The SAJBD: always open for business

  • AboveBoardShaunZagnoev (3)
The work of the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) naturally slows down over the December break, but it never stops altogether. There are always issues that arise that have to be dealt with there and then. These can range from renewed upsurges of violence in the Middle East, incidents of anti-Semitism, and even natural disasters (the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami involved extensive activity on behalf of South Africans caught up in the tragedy).
by SHAUN ZAGNOEV | Jan 16, 2020

Less dramatic but still important are the cases in which communal organisations or even individual community members require our assistance. Over the past month, the board was involved in addressing problems that arose with one of our end-of-year youth camps so as to ensure that its activities could continue as normal, and in the repatriation of the body of a community member who sadly passed away while overseas. Neither of these issues were at all straightforward, but fortunately, working through the relevant official structures with which we have established effective relationships over the years, we were able to resolve them. Whatever the matter at hand, our community can feel assured that we will always strive to be there for them 24/7, 365 days a year.

Class of 2019: well done and best of luck

Over the decades, Jewish matric candidates have consistently recorded outstanding results, and this time round was no exception. I’m pleased to once more be able to congratulate our young students, and wish them all success as they embark on the next exciting phase of their life’s journey. Such success isn’t achieved without considerable hard work and dedication, not only on the part of the students themselves but from the broader team of educationalists, lay leaders, caring parents, and generous benefactors who together ensure the continued vigour and viability of our outstanding Jewish school system. It’s these institutions that have over the decades consistently produced young people who are both Jewishly literate and superbly prepared for the next stage of their career as independent young adults, whether going on to further education and training or carving out their own particular niches in the greater workplace.

When young Jews leave their parents’ homes, maintaining their Jewish affiliation becomes a matter of personal choice. Regardless of what path you have chosen, we urge that you also maintain your connections with the Jewish community, and indeed hope to see you becoming progressively more involved in Jewish communal affairs in years to come. For those who are going on to university, an excellent start would be to sign up with the South African Union of Jewish Students (SAUJS). Like the SAJBD itself, SAUJS provides a broad tent within which all Jewish students can find a place. I encourage you all to get involved and take full advantage of the wide range of social, educational, religious, and outreach activities that it offers.

  • Listen to Charisse Zeifert on Jewish Board Talk, 101.9 ChaiFM, every Friday from 12:00 to 13:00.

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