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SA Organisations

Above Board

  • Jeff
Final preparations are underway for the Board's Gauteng Council conference taking place on Monday evening at the Sandton Shul hall. While attention will also be paid to some of the challenges faced by our community, including security and combating anti-Semitism, the theme of the conference will primarily be a celebratory one.
by JEFF KATZ | Aug 10, 2016

In 2016, South African Jewry marks the 175th anniversary of its formal birth as an organised Jewish community. Our Gauteng conference will in large part be devoted to looking back on what Jews have accomplished in this country, whether in the specifically Jewish or general spheres or whether as individuals or in the collective sense.

We are honoured to have Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, Chief Rabbi of the UK and the Commonwealth, as our guest speaker on this auspicious occasion. Rabbi Mirvis will also be speaking at the 175th anniversary celebration of the Gardens Shul in Cape Town, the Mother Congregation of SA Jewry.

It says much about how far our community has come since its modest beginnings that far from arriving as a stranger, Rabbi Mirvis is in fact returning to where he was born - Johannesburg - and where he grew up and was educated - Cape Town. 

We hope to see as many of our community as possible joining us for the occasion. 

* To book your place or for more information, contact Roseanne on (011) 645-2521 or sajbd@sajbd.org.

 

Window of opportunity in new political landscape

 

After so many months of negativity, bad news stories and general disillusionment over the direction our country appeared to be taking, last week's local government elections were a welcome demonstration of the essential robustness of democracy in South Africa.

The results have created a new fluidity in our politics, which hopefully will in turn generate a renewed sense of urgency and creativity on the part of the incoming leadership.

For our own part, we are extremely pleased with the success of our “Make Us Count” campaign which included voter registration drives, ‎pre-election debates and the heading up of the largest multi-faith and multi-ethnic observer team to assist the IEC on polling day.

As a community, however, our participation in South African politics needs to go beyond merely participating at election time. We need to be constantly interested and become more involved in the political affairs of our country, just as many members of our community were in the not too distant past.

In this way, we empower ourselves while also following in the footsteps of the many South African Jews who have contributed to our political culture over the generations.

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