Via donor funds, JCF awards 13 grants in Tucson, Israel

The Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona has announced its 2012 grants. The William and Doris Rubin Endowment Fund, which focuses on helping those in need move toward self-sufficiency, played a pivotal role in this year’s grants, providing about 80 percent of total funding available. Over the past five… Read more »

Yom Hazikaron service to honor fallen Israelis

The Weintraub Israel Center will hold its annual Yom Hazikaron memorial service in honor of fallen Israeli soldiers and victims of terror on Wednesday, April 25 at 6:30 p.m. at the Tucson Jewish Community Center. The program will include an honor guard from the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, prayers,… Read more »

Lightman foundation seeks grant applications

The Steven A. Lightman Family Foundation has announced its 2012 call for grants. The Lightman Foundation is a supporting foundation of the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona. Qualifying organizations are nonprofits whose services and programs make a difference in people’s lives. Organizations may be from Tucson or around… Read more »

Handmaker plans life-long learning series

Handmaker Jewish Services for the Aging will present monthly events celebrating life-long learning in May, June and July. The program will kick off with “Between the Lines: A Conversation with Local Authors” on Thursday, May 10 at 1:30 p.m. Sheila Wilensky, associate editor of the Arizona Jewish Post, will… Read more »

Women to craft Beads of Courage bracelets

Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona will hold a “BEad Inspired” night of fun, social action and tasty treats on Wednesday, May 2 at 7 p.m. at the home of Melissa Goldfinger. Participants can make a bracelet for Beads of Courage and one for themselves or… Read more »

Task force creates survey on disability needs

The Senior Task Force of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona has changed its name to Task Force for Jewish Seniors and Adults with Disabilities. The task force has created a survey to assess the needs and interests of local Jewish adults with disabilities, which will be online through… Read more »

Temple ECE adds Spanish bilingual program

The Olga and Bob Strauss Center for Early Childhood Education at Temple Emanu-El will be starting a Spanish bilingual preschool program for 3-,4- and 5-year-olds beginning Aug. 1. The program was requested by ECE families. Zoila Scott, who will implement the Spanish immersion program, has a bachelor of science… Read more »

Lawyers’ group to explore professional ethics

The Tucson Cardozo Society of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona will present a breakfast seminar, “Ethics and Professionalism,” with speakers Stanley Feldman, Dennis Rosen and Lowell Rothschild, hosted by Mark Rubin, on Thursday, May 3 at 8:30 a.m. the Tucson Jewish Community Center. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m.… Read more »

Sanctuary ramp at CAI promotes inclusion

The new ramp makes it easy for wheelchair-bound members of the congregation to come up to the bimah for an aliyah.

The dream of wheelchair-bound congregants at Congregation Anshei Israel — to ascend to the bimah like everyone else — has become reality. The congregation’s new wheelchair-accessible ramp, which bridges the previous divide, was dedicated at a Saturday morning Shabbat service on March 24. “I’ve been extremely frustrated that people… Read more »

Marking 25 years, March of the Living uniting survivors with liberators in Poland

Young Jews entering the gates of Auschwitz-Birkenau Extermination Camp in Poland during the 2010 March of the Living. (March of Living International)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Bernhard Storch grew up in a Jewish family in Silesia, near Poland’s border with Germany. Like many Polish Jews, he moved quickly from town to town as the Nazis advanced in 1939, trying to avoid capture. Before long he was caught and sent to a… Read more »

Israel must overhaul education system

NEW YORK (JTA) — The teacher stands in front of the sparse classroom, its walls bare and paint peeling. “This school looks like a prison,” one of my fellow travelers whispers. Many of the children are huddled in coats; schools in this neighborhood do not have heat, and the… Read more »

YOM HASHOAH FEATURE: Monument honors helpers of Czech Jewish family that hid in woods from Nazis

Eva Vavrecka contemplating the horrific living conditions that her mother and grandparents endured in the forest to survive World War II. (Bruce Konviser)

TRSICE, Czech Republic (JTA) — Nearly 70 years after a Czech Jewish family sought refuge from the Nazis by retreating into a nearby forest and relying on non-Jewish locals for help, an American high school teacher has helped erect a permanent monument to their memory. Last week, several dozen… Read more »

With Sacks retiring, British Jews mixed on relevancy of chief rabbi

After 21 years, Rabbi Jonathan Sacks is retiring as Britain's chief rabbi. (United Synagogue)

(JTA) — The search to replace Britain’s powerful longtime chief rabbi has gone international, but even as resumes are gathered and interviews conducted, some are questioning whether the position is still relevant and what it means today for the Anglo Jewish community. As chief rabbi, Lord Jonathan Sacks brought… Read more »

Jerusalem mall violence shines light on dark side of Israeli soccer

Fans of Beitar Jerusalem FC celebrate a win in the State Cup in Ramat Gan Stadium on May 13, 2008. (Kobi Gideon/FLASH90/JTA)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Sports fans aren’t the only people lately paying attention to Israeli soccer. A string of ugly incidents has caused Israelis to focus on the problems of violence and racism within the sport. In mid-March, thousands of Hapoel Tel Aviv fans rioted on the field after their… Read more »

ESSAY: Reflections from Mike Wallace

The following excerpt written by Mike Wallace is from “I Am Jewish: Personal Reflections Inspired by the Last Words of Daniel Pearl.”  © 2005 Dr. Judea and Ruth Pearl. Wallace was senior correspondent on “60 Minutes” and was  a reporter for CBS News for more than four decades. (JTA)… Read more »

Israeli female scientist Naama Geva-Zatorsky named Europe’s top young researcher

JERUSALEM (JTA) — She’s young, smart and aims to help treat life-threatening diseases. Naama Geva-Zatorsky, 34, is among a growing group of Israeli women scientists who are gaining recognition for their contributions to scientific research. The Weizmann Institute biologist was in Paris last month to accept the International UNESCO… Read more »