Around the Town with Rene

Federation targets three focus goals

The Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County is continuing its strategic planning process. With the consulting help of Jewish Federations of North America, the project has gone through the data-gathering and analysis phases, as well as a final data review by the Federation board. The last phase of the project is final tactical recommendations to the board, in August. This will identify more specific actions, associated costs and timeframes.
According to Executive Director Mort House, “The board has arrived at three general areas of focus over the next 3–5 years … outreach to our younger adult population; outreach to Eastern Tarrant County Jewry; and enhanced Federation marketing and communications. This will in no way alter our current mission nor deemphasize the significant strengths in our traditional areas such as support for Israel, JFS and local Jewish education. Rather, these new priorities will demand a higher level of lay involvement and some additional funding for programming. But after a community survey, several focus groups and a board retreat, it is clear that we need to work more on these areas. Implementation will begin once the board approves final recommendations from our three area committees. We see a September implementation.”

Woody Allen film on tap for ‘Daytimers’

Next event for the “Daytimers” is the annual movie and ice cream social, at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 14, featuring the Woody Allen film “Whatever Works.”
The film is about an eccentric New Yorker played by Larry David who abandons his upper-class life to lead a more bohemian existence.
Boris Yelnikoff (David), a misanthropic chess teacher from Greenwich Village, finds a young woman (Evan Rachel Wood) from Mississippi lying on his doorstep. He takes her in for the night and eventually marries her, despite their 40-year age difference and their clashing cultural backgrounds. His philosophy on the matter is that life is short so he might as well enjoy himself. But when he meets her family, no two people seem to get along in the entanglements that follow.
The program includes all the popcorn and ice cream you can eat plus the film for only $5. Reservations are requested so there will be enough ice cream for all. No-fat, low-fat and sugar-free have already been ordered. For other special diet requests, please call Barbara Rubin.
For reservations, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Beth-El Congregation, 4900 Briarhaven Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109.
The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Beth-El Congregation with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Israel Scouts/Tzofim Friendship Caravan takes Fort Worth by storm

On Wednesday, June 30, as the month of June came to a hot and humid end, the Israel Scouts/Tzofim Friendship Caravan rolled into Cowtown for the first time in many years. The Caravan, sponsored by Friends of Israel Scouts, Inc., is sent to the United States each summer as informal ambassadors of the state of Israel bringing a sample of Israeli culture to America. This team of talented 16- and 17-year-old boy and girl scouts spends months during their 11th-grade year in high school preparing a multimedia program of videos, songs and dances which they perform from June through August in cities all over the United States. The 40 teens and their eight 20-something counselors divide into four teams and crisscross the country in a 12-passenger van towing a U-Haul trailer filled with their equipment and personal belongings.
Their day in Fort Worth began by spending a morning with the campers and staff at the JEA’s Camp Sholom. They brought a program with them from Israel to teach the campers a little bit about the Jewish state, Judaism and Zionism in an informal, fun environment. After enjoying a typical American hot dog lunch, the scouts bid farewell to the campers and spent a couple of hours at the Fort Worth Stockyards, where they experienced the cattle drive, seeing longhorns for the first time and ending their visit with a taste of Texas, Blue Bell ice cream cones.
Returning to Congregation Ahavath Sholom, they prepared for their 7 p.m. performance for the Fort Worth community. Over 100 people came out on a rainy evening to participate in the “Caravan experience.” The songs and dances reflected the diversity of cultures found in Israel. Videos included greetings from the mayor of Jerusalem and an invitation to visit the holy city, an introduction to the scouts’ families and a special tribute to Gilad Shalit, the kidnapped Israeli soldier who has been held by Hamas terrorists in Gaza for the past four years. The tribute also included a message from Shalit’s father, thanking us for not forgetting his son and for our support in attempting to gain Gilad’s release. Everyone that saw the performance left Zale Auditorium with a smile on his face and the anticipation of next year’s visit by the scouts. Special thanks go out to the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County for their funding of this wonderful cultural event.

CAS elects new board, officers

Congregation Ahavath Sholom is proud to announce the election of its new officers and board of directors. Officers include: Marvin Beleck, president; Dr. Murray Cohen, first vice president; Ebrahim Lavi, second vice president; Dr. Nancy Faigin, third vice president; Edwin Bond, treasurer; Naomi Rosenfield, secretary; Stuart Isgur, parliamentarian. Directors include: Irwin Blum, Suzanne Herman, David Saul, Rick Savitz, Jodi Berger, Elsie Blum, Harry Labovitz, Andres Zapata, Robert Dubinsky, Walter Listig, Debby Rice, Carol-Ann Schwartz, J.R. Faigin, Aaron Levy, Naomi Brand. Elections were held at the annual congregational meeting on June 13. Congratulations to the new board of directors.

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