Clothing Drive at KMS for Victims of Domestic Violence

Written by Editor on . Posted in Community News

On Jan. 28, community members in Silver Spring, Maryland, spent six hours at Kemp Mill Synagogue (KMS) sorting, loading, and transporting donations at a clothing drive to benefit CHANA, a Baltimore-based charity that provides clothing as well as a variety of services to victims of domestic abuse. The drive was co-sponsored by KMS, Young Israel Shomrai Emunah, and NCSY. Children, teens, and adults came out for this chesed opportunity, sorting and loading several hundred bags of clothing, linens, purses, coats, shoes, and stuffed animals. A fully-packed mid-size U-Haul and a minivan were needed to transport the clothing to Baltimore. Students came from Berman Hebrew Academy, Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School (CESJDS), Yeshiva of Greater Washington, and local public schools.

Police Reports Raise Questions: The Rabbi Krawatsky Case

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

Kol HaBirah consulted with rabbinic and legal experts before publishing this article. We established a Toelet (benefit) in making the public more aware of some of the details of a case that many have made judgments about with limited information. We do not take sides in this case as we believe there is still not enough information to do so. We do believe it is our duty to share relevant information in an objective manner to help inform public opinion.

The police reports we obtained redact the names of the minors; however the names of the parents and others are present. Based on the guidance we’ve been given, we refrain from using parent's names in these accounts and avoid graphic details as much as possible.

Let My People Stay: Jewish Community Stands With the Dreamers

Written by Jason Langsner on . Posted in Community News

Over 100 Jewish community leaders and activists from around the country staged a protest in the rotunda of the Russell Senate Office Building on Wednesday, Jan. 17. Bend the Arc Jewish Action — along with a coalition of 17 other organizations — led the sit-in, during which participants demanded that Congress pass the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act to protect young undocumented immigrants from deportation. The Capitol Police forcibly removed the protestors from the building and arrested 86 of them.

Interfaith Day of Service Focuses on Kids in Foster Care

Written by Felicia R. Black and Amy Matathias on . Posted in Community News

On Jan. 15, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, 100 people from two Rockville, Maryland, congregations — Tikvat Israel Congregation (TI) and Twinbrook Baptist Church — gathered at Tikvat Israel to assemble “Comfort Cases.” Comfort Cases is a Gaithersburg, Maryland, non-profit organization that provides backpacks or small duffel bags with new essential and comfort items for children and teens entering foster care.

A Year in Review: Israel Bonds New Leadership Division Continues to Grow

Written by Adam Herman on . Posted in Community News

Many of the Washingtonian families, individuals, foundations, pension funds, and institutions who purchased Israel bonds as a part of their investment portfolio before I joined Israel/Israel Bonds Washington as executive director for Development Corporation for Israel last year. After all, Israel Bonds have been around since 1951; and as the recent profile piece on Bruce Pascal highlighted in Kol HaBirah, his grandfather was the first person in our community to buy an Israel bond that year. From generation to generation, l’dor v’dor, the importance of investing in Israel continues beyond the Pascals.

In the Court of Public Opinion, There Are No Clear Winners

Written by Rachel Kohn on . Posted in Community News

Rabbi Shmuel Krawatsky – Rabbi K, as he is fondly called – was head of the lower boys division at Camp Shoresh in Adamstown, Maryland, until 2015. As the New York Jewish Week recently reported and Kol HaBirah has confirmed, allegations of sexual abuse from three children after the conclusion of the camp season resulted in an investigation by Child Protective Services (CPS). Two of the children participated in forensic interviews with CPS. Based on its investigation, the agency concluded both cases were “indicated” cases of sexual abuse of a child. Before Rabbi Krawatsky’s appeal of the ruling took place, a settlement brokered with CPS in February 2016 resulted in the cases being downgraded from “indicated” to “unsubstantiated” cases of abuse, but — significantly — not ruled out as cases of abuse.

Fairfax Woman’s Photo Helps Send Former SS Guard to Prison

Written by Suzanne Pollak on . Posted in Community News

Irene Fogel Weiss of Fairfax, Virginia, was a young girl when a train took her from a ghetto in Hungary to the Auschwitz concentration camp. As she stepped onto the platform, where she underwent a selection process that determined who would live and who would die, the Nazis snapped a photo, recording the moment for posterity.

With the Launch of Her App, Woman Fulfills Childhood Dream

Written by Malka Goldberg on . Posted in Community News

Sarah Hostyk’s Place Tempo helps people uncover  nearby sweet spots for working remotely and studying.

Walking around town in a life-sized phone costume is one of the many ways Sarah Hostyk, a native of Montgomery County, Maryland, has demonstrated her entrepreneurial zeal and dedication toward launching Place Tempo. A free app for Apple and Android, Place Tempo matches remote workers and students with the six best nearby places to telework or study, based on users’ selected criteria and real-time crowdsourced location ratings. Over the past few months, Hostyk walked to every major café and coffee shop in DC and in Silver Spring, Maryland, moving from table to table to pitch her app to customers.