Organizational Leaders Go South for Firsthand Look at Border Conditions

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

Members of the local Jewish community were among the 27 leaders from 17 national Jewish organizations who traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border Aug. 21-22 for a firsthand look at the conditions facing immigrants there. The delegation was led by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and HIAS. Originally founded to aid the resettlement of Jewish refugees in America over 100 years ago, HIAS presently works with refugee populations of different backgrounds from around the world.

Making Challahs for the Holiday

Written by Editor on . Posted in Community News

On Aug. 22, volunteers assembled at Adas Israel Congregation in DC to bake challahs for community members who need a little extra support throughout the High Holidays (people in mourning, ill, home-bound, juggling life with a new baby, and so on). Leah Hadad and Healey Sutton demonstrated different techniques for making the round shape traditional at this time of year. It is customary to eat round challahs during this period as a symbol of our desire for a year in which life and blessings continue without end. The group baked 30 challahs total.


In the Space Between Silence and Violence

Written by Rachel Kohn and Suzanne Pollak on . Posted in Community News

After all of the hand-wringing leading up to Aug. 12, an estimated 20 to 40 individuals ultimately emerged from the Foggy Bottom Metro station in Washington, D.C., to participate in Unite the Right 2, a rally marking the anniversary of last year’s white supremacist gathering in Charlottesville, Virginia. Last year’s rally drew hundreds of boisterous white nationalists, neo-Nazis, and other flavors of bigot and ended in the death of one protester. This year’s group was taken the 10 or so blocks to their authorized demonstration ground in Lafayette Park by a significant police presence and encircled by a human chain of police officers to separate them from counterprotestors.

Politicians and Faith Leaders Express Solidarity in Advance of Unite the Right Anniversary

Written by C.M. Ransome on . Posted in Community News

Last weekend marked the one-year anniversary of the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. On Aug. 11-12, 2017, various neo-Nazi, white nationalist, and neo-fascist groups descended upon the city to protest the removal of a Confederate statue and march in support of white supremacy in the United States. On the night of the 11th, around 200 men and women marched onto the University of Virginia campus yelling racist and anti-Semitic chants. Things turned deadly the following day when a white supremacist drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer.

A Refreshing Way to Support Chai Lifeline

Written by Editor on . Posted in Community News

On Aug. 19, the Chodoff family, with the help of Yehuda Dachman, held their second annual Lemonade Stand for Charity in the Kemp Mill neighborhood of Silver Spring, Maryland. The kids, who are participants in the Camp Ahava team of Chai Lifeline’s annual summer Chai-a-Thon, raised over $110. Chai-a-Thon is a special peer fundraising program benefitting Camp Simcha/Camp Simcha Special, the only kosher camp for sick kids and teens.


Sun Shines on MitzvahCycle 2018

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

On Sunday, Aug. 26, 75 cyclists raised a total of $35,000 in Bikur Cholim of Greater Washington’s annual MiztvahCycle bikeathon. Bikur Cholim of Greater Washington (BCGW) is a nonprofit, volunteer-based service organization that provides assistance to people and their families when facing medical challenges.

Announcement of Direct Flights From DC to Israel Represents a Triumph of Local Teamwork

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

On Aug. 2, United Airlines announced it will begin its 20th year of service to Israel with a new nonstop flight between its hub at Washington Dulles International Airport and Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport, subject to government approval. The new flight, starting May 22, 2019, will be the first to be operated by a U.S. carrier between the two cities.

‘Special in Uniform’ Does More Than Help Israelis with Disabilities Serve Their Country

Written by Susan Berger on . Posted in Community News

As part of an 11-day tour of 14 cities across the U.S., Col. (Res) Tiran Attia of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spoke with members of Congregation Beth Emeth in Herndon, Virginia, on Aug. 8 about Special in Uniform, an innovative program that gives young Israelis with disabilities the opportunity to serve in the IDF. This opportunity is especially important in Israel, where military service is a given in most social circles — both a national rite of passage and way of giving back to the country — and a shared experience many Israelis reference throughout their lives.