Team effort puts Liverpool back on map

A Chinese-themed charity ball helped Liverpool JSoc's committee end its year in office in style.

The ball was the culmination of a year of hard work which has seen the society re-establish the city as a popular venue for Jewish students.

JSoc co-chair Josh Plotnek said: "For many years, Liverpool JSoc suffered low interest, poor membership figures and a level of negligence which left many believing Liverpool as a city was dead to Jewish students.

"The final blow came in the closing of the Greenbank Hillel House more than five years ago."

The future looks very bright for Jewish students on Merseyside

However, the past two years have seen a resurgence of interest, driven by the JSoc committee. A range of events, held mainly at the city's remaining eight-room Hillel centre, have led to the most successful years of the past decade by the Mersey.

Earlier in the year the city's Booze for Jews event attracted more than 70 students from around the country. Friday night dinners have seen a steady increase from an average of 25 people a week last year to more than 40 in recent months.

Other JSoc-organised events have included a blood-donor drive, social action projects and nights out. Players were also sent to take part in the Juefa Cup football tournament for the first time. Liverpool joined in the UJS's sixth form fair, which offered a chance to encourage new students to consider the city as an option.

Josh said changes had been made to diversify the JSoc, with speakers from all religious backgrounds invited to campus and sessions being organised in co-operation with pluralist group Jeneration.

He added: "What separates Liverpool JSoc from others is its close-knit charm and our strong relationship with the local community. Despite the growth this has not been lost. The future now looks very bright."

    Last updated: 11:31am, March 17 2011