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all photos by Matthew Ostrove


Matthew Ostrove



by Matthew Ostrove, November 15, 2010

Over 50 Jewish young professionals, ages 22-35 , who are part of the young adult leadership division of the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg attended a special Friday evening event, “Fall into Shabbat”   held at The Whyte Ridge Community Centre on October 29 . 

The event launched J-PEG’s new division called  “Jew… Ish”, initiated by Einat Meneshe and Sandra Finkelstein, both recent graduates of the Jewish Federations' program Club Fed. 

Finkelstein, who was born in Argentina and immigrated to Winnipeg from Israel told the Winnipeg Jewish Review, “One of our goals is to get other people involved in the building of this group. We want new and fresh ideas. Every person is unique and can add a different perspective to the group.”
Samatha Loxton, the new director of J-PEG said, “The group that Sandra and Einat started…encourages opportunities for social interaction among young Jewish professionals to meet and connect with each other with the goal of building friendships and [strengthening]o ur Jewish community.”
Following a traditional Shabbat service, Michael Soberman, the Director of National Initiatives for the Next Generation at UIA Federations Canada, gave a keynote address which was humourous, interesting, and inspiring. Trained as both a lawyer and a teacher, Soberman said he chose to pursue a career in the Jewish world, because he felt he “can make a difference.”
Soberman has also been the lead educator for the RJCO Holocaust Education Teacher Training program that is offered to Faculties of Education and school boards across the country. He has worked in fundraising, community development and informal Jewish education. He has also travelled to every continent on the planet, (he competes with his sister to see who can travel to more countries).
Soberman spoke from the heart about how he found Judaism wherever he travelled around the world. For example, in Antarctica he found a strange site of “penguins praying as if they were Jews at the Wailing Wall” with the wind blowing them back and forth. He stressed that Judaism has withstood the test of time, notwithstanding that many enemies have tried to destroy the Jewish people. He said that it is up to our generation to keep Judaism alive “by writing the next chapter.”
Paul Myerson, business administration student at the University of Winnipeg said, “It was great to see some old friends and to make new ones and it was also really nice to hear from Michael Soberman about his travels and Judaism.”
 J-PEG volunteer Caithlan McArton said,” I think community events like these bring our Jewish community together and provide an opportunity to reflect on what being Jewish means to all of us which was the topic of Soberman’s speech.” 
Ran Ukashi said, “It was a well attended event. It was obvious from the organization of the dinner that lots of energy went into making it happen.”
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