroad in the last five years. Goods such as clothes, shoes, bedding, toys and essential toiletries are donated by individuals and communities across the UK. Contributions include new stock from manufacturers and distributors.


Donisthorpe trains with EU cash

July 23, 2009

A European Union grant of £109,000 to Leeds residential home Donisthorpe Hall will fund training for young locals looking for a career in social care.

Donisthorpe will be recruiting 12 trainees aged between 17 and 25 for a 14-week project which includes work experience at a care home in Malta.

Chief executive Carol Whitehead was “thrilled” at the success of its funding bid. “We are looking forward to working with our partners in both the UK and Malta to provide a valuable transferable training experience in care. We have already had a lot of interest in the project.”


Teens enjoy scientific breakthrough in Israel

By Jessica Elgot, July 23, 2009

Nine budding British scientists are being mentored by top Israelis during a research trip to the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot.

The A-level pupils were awarded scholarships to the Weizmann summer science programme and are spending a month covering subjects from biology to computer science.


Minister hails Leeds sheltered housing

By Cathy Forman, July 23, 2009

Housing Minister John Healey made a fact-finding trip to Leeds Jewish Housing Association last Friday.

The visit was arranged at short notice after the newly-appointed minister and Wentworth, south Yorkshire, MP had asked to see an exemplar sheltered housing scheme. LJHA’s Skyte House was recommended to him by Naz Parkar, head of investment for the Homes and Communities Agency in Leeds.


Manchester school wins government accolade

July 23, 2009

Manchester Mesivta has been recognised by the government as a specialist college in mathematics and computing.

Delighted headmaster Phaivish Pink said its elevated status reflected “the outstanding teaching and results of the mathematics and computer departments”.

It obligated the voluntary-aided school — established in 2004 as a successor to Manchester Jewish Grammar — to share its good practice with other schools and to assist community groups.