Sunday, August 18
Welcome to a new publication from the Birmingham Jewish Federation! BJFive will come to you every other week -- featuring five highlight stories, and announcements of major community events. We hope you like it.
“Luria has moved to the forefront of the fight against anti-Semitism.”
B'ham's Luria: "Next Great Jewish Hope?"
Birmingham native Elaine Luria is a new Member of Congress from Virginia. A former Navy ship commander, she is capturing headlines for her leadership. 

Tablet, an online Jewish magazine, profiled her recently in a piece headlined, “ Is Elaine Luria the Democratic Party’s Next Great Jewish Hope?”

“I n the current moment of anxiety and uncertainty for American Jews, and in the absence of a strong, national Jewish figure willing or capable to lead the effort, Luria — who didn’t highlight her Jewishness during her campaign — has moved to the forefront of the fight against anti-Semitism within her party and the larger political sphere.”

“If anyone seeks to understand the real meaning of Israel, here it is."
"Red Sea Resort" Reflects Israel's Essence
A new Netflix film, “The Red Sea Diving Resort,” recounts a remarkable saga. In the early 1980s, agents from Israel’s Mossad (national intelligence agency) ran a fake resort in Sudan as a cover to transport endangered Ethiopian Jews to Israel. This effort would help lead to large scale Ethiopian immigration later, aided by dollars raised by the Birmingham Jewish Federation and other Jewish Federations.

Though the film got mixed reviews, its core message — as framed by American Jewish Committee CEO David Harris — should not be lost. “What comes through loud and clear is the lengths to which Israel went, and the risks it took, to save Jews,” Harris writes.

“If anyone seeks to understand the real meaning of Israel, here it is,” added Harris. “Unlike the Holocaust, when there was no Israel, no Mossad, and no IDF (Israeli army) to come to the aid of trapped Jews, there was an Israel, a Mossad, and an Israeli IDF for thousands of Ethiopian Jews.”

Volunteers are still needed for this great event! Sign up here
Jewish Food, Culture and a Wonderful Day: Sunday, September 8th
Share in Jewish food, culture and tradition at the Friedman Family Foundation Jewish Food and Culture Fest on Sunday, September 8 at the Levite Jewish Community Center. The event, which is free and open to the public, will feature authentic Jewish foods, live local entertainment, a kid’s zone, and a Jewish cultural experience. There will be something for all ages, so bring the whole family for this unique festival.
 
The "When Pigs Fly Kosher BBQ Cook-Off" is a one of a kind BBQ event, which will feature competitive teams from across Birmingham and the Southeast. Teams will show off their talents and go head to head in categories including beef brisket, chicken, and baked beans. Judges will also award prizes for booth décor and most creative team name.
 
This highly anticipated annual event is made possible by local volunteers and sponsors. To volunteer for the Jewish Food and Culture Fest, visit our website .

Israel is home to more startups than the entire European Union and is second only to Silicon Valley in terms of the volume of startups it produces.
US & Israel: For the "BIRDS"
The Birmingham Business Alliance, Conexx: America Israel Business Connector, the Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation and Alabama Power Co. are hosting “Opportunities for Technology Partnerships Between Alabama and Israeli Businesses” with U.S. Sen. Doug Jones as keynote speaker. 

The event will be 12:30 to 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, August 20, at the Alabama Power Co. Auditorium, 600 18th Street North, Birmingham. It will include an overview of Israel’s technology ecosystem and the BIRD Foundation, and a panel of business leaders speaking on doing business in Israel.

Israel is home to more startups than the entire European Union and is second only to Silicon Valley in terms of the volume of startups it produces. There will be individuals on hand to facilitate a relationship between Israel and Alabama companies.

Conexx receives funding from the Birmingham Jewish Federation Campaign through the BJF’s Israel-World Jewry Bureau.

The event is free but does require registration.

Ella Duvdevani and Kenyan lacrosse team member
B'ham to Israel to Kenya: A Lacrosse Friendship
There was a wonderful story published on multiple websites featuring a great gesture of friendship between Israeli and Kenyan lacrosse teams. It's a feel good story that, as Southern Jewish Life magazine highlights in the below story, was engineered by Birmingham's Michael Duvdevani, who grew up in Israel. Treat yourself and read it.

Upcoming Community Events

Birmingham Holocaust Education Center's L'Chaim
Sunday, August 18 from 2:30-4 pm, at the Alys Stephens Center. Join the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center at this event honoring Holocaust survivors from generation to generation. Learn more

CJFS Cyber-Seniors
Thursday, August 22 and Friday, August 23 from 10 am to noon, at the LJCC. Learn to work on a smartphone, tablet or laptop in a one-on-one setting with UAB honors students. There is no charge but registration is required and limited. Participants can sign up for one or both days. Contact Jennifer Nemet to register.

"Get to know the Rabbis"
Sunday, August 25, 2:00-3:00 pm, in the LJCC Hess Library. You've heard their sermons but do you know them? Please join Rabbi Moshe Rube of Knesseth Israel, Rabbi Stephen Slater of Temple Beth-El, and Rabbi Adam Wright of Temple Emanu-El for a special discussion where they will talk about their lives, what they love to do, and how they have come to be with us in Birmingham. Learn more