With one month of 2024 already under our belt, we continue to embark on a challenging journey for our local Jewish community in Australia and around the world. The past few months have been a wake-up call, shedding light on the surge of prejudice as we grapple with an unsettling reality in a place previously known for its multicultural harmony.
We must stand together against this rising tide of discrimination – fighting antisemitism is a shared responsibility. Our JCA supported organisations – the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, AUJS and CSG continue to advocate for and keep us safe. I hope that we will be the community championing a society that upholds the principles of inclusivity, respect and acceptance while we collectively eradicate antisemitism from our midst.
May the coming months bring more hope to our community as well as to those in Israel waiting for the release of our hostages and peace.
Am Yisrael Chai,
Ian Sandler President
Monthly Mensch Rose Temple OAM
Our Rose has been honoured today with an OAM – something we have been waiting for and is something so well deserved. Rose is our permanent volunteer and has been with JCA for over 30 years. She joins us four days a week undertaking some of our most critical database tasks – recording comings, goings and celebrations in our community. If you’ve received a card in the mail or by email from JCA – that’s our Rose! She is also the power behind JCA’s telephone campaigns and continues to engage with our community, rallying the troops annually to call donors and help to ensure that our campaign is successful.
A year ago Rose was quoted as saying, "I have volunteered for JCA for over 30 years because no other organisation in the community supports such a diverse range of local Jewish community groups. I want this community to thrive and survive for my children, grandchildren and beyond. I want them to understand their past, preserve our institutions for the future and protect us daily."
A true eshet chayil – mazeltov to Rose and her family on this incredible achievement.
Member Mention Maccabi NSW
Maccabi’s 42nd Carnival took place last week with Sydney with the Maccabi NSW family graciously opening their arms to 400 participants from around Australia, offering them a week filled with sports, social activities, community service, and an abundance of camaraderie. A whirlwind of events, the unwavering support from youth leaders, team managers, and volunteers made the non-stop program feel like a fabulous adventure for all who took part.
Eight different sports were played throughout Sydney accompanied by a special community day, social parties and finally the culmination of an emotional Kabbalat Shabbat made the carnival the socially, physically and emotionally enriching experience it was. As always, “Carni” is geared towards deepening the bond within the Jewish community between young people from interstate, building relationships that will be forever. Next year’s Carnival will take place in Perth with organisers already working on a week to remember.
Nosh Nook Lili's Poppy Seed Potatoes
Meet Lili Paxton a new member of the Social Media team at the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies. In her own words, here goes. "I'm Lili Paxton, and I just moved to Sydney all the way from the USA, Oregon more specifically, or as I describe it to Aussies, 'the state above California.' I grew up in the Portland area, which you may know from the show Portlandia and our penchant for craft beer, or our constant rainy weather. I moved to Australia in September and spent a few weeks travelling up the East Coast before settling in Sydney where I have been lucky enough to make so many connections through the Jewish community, including starting my job at the NSWJBD.
My favourite thing to do is travel and it has taken me from attending college in Massachusetts to teaching English in Spain, and now I am enjoying exploring Australia. I also love to fangirl over Jewish artists, like my favourite musician Noah Kahan, and my favourite TV shows, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Broad City."
My family's Poppy Seed Potatoes: Make this for your next family gathering to stun your family with this ultra-decadent American potato dish that will be spoken about for years to follow. While this recipe includes most amounts, it is usually eyeballed for optimal 'moisture' as my late grandmother said.
3 parts sour cream
1 part mayo
½ part plain Greek yogurt
Shredded cheddar cheese
Poppy seeds (though in the name, these are optional but add a nice visual appeal)
Boil 8-10 potatoes then let them cool
Cut potatoes in half and grate on a box grater so that there isn't too much skin included. This part is a bit labour-intensive but key for the recipe.
Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius
Put in a large bowl and add the sour cream, mayo, Greek yogurt, and shredded cheese. Should be enough to incorporate all of the potato shreds and make a bit of an odd sound when you mix. (See the picture for an idea of how it looks.)
Mix and taste test for optimal 'moisture.' Don't disappoint my grandmother, so make sure not to hold back on the moisture.
Add spring onion, enough to have incorporated a bit throughout. Add salt and pepper to taste. And poppy seeds.
Place potato mixture in a baking dish and cover with a layer of shredded cheese and cover with foil. Bake at 175 for 30 minutes then take off foil and bake for another 15 minutes until cheese is melted and they smell so good you can no longer wait.
Enjoy and wait for the compliments to roll in. An unfortunate side effect of this dish is that all other potatoes will taste bland compared. Perfectly paired with some salmon and a salad. Or alone, straight from the dish.
New Arrivals Welcoming FacesJewishCare NSW
JewishCare welcomes Neta Amit, who will be facilitating our new supported day program alongside Allyson Lore. For the past two years, Neta has been a Rehabilitation Leader and Woodshop Manager at Summit Organisation, Yatzir Kapaim in Israel. In his role, he provided support for the rehabilitation of young adults experiencing challenges with their mental health, helping them develop essential skills and integrate into the community. We are so excited to have Neta as part of our team!
Moriah College is excited to start the 2024 academic year with Mira Hasofer at the helm, as the school’s new College Principal. At her core, Mira is a proud Moriah alumnus and her historic appointment as both the first graduate and first woman to hold the position of College Principal is an exciting step as the College moves into a new era.
An exceptional, inspirational educator and motivational leader, Mira deeply values the pillars and ethos upon which Moriah College stands. She prides herself as a listener, collaborator and creative thinker who has a gift for bringing people together, achieving goals and establishing an environment in which the people around her flourish.
“Following in the footsteps of the inspirational leaders of Moriah College during my time as a student, I am passionate about fostering within students a desire to achieve their personal best, a commitment to act with kindness, celebrate learning and to take responsibility for shaping a Jewish Sydney future that we can all be proud of,” Mira said.
“In this new role for 2024, my priorities will include a focus on academic excellence through exceptional secular and Jewish education and attracting and retaining the most outstanding educators and support staff. The role aligns itself with my personal values of Chesed, Tzedek and Derech Eretz and an education that draws on the potential of every student and speaks to their core being.”
Our Generous Community Steps Up An Update
Never Again Response Appeal (NARA) led by JCA
In December we launched a solely established appeal separate to JCA's annual general campaign, enabling us to fund increasing resources and needs for our frontline advocacy and security organisations. To date, 915 members of our community have generously contributed to the Never Again Response Appeal and we have raised $485,240 to ensure that our local Jewish community is safe, supported, connected and represented.
If you haven't yet donated to this Appeal, you can still do so by clicking here or calling the office on (02) 93602344.
Thank you in advance. As always, Am Yisrael Chai.
Last year we welcomed 425 new donors to JCA. We look forward to growing each of these relationships as we collectively commit to building a world-class Jewish community that is thriving and inclusive always.
Coming Up In Community Events & Activities
Natif Program: Every second Sunday, starting from 25 Feb, 3.30 – 5PM - Enrol Here
A BJE Jewish Journey Coming-of-Age Program, that is ‘an alternate to’ or ‘in addition to’ traditional shul-based Bat or Bar Mitzvah
If you have ever thought about joining CSG NSW, this is your opportunity to hear about what it takes to volunteer with us. We have upcoming information evenings for young adults (aged 18-27) and adults aged 28+ who are in good physical health. We invite members of our community to register their interest here.
Parents of Rainbow Youth: Tuesday 27 February 2024, 6:30 - 8:30PM - Book Here
Rainbow Youth Group: Tuesday 13 February 2024, 4:30 - 6:00PM - Book Here
Driving Values Retreat: 29 February - 3 March - Sign Up
Are you aged 20 - 40 and looking to connect with other young people on a Jewish identity and social justice Retreat! 🔥 Join Stand Up and Shalom for a weekend away to explore the values that drive your engagement with community, social justice, and expressing your Jewish identity. This weekend will be facilitated by staff from both organisations and external facilitators.
This year, our space will come alive with enchanting musical portraits of Jewish people and culture, through a lineup of diverse and internationally acclaimed artists. Audiences will be transported across the globe and through time during these evocative performances, each illuminating a different element of Judaism and Jewish life.
A ticket to events within this series includes complimentary refreshments, as well as a pass to explore the Museum and all of our exhibitions from 6pm, before the show starts at 7pm
Job Opportunities in our community
B'nai B'rith Retirement Villages Ltd Village Manager (Kadimah Gardens Retirement Village) Click HERE for more info