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Elaine Goldstine, CEO

 
Message from the CEO of the jewish federation of Winnipeg for December

December 6, 2016

Dear Community Members,

With a recent trip to Israel still fresh in my mind, I would like to focus on what has transpired over the last few weeks. We have watched in horror the devastation in Israel as hundreds of wildfires raged throughout the country. Some of the fires were started by accident, strong winds and parched conditions, which we witnessed in the north. Federation communities across the country are working closely with agencies throughout Israel to assess ongoing and longer-term needs resulting from this disaster. All our efforts will be in partnership with other federations throughout Canada. As you may be aware, we have opened an Israel Fire Emergency Fund

While in Israel I attended Partnership 2Gether meetings. The Winnipeg Jewish community is part of a coalition of Canadian and Israeli communities dedicated to improving the social services and education in the Upper Galilee region of Israel. The committee is comprised of Canadian volunteers from Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, and the Maritimes and Israeli volunteers from Yesud Hama’ala, Kiryat Shemona, Mevoot HaHermon, Metulla, Emek HaHula, and Galil Elyon, in addition to professionals from each of the Canadian and Israel communities and the 5 mayors in the region all participating in the partnership. Winnipeg specially provides scholarships at  Tel Hai College, and funding an interactive English playground at Ramat Korizim School. As a Canadian/Israeli group, we fund a variety of programs that serve the entire region. These programs include: a rape crisis centre, several after school programs for youth at risk, a mechina for individuals with Autism, transportation to physical therapy for people with disabilities, and so much more!  

Winnipeg also has a student/teacher exchange program through Brock Corydon and Gray Academy. These schools are partnered with three in the Galilee region. The students engage in a leadership program and the teachers have professional development sessions and the opportunity to be in the classroom on exchange.  

These programs and projects all happen because of the generosity of the donors here in our Winnipeg community. Our partners cannot perform the valuable work and provide the services our community needs without the funding donors provide and this year, we are determined to meet our goal of $5.8 million. Through the support of so many, we have already raised over $4.5 million.  With your help, we can make it the rest of the way! Please consider making your gift to the CJA todayAll donations received by December 31ensure a 2016 tax receipt.

Looking more locally, I was very fortunate to meet 14 newcomers to Winnipeg. We have had focus groups to ask about their transition experience. So many wonderful talented  people have chosen Winnipeg as their home. It was inspiring to hear their stories, but what inspired me the most was their desire to give back. Many of the people I met want to help others who have gone through what they went through and learn from their experiences.  

As December approaches, I am reminded of all the ways our community shows generosity. We give so much of ourselves to make our community better. Whether it is coming out for Global Day of Jewish Learning, making calls at a telethon, participating in a Community Conversation, or giving tzedakah, so many people make the lives of others better.  

This year, Chanukah begins at sundown on December 24 and ends at sundown on January 1. Check out the community's Chanukah events offered for the whole family here.

Save the Date:

  • International Holocaust Remembrance Day Program | January 26 | Details to come

Check out photos from recent Federation events:

Happy Chanukah to you and your family and thank you.

 
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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.


Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.