Weekly update from the office

19th of Iyyar, 5776

Shabbat Shalom!

Even though summer is around the corner, there's still lots happening at the Jewish Federation of Arkansas and in our statewide Jewish community.  Please take a moment to check out all the activities below. 

All best wishes for a safe and meaningful

Memorial Day Weekend, as we remember with gratitude those who gave their lives in service of our country. 


Marianne Tettlebaum


PSIf you have news or information you'd like to submit, please e-mail us at federation@jewisharkansas.org.


At the JFAR Office

What's Happening: 
4 Highlights    

--Did you know? . . . This summer JFAR is helping to send 31 Jewish kids from Arkansas to Jewish camps throughout the US and Canada!  

JFAR is grateful to partner with Jewish Children's Regional Service and Congregation B'nai Israel (for Temple members), as well as with the camps themselves, to provide scholarships for kids from anywhere in Arkansas to attend Jewish camp. 


--JFAR also provides grant funding for Jewish-related projects and services that support our Mission.  For our 2016-17 Grant Application cycle we received 14 applications with a record $53,710.51 in requests.

Thanks to all who applied.  JFAR's Grant Committee carefully reviews all applications and evaluations. Recipients will be notified of award decisions at the beginning of July.  Click here for a list of our 2015-16 Arkansas Grant recipients


--Thank you to our 2015-16 UALR social work intern Kelsey Dugger, who recently completed her internship with us. 

Kelsey worked closely with our social worker Cindy Brown to do multiple weekly visits to Jewish community members and to assist with various community needs.  Thanks, too, to Jewish community member Mark Krain for helping advise Kelsey.  This summer we welcome a new social work intern:  Kelsey Lillard.  She can be reached at intern@jewisharkansas.org.  

--Does your congregation, Sisterhood, Men's Club, or other Jewish organization or group need a thoughtful and informative workshop for an upcoming meeting? 

Our social worker Cindy Brown can offer a workshop, free of charge, on everything from "Planning for Retirement: Finding Purpose Beyond Work," to "How to Deal with Difficult/Challenging People" to "Parenting Children with Developmental Delays" to "Being your Parent's Care Partner."  Check out the full list of workshops here.  Cindy has already offered many of these workshops around the state and is willing to travel to you. 


Around Arkansas

What's Happening: 
4 Highlights

--Mazel Tov to Congregation B'nai Israel (Little Rock) on celebrating its 150th Anniversary this year!  

The Congregation has hosted a variety of anniversary activities and programs, most recently a visit by Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism, as well as a gala celebration.   Click here to read an article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on the anniversary.


--After almost 150 years in existence, Temple Anshe Emeth in Pine Bluff is closing.

The final service and closing ceremony are Saturday, June 11, 2016 at 10:00am at the Chapel of First Presbyterian Church (717 W. 32nd Ave. in Pine Bluff).  If you're interested in attending, please contact the federation office.  Temple Meir Chayim in McGehee will close the following week. Contact our office for more information.    


--Want to learn more about Yiddish Literature and Culture?  Check out Rabbi/Dr. Jacob Adler's summer course at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville:

--Our Arkansas Jewish community averages 3-4 Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebrations per month.  Check out our online community calendar for more information.

Next up:  the Bar Mitzvah of Jacob Ellgass at Congregation Etz Chaim on June 4th.


Around the World

What's Happening: 
4 Highlights

--Firefighters Contain Blaze in Jerusalem

--ISIS in Syria and the Implications for Israel's Security Click here for a summary of the study by Hillel Frisch.  Click here for the complete study.

--The Transformation of Lag B'omer

--The Lost--And Found--Jews of Crete