WEEKLY UPDATES 11.2.18 – JEWISH NATIONAL FUND
Dear JNF Campaign Leaders:
TREE OF LIFE CONGREGATION, PITTSBURGH
Like you, I was shocked to hear about the tragic event at Tree of Life Congregation in Pittsburgh last Shabbat. We were gathered in Phoenix for the JNF National Conference when news broke about the savage murder of 11 of our brothers and sisters and the wounding of many others, simply because they were Jews. Several JNF leaders traveled to Pittsburgh to share in the grief with our extended family, including Ronald S. Lauder, Chairman Emeritus of JNF.Dar Nadler and Zohar Vloski from the JNF professional team represented our Israel family in solidarity with the Pittsburgh Jewish community, and our JNF Board of Directors in Pittsburgh headed up by President Steven Schwartz and Western Pennsylvania Director, Amy Cohen joined as well. Our hearts go out to all the families who lost loved ones and refuah shlemah to those who were injured.
May the memory of those killed forever be a blessing:
Joyce Feinberg, 75
Richard Gottfried, 65
Rose Mallinger, 97
Jerry Rabinowitz, 66
Cecil Rosenthal, 59
David Rosenthal, 54
Bernice Simon, 84
Sylvan Simon, 86
Daniel Stein, 71
Melvin Wax, 88
Irving Younger, 69
Bruce K. Gould
President Elect and Vice President, Campaign
Travel & Tours Update
Alexander Muss High School in Israel
Our campus hosted our bi-annual “Get Back to Israel Fair” this week, including organizations representing a myriad of opportunities for our students to come back to Israel via programs through HaShomer HaChadash, MASA, The Technion, and many more! This was our most successful fair yet, with a great showing of organizations arriving and palpable enthusiasm from our students.
Updates from Israel
JNF Ronald S. Lauder Fellowships
The JNF Ronald S. Lauder Fellowship program keeps talented engineers in the Negev through placing them in a hands-on summer internship at top Negev companies including SodaStream and Netafim. Fellows additionally meet for a career course to learn soft skills such as how to work on a team and communicating with one’s boss. In the pilot program in 2017, 90% of the fellows chose to stay and work in the Negev. In 2018, we partnered with Sapir Academic College and the Technological College of Be’er Sheva. Both colleges now offer students the choice of completing a final project or a 3 month internship to graduate. As a result, we had over 100 applicants compete for 21 spots.
“I had been skeptical about this program, because an internship program had never been done before in our department. However, I myself I am an engineer, and I know the importance of having someone open a door for you in the field. And that’s what this program does. We are opening the door, so students have the opportunity to walk through, work hard, and succeed.” Dan Freifeld, Head of the Media Design Department at Sapir College
Open House Jerusalem
This October, the city of Jerusalem showcased its many unique buildings as part of Open House Jerusalem. This event is part of the Open House Worldwide initiative which seeks to showcase great architecture, free of charge, in participating cities. During Open House Jerusalem, hundreds of spaces, including historical buildings, private homes, religious institutions, gardens, galleries, and more, were open to the public to visit. Among these spaces, several Heritage Sites participated in the Open House weekend, including the Underground Prisoner’s museum, the Levi Eshkol House, Poet Shai Agnon’s home, and more. Events like this provide the public with a fun and engaging way to learn about Israel’s heritage sites, as well as preservation work throughout the city of Jerusalem.
Supporting those with Special Needs
Beyond supporting the Special in Uniform program, Jewish National Fund is also ensuring that our soldiers with disabilities enjoy forests, parks, and inclusive nature trails. Every month our soldiers go on trips, including to Jewish National Fund parks such as Emek HaShalom, a completely accessible nature preserve that is totally wheelchair-friendly (and also run by JNF partner LOTEM).