JCF Grants-in-Action Update #27, May 2022
Updated: May 17, 2022
It's a bustling time of year for JCF Grants!
In a forthcoming post, we will share information about our Spring 2022 JCF Grant Award results
But for now, let's look at two recently-completed and one upcoming JCF Grants-in-Action benefiting Southern New Jersey:
Broken Glass Media, LLC (with Raab/Goodwin Center): Rebuilt from Broken Glass
The SNJ community is invited to attend a premiere screening of the documentary Rebuilt from Broken Glass on Tuesday, May 17 at 7:00 p.m. at Congregation Beth El. The cost to attend is $10 per person.
About the film, "The documentary features Beth El's own Fred Behrend. He witnessed the flames of Kristallnacht in 1938 at age 12, seeing synagogues on fire, and soon fled Nazi tyranny. Several years after entering America, he would earn a personal victory over the Nazis, teaching democracy as a GI to German POWs. At age 92, however, he discovered that a miracle still awaited: one that was exactly 80 years in the making."
Kellman Brown Academy: Preschool "Plays"
On May 1, Kellman Brown Academy (KBA), in conjunction with the Israeli American Council (IAC), for a traveling production of the famous Israeli storybook the 16th Sheep.
Per a recap by KBA's Shira Weinstein, this event reached was attended by approximately 80 community members, and it...
"gave KBA a chance to enhance our theater offerings to our own student families. We also, were able to welcome community families and some newly admitted students and their families to meet other KBA families and share in a special Hebrew program. Specifically, it gave us a chance to introduce local Israeli families to KBA as we co-sponsored the event with the IAC.
"The traveling production of the 16th Sheep was fabulous! The benefits of hosting this program, in addition to inspiring fun, teaching empathy, and building interest in the arts, included that we helped enrich our students and their families educationally while broadening our outreach to unaffiliated families who might be interested in Jewish Day School... Together we strengthened our partnership with the South Jersey IAC and helped preschool families interact socially after the pandemic restrictions have calmed while supporting strong Israeli and Hebrew cultural experiences. We are grateful for the support of the JCF that enabled us to offer this incredible program!"
Congregation M'kor Shalom: Shabbat Storytime
As announced in a previous JCF Blog post, Congregation M'kor Shalom recently hosted Rabbi Deborah Bodin Cohen for a Shabbat Storytime program.
Here is a touching testimonial about the program's success from Sarah Zalcmann:
"We wanted to send a note on behalf of Congregation M'kor Shalom filled with huge thanks to the Jewish Community Foundation. Because of the generosity of the foundation, we were able to have a sensational Shabbat Storytime program with Rabbi Deborah Cohen that would have otherwise been cost prohibitive. I have been engaged in volunteer youth programming for 8 years at M'kor Shalom and this was as good as our programming gets, people did not want to leave!
"At this enormously difficult time amidst the covid pandemic, which has been so painful for so many, programming like this--and watching Jewish youth happily engaged in synagogue programming is the best medicine for all of our souls. Our congregation would highly recommend Rabbi Cohen for future programs, she was so professional and engaging and her books are just beautiful. In fact, now that we have a model, we hope to be able to find ways to continue this exciting program and have Rabbi Cohen back. Having a grant to help us through our first time proved to be invaluable.
"In terms of covid, this was the part of our event of which I was proudest of our team. We planned an outdoor program because we knew that was going to appeal to the largest segment of our population of families of mostly children too young to be vaccinated. Leading up to the event, we found out that there was going to be a high risk family in attendance. Their situation is such that the children have remained out of school. They were more comfortable outdoors, but I could tell they were still apprehensive about attending and when I shared this with Jodi Levine, our Past President, she helped ensure that we would do everything in our power to make this lovely family feel included! Those of us in leadership roles at the event chose to wear our masks outdoors, and the family was so appreciative they did not have to mask alone. This to me truly represents what we as an inclusive Jewish community are trying to achieve!
"Thank you again for the generosity of JCF!"
Last, the JCF congratulates all who have been involved in launching these three initiatives to benefit South Jersey, and we will continue to get the word out about other JCF Grants-in-Action as they arise.
For questions about JCF Grants, please contact the JCF at 856-673-2528.