Topic: From Our Friends

Listen Ya’ll! | D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Alex Voynow – Jewish Farm School  Parshat Haazinu [NOTE: Applications for the next JOFEE Fellowship cohort are open now through October 5! Apply today!] In Ha’azinu, Moses sees the Israelites for who they are: humans, scarred by 40 years of impatient wandering and in no mood to listen obediently. Moses is 120 years old and holds so much wisdom; this is the last day before his death, and he has some things to say. He has the story of his life to tell, which in his epic personal union with the Israelite people is also the story of God. He needs them to understand, like the tender, concerned patriarch that he is, how to live in God’s favor so they can blossom into the promised land and not mess up this covenant (fast-forward: oops).   What he has to say is so important that he does something that really resonates with me. Moses speaks language that heaven and earth themselves will understand, and in a language that will more likely move the people: in song. He launches into a 48-verse poem doing his damnedest to sum up his life’s spiritual learnings. I’m not going to get into it because it’s densely […]

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The Binary of One | D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Sofia Marbach – Wilderness Torah Parshat Re’eh I set before you today a blessing and a curse; The blessing, that you will heed the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you today; and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn away from the way I command you this day, to follow other gods, which you did not know. — Deuteronomy 11:26-28 Yikes! The first lines of Re’eh present us with a terrifying binary: choose to follow closely each commandment or consider yourself cursed by God. If we opt out of the choosing, what does Judaism leave for us? The text goes on to list detailed instructions for violence against those who might persuade you to worship the gods of other peoples, and against the idols of those who tended your land before. This is the kind of violence that mirrors and reinforces patriarchal systems of dominance and oppression lived today and throughout history. So how do we grapple with guidelines for patriarchal violence in our holiest book — a violence that divides us into binary understandings of the world? How do we connect to tradition as “People of the […]

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Reflections on Kindness | D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Brenden Jackson – Amir with Shalom Community Farm Houston Parshat Eikev In Parshat Eikev, Moses calls upon his people to reflect on their past in order to remember and obtain the future that was promised to them. As they prepare to enter the Promised Land, the lines blur between past transgressions, promises, sufferings and joys, made inseparable from the current joy at the edge of the holy land. As summer comes to a close here in Houston, so does summer camp programming, which means ending my mentor role with summer farmers and transitioning to fall programming. With the end of the summer chapter, I find myself guided by Moses’s reflections while I enter the reflection stage of this particular learning cycle. Here in Houston, we have several projects occurring and converging at one time: On the one hand, we have Shalom Community Farm – a Jewishly centered agriculture program aimed at connecting flora and Torah for community members. On the other hand, we are developing a Garden Kitchen program with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Houston, where I grow, harvest, and prepare produce with different community members. While in many ways these projects are totally separate, Amir has […]

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“Down To Earth” Judaism | D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Chayei Sarah Darya Watnick | Edlavitch DC JCC – Washington, DC  This week’s Torah portion is Chayei Sarah, literally “The Life of Sarah.” The title is a bit of a misnomer, as Sarah dies in the second verse. This portion instead focuses on Sarah’s legacy — specifically Abraham and Isaac, those most influenced by her incredible life. It’s a legacy all about family life and connection to tradition – a story that mirrors much of my work here at the DC JCC as a JOFEE Fellow. Here’s what happens in Chayei Sarah, in a nutshell: Sarah dies at age 127 and is buried in the Cave of Machpelah, in Hebron, which Abraham buys from Ephron the Hittite. Abraham then sends his servant Eliezer to find a wife for Isaac. In order to find the right woman, Eliezer devises the “camel test”:when he asks for water at the well, which woman will also offer to give his camels a drink. Rebecca passes the test and returns with Eliezer to Isaac and Abraham. Isaac and Rebecca get married. Then Abraham takes a new wife, Keturah, and has six more sons. Abraham dies at the age of 175 and is buried next to Sarah, […]

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Open your heart, Open your hand – D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Becky Adelberg, JCC Chicago Parshat Re’eh Editor’s Note: Welcome to D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog! This is our inaugural post. Most weeks throughout the year, you’ll be hearing from the JOFEE Fellows: reflections on their experiences, successful programs they’ve planned and implemented, gleanings from the field, and connections to the weekly Torah portion and what they’ve learned from their experiences with place in their host communities for the year. Be sure to check back weekly! PS Interested in being or hosting a JOFEE Fellow? Applications for cohort two are now open for both prospective fellows and prospective host institutions! And now, on to Becky’s post …  I’m thrilled for this opportunity to write about one of my favorite events of the year: Shabbat on the Lake. To me, Shabbat on the Lake is more than an event. It is a mindset, a movement, a gathering of all corners of the Jewish community;  it’s a tapestry of various affiliations, ways of engaging with Judaism and the possibility of a Jewish community who focuses on things that unite us as opposed to what divides us. Shabbat on the Lake’s inception at JCC Chicago arose six years ago to show young Jewish adults various ways […]

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Associate Director of Communications and Institutional Advancement at Mechon Hadar

Associate Director of Communications and Institutional Advancement Mechon Hadar is an educational institution that seeks to empower a generation of Jews to create and sustain vibrant, practicing, egalitarian communities of Torah learning, prayer, and service. Visit www.mechonhadar.org for more information. The position requires someone who is well-organized, strong on follow-through and relationship-building, creative and a quick learner. Main Responsibilities Include: Responsible for drawing people to Hadar’s programs, in collaboration with senior staff, through creative communications (this includes effective and creative use of email, Hadar’s web page, Facebook, Twitter, flyers, posters, etc.). Manage the process of upgrading Hadar’s website (with assistance from outside consultants). Be the organizational “data keeper” who manages our email lists, donors lists, and all data related to fundraising, so we can more effectively make people aware of Hadar’s activities. Help plan and run events and programs for major donors and prospective donors. Manage regular communications with our supporters – including mailings, mail merges, thank you cards, etc. Qualifications: Familiarity with and strong commitment to Mechon Hadar’s mission. Experience managing website and communications projects is a plus. Superb writing abilities; journalism experience is a plus. Strong knowledge of social media and other web based technologies. Able to perform […]

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Siach – The Impact of the Israeli Elections on Civil Society and Social Change

The Siach network invitess you to FREE Post-Election Analysis Webinar:  THE IMPACT OF THE ISRAELI ELECTIONS ON CIVIL SOCIETY AND SOCIAL CHANGE Are you interested in hearing about… the impact of the election on civil society in Israel changes and emerging trends in Israeli society the future for the third sector in Israel  Join us as two experts – Rabbi Michael Melchior and Don Futterman – share their insights on how the changing political map in Israel will impact the future for civil society and society as a whole in Israel. MONDAY January 28 2013 – 9pm Israel (GMT +2); 7pm UK (GMT) 2pm New York (EST) (more…)

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Jewish Farm School: Farmer

2013 Farm Season: February 15 – November 1 We are now accepting applications! The Jewish Farm School and Eden Village Camp are seeking a motivated, hardworking, and enthusiastic farmer for the 2013 season to oversee production of our2-acre educational farm and other growing areas on site at Eden Village Camp. Who You Are: Ideal candidates will: Have at least one full season working on a farm using sustainable agriculture techniques; Have experience working with chickens, goats, sheep and bees; Be comfortable teaching and demonstrating agricultural practices; Be excited about working with a diverse range of growing techniques and settings (ie annual vegetables, perennial orchard, permaculture, animals husbandry, educational gardens); Be enthusiastic about working collaboratively with other staff, program participants, and volunteers; Be an inspiring leader and creative problem solver.  Your Responsibilities: Conducting daily work on the farm; Directing farm apprentices, campers, staff, and volunteers in meaningful, educational, engaging, and productive farm projects; Overseeing educational gardens on the farm and other gardens on the site (ie, Director’s House Garden and 10 cabin snack gardens) Maintaining the Pardes Brachot Orchard; Maintaining all livestock and developing further plans for animal care; Maintaining site-wide composting system; Maintaining appropriate care of all farm related tools, machinery, […]

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Jewish Farm School: Farm Educator Apprenticeship

About this Position This is a six-month, paid apprenticeship for young adults seeking hands-on experience growing food, gaining practical skills, and developing as a Jewish farm educator. Live at Eden Village Camp, one hour north of New York City, April 14 through October 18, 2013 Learn more about Eden Village Camp. Learn more about the Farm at Eden Village. More questions? Explore the FAQ page. Who You Are: Extensive experience is not necessary. Farming and education is a continuous learning process, but experimental curiosity is required. Our FAQ page has a list of preferred interests. How You Will Grow: If you build it you can do it at Eden Village Camp. Together, we offer a plethora of opportunities to develop yourself. All that is required is active participation and a desire to know.   Jewish Educator Pedagogy Sustainable Agriculture Training DIY & Practical Skill-Building Jewish Community Living Seminars and Networking Learn about each of these on the FAQ page. Benefits Apprentices receive full room and board for the duration of the program, as well as a stipend of $2,000.  Apprentices working less than a full season will receive a prorated stipend. Submit Your Application Apply today to grow your own. […]

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Database Manager at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center

This is a full-time position overseeing all technical aspects of a sophisticated online database that serves non-profit registration, fundraising, and marketing needs. The Database Manager will also provide support to the Registration Department. Position is supervised by the Director of Marketing & Communications. Responsibilities include but are not limited to: Oversee all technical aspects of database, including entering and cleaning up data, creating forms, and pulling reports Maintain primary contact with database customer support Provide support and train staff in how to use database Assist guests with their reservations using the online registration database Answer registration phone line and field general and program-specific questions (e.g. program content, transportation, kashrut, etc.) Qualifications include: Experience working with online databases to manage and interpret data and create and run reports Excellent computer skills and ability to learn new programs Personable, friendly, and organized Ability to communicate information efficiently and clearly to guests and staff Ability to handle and organize a lot of information at once while paying attention to details Enthusiasm for working in a fast-paced, flexible cooperative team setting Resourceful and entrepreneurial, with good judgment and strong problem-solving skills Ability to work flexible hours, including some evenings and weekends Annual salary includes […]

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