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JFSA-NW rebrands program to honor Ruth and Irving Olson

Ruth and Irving Olson

In 2019 the Northwest Division will organize its activities as The Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life in the Northwest,” says Alan Kendal, advisory council chair for the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Northwest Division. Stuart Mellan, JFSA president and CEO, made the formal announcement during the… Read more »

Tucson firefighters see counterparts in action on Israel mission

Members of the November 2018 Firefighters Without Borders mission pose with soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces 118th Division Tank Battalion in the Golan Heights, (L-R): Eliot Anderson, Scott Peru, Ted Geare, K. Paul Maxwell, Kris Blume, Steve Lunde. (Courtesy Firefighters Beyond Borders)

Tucson Firefighters Beyond Borders completed its third mission to Israel last month under an unexpected hail of missiles. That only added a new dimension to the multi-faceted, cross-cultural and cross-technology educational exchanges that began in 2013, according to the six participants. The delegation left Tucson on Nov. 6, spending… Read more »

JFCS therapist and 1st-Rate thrift store create cozy office on shoestring budget

Anjulie Pfeifer wanted her office at Jewish Family & Children’s Services to feel homey. (Micheal Romero)

Visiting counselor Anjulie Pfeifer’s office is like visiting grandma’s house. Or going to a hipster coffee shop. Or seeing Smokey Bear’s cabin. At least that is what her clients at Jewish Family & Children’s Services say when they walk across the threshold of her office. Scenic paintings line the… Read more »

Tucson Federation develops and funds creative, relevant community programs

Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona volunteer Louise Good, right, is a classroom reading tutor at Homer Davis Elementary School. (Danielle Larcom)

Editor’s Note: This is the third in a series of four articles on how the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona allocates funds. The first, in the Oct. 12 issue, focused on youth and family education programs at synagogues. The second, in the Nov. 23 issue, focused on national and… Read more »

Hebrew Free Loan of Tucson expands with employee assistance program

The Hebrew Free Loan Association of Tucson helps community members thrive. (Courtesy Hebrew Free Loan Association of Tucson)

The Hebrew Free Loan Association of Tucson has been around since 1947. Although it provides an invaluable service — granting interest-free financial assistance to those in need — its longtime president, Phil Bregman, has often called the association “the best kept secret in town.” But in the past nine… Read more »

TIHAN seeks help for locals living with HIV

Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Jewish Community Relations Council volunteers (L-R) Judy Gomez, Jim Rich, Jill Rich, Leslie Shire, and Rod Rodin (back) work with other local faith communities to support TIHAN’s Poz Café program.

T ucson Interfaith HIV/AIDS Network‘s Poz Café program provides a monthly gathering for people living with HIV. Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona funds a lunch annually and, along with local synagogues, provides volunteers to shop for food, cook and serve meals. More than 25,000 meals have been served and… Read more »

Pima County partners with lease-to-own finance company

The Industrial Development Authority of Pima County announced a new partnership Monday with Trio, an independent mortgage financing company based in Washington state. The goal is to expand access to affordable financing to qualified Pima County residents to promote homeownership through a Lease-To-Own program. “Some of our residents need… Read more »

Chanukah Cantata will bring together voices from across the Jewish community

Robert Lopez-Hanshaw is the organizer of the Chanukah Cantata (Debe Campbell)

The Tucson Jewish Community Center is hosting a Chanukah Cantata on Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m. that will feature cantors and other vocalists from multiple congregations across Tucson and the Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra in a special telling of the Hanukkah story. Robert Lopez-Hanshaw, musical director at Temple Emanu-El,… Read more »

THA fourth-graders, Tucson J preschoolers bond in Madrichim program

THA fourth-graders, Tucson J preschoolers bond in Madrichim program (Gabby Erbst)

A new program coordinated by the Tucson Hebrew Academy and the Tucson Jewish Community Center is crafting leaders out of fourth- grade students. In the Madrichim (leaders) program, the THA students visit the Tucson J to teach preschoolers about the importance of upcoming holidays. Gabby Erbst, THA director of admissions… Read more »

Tucsonans grow Path to Peace on Gaza border

Tucsonans Ron and Jacquelyn Feller at the Path to Peace wall in Netiv Ha’asara, Oct. 21 (Debe Campbell)

Netiv Ha’asara, a moshav (cooperative farming community) northwest of Israel’s Negev, in the Hof Ashkelon region, is part of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona partnership area. With pastoral charm and fragrant lemon trees, lush gardens hug its 250 cozy homes near the Mediterranean coast. In the shadow of… Read more »

JFSA funds empower Israeli partnerships

(L-R) Oshrat Barel, Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona vice president; Shneor Katash, Partnership2Gether representative in Kiryat Malachi; Hila Yogev Keren, P2G director; and Hila Kordana, P2G representative in Kiryat Malachi, at the Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly in Tel Aviv, Oct. 24. (Courtesy Jewish Agency for Israel)

Editor’s note: This is the second in a series of four articles on how the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona allocates funds. The first, in the Oct. 12 issue, focused on youth and family education programs at synagogues. Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona applies a Planning and Allocation process… Read more »

Partnership2Gether strengthens local, overseas community programs

Kiryat Malachi youth perform in an Art City production. (Jewish Agency for Israel)

Each year, Art City provides more than 200 youth in Kiryat Malachi and Hof Ashkelon, Israel, an opportunity for professional development in the performing arts. The program contributes to the community and region with cultural and social activities, empowering youth with a sense of belonging, and using creativity to… Read more »

WIC Israel trip sparks family reunion

(L-R): Chava, Isaac, Jacob, Maria, Rachel, Elisaveta, and Raya Sher in 1931 in Kirensk, a village in Siberia. (Shore Family)

The recent Weintraub Israel Center annual mission to Israel did not only build community bridges; it also mended a bridge between a local family and long-lost family members with origins in Russia. Bonnie Shore-Dombrowski, a Tucson attorney, was joined on the October trip by her two sisters, Debby Shore… Read more »

New photo exhibit at JHM examines plight of Rohingya

Rohingya men wait in line for food dispersal from aid agencies. (Andrew Stanbridge)

The Jewish History Museum is currently showing “Call Me Rohingya,” an exhibition that illuminates the persecution of Rohingya people, an ethnic minority in Burma, through the photographic works of Andrew Stanbridge. Staged in the Allen and Marianne Langer Contemporary Human Rights Gallery in the Gould Family Holocaust History Center… Read more »

Jewish thrift store plans ‘Best Of’ sales event

The 1st Rate 2nd Hand Thrift Store, Southern Arizona’s only Jewish thrift store, will hold its “Best Of” event on Thursday, Nov. 29, 6-8 p.m. The event will feature select merchandise, snacks and wine, and music by Birks Works. Held twice a year, the “Best Of” events are a… Read more »

Hadassah to host regional speaker at installation lunch

Ian Merles

Hadassah Southern Arizona will honor its 2018 Woman of the Year, install officers for 2019 and recognize its annual supporters at a luncheon on Dec. 9. Ian Merles, the annual giving officer for Hadassah West Coast Region, will be the guest speaker. Honey Manson will install the new slate… Read more »

Beauty of Shabbat transcends fear

On Friday night, Nov. 2, I entered a local synagogue with a feeling of trepidation. Could a copycat of the recent tragedy in Pittsburgh take place in Tucson? I wondered what I would do if the unthinkable happened again. Remembering how we were taught in elementary school to crouch… Read more »