Community life

Light 'virtual candle' for Holocaust Memorial Day

January 21, 2010

In the run-up to Holocaust Memorial Day on Wednesday, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust is urging people to become involved by “lighting” a virtual candle at the www.hmd.org.uk website.

Organisers say this will signify “a commitment to helping build a safer, inclusive society where differences are respected”.

This year’s theme is “The Legacy of Hope” and marks the 65th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration camp. Events will be held throughout the country.

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Tories courting the Manchester vote

By Jonathan Kalmus, January 21, 2010

Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague became the most senior Tory figure to back Michelle Wiseman’s campaign to unseat Labour minister Ivan Lewis in Bury South when he addressed 70 Manchester Jewish community members at Whitefield Golf Club.

Mr Hague took questions on Conservative policy and his own political career. Martin Gilbert, who asked about simplifying benefits, was impressed by his competence.

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Rabbi thrives in shadowy role

By Robyn Rosen, January 21, 2010

Standing in front of a class of 14-year-old grammar school girls explaining the Jewish perspective on sex before marriage and homosexuality would seem daunting to most. But it is just another day at the office for Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner.

The JC accompanied Rabbi Janner-Klausner to the Henrietta Barnett School in north London as part of a Leo Baeck College initiative giving those contemplating a rabbinical career the opportunity to shadow Progressive ministers.

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Volunteer of the week

January 21, 2010

Adele Barbanel

JEWISH CARE

The 59-year-old has volunteered at Jewish Care’s Redbridge Jewish Community Centre since 1996

Why Jewish Care?
I was watching a television programme featuring the Chief Rabbi visiting Jewish Care’s homes and thought to myself that I would like to be involved with something similar.

What does your current volunteering role involve?

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Chabad celebrates learning by phone

By Robyn Rosen, January 21, 2010

Chabad Lubavitch is celebrating an educational landmark ‑— 100,000 hours of learning by telephone through its Tel-Torah project.

Set up eight years ago by Chabad Lubavitch of Edgware and available in English and Yiddish, the programme offers 19 topics as well as a daily shiur, children’s stories and “pick a mishnah” facility.

Chabad Lubavitch UK chief exexcutive Rabbi Bentzi Sudak said: “This is a wonderful achievement and just goes to show the importance of self-learning.

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Terror victims meet Harry Potter star

January 21, 2010

A group of Israeli victims of terror enjoyed dinner with Harry Potter star Emma Watson on Sunday.

The Israelis, visiting under the aegis of One Family, spotted Watson at The Grove in Watford. When one introduced himself to the actress, she left her friends to join their table, signing autographs and talking about her career.

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Communities Minister backs faith schools

January 21, 2010

Communities Minister Shahid Malik has emphasised the government’s support for faith schools to an audience of community leaders, attacking the notion that they are damaging community cohesion.

Mr Malik addressed a Jewish Leadership Council lunch at the Met Su Yan restaurant in Golders Green attended by key staff of over 40 organisations, including the Board of Deputies, UJIA, Jewish Care, Norwood and the Jewish Lads’ and Girls’ Brigade.

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Elstree to add a rabbi

January 21, 2010

Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue is to appoint an associate rabbi to extend religious, educational and pastoral services to the growing community of 1,300 families.

Shul chair Anthony Arnold said the appointment was “something that has long been needed and is essential to the continued growth, support and development of our members”. It was “an opportunity to build a rabbinic team of diverse personalities and talents that in combination will be twice as effective”.

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King Solomon satisfied with its Ofsted ruling

January 21, 2010

The King Solomon High School in Redbridge has received a positive report from Ofsted inspectors, whose main concern was that more able pupils were not making the progress they were capable of.

Ofsted rated the school as good in most categories and outstanding in a few. It noted that headteacher Spencer Lewis had “worked tirelessly since his appointment two years ago to improve the standard of education students receive and his work has been successful.

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Growing offshoot of Tribe

January 21, 2010

Almost 1,000 twentysomething singles have signed up to the community membership programme administered by Tribe, the United Synagogue youth arm.

For a £5 monthly fee, the programme offers full synagogue membership, including burial rights, plus event discounts and special activities.

“It is a myth that the United Synagogue is an old fashioned organisation with nothing to appeal to young adults,” said Tribe executive director Rabbi Andrew Shaw. “We have worked hard to engage with young people.”

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