April 16, 2021
4 Lyar 5781
Dear Friends:
Shabbat Shalom!

I hope you all are enjoying Spring as much as I am. The blooming flowers, the honey bees and best of all hearing about so many of the Jewish kids around town registering and getting excited for their summer camp experiences. While Nora is too young to send to sleep away camp this year, we have registered her for the entire summer at camp LJCC, minus the week she will spend at “Camp JCC” in Omaha when she goes for her first annual summer visit to Grammy and Poppy’s house. 

I have to admit I am very excited about camp at the LJCC this summer. I have participated in planning meetings with the LJCC’s interim director Aimee Johnson and this year’s camp director Katie Grace and I can tell you they have an amazing summer planned with lots of wonderful Jewish experiences in store! I have even volunteered to be a guest flag raiser and RUACH leader at least once a week. Any guitar players out there want to join me?

Last week, The Birmingham Jewish Community executed two amazing events. First, the Levite Jewish Community Center’s Yom Ha’ Atzmaut Tour of Israel with tour guide Julian Resnick and can be viewed by clicking here. This was in addition to the statewide Yom Ha Shoah program brought to us by the Birmingham Holocaust Educational Center. This moving tribute is available to view here. The Birmingham Jewish Federation is proud to partner with our local communal organizations to bring such dynamic, high-quality programs to you throughout the year. 

Last week I had the opportunity to join a program with Eric Fingerhut, President and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America. He spoke of local Federation’s successes over the past year.  He attributed them to being part of a collective through the Federation system.  There are 146 Federations in cities that are strong, poised and eager to help other Jews around the world when crises arise and when there’s cause to rejoice in and celebrate.   

It’s because of you, our donors, that we are able to bring such rich and dynamic experiences to the community. For a many years the Federation was looked at solely as a fundraising agency – but do you know all the programs the Federation executes for the community? In addition to the Jewish Community Relation’s Council, the BJF also funds and executes PJ Library, You Belong In Birmingham, a robust Women’s Philanthropy Program, Shalom Baby and Shalom Birmingham which provides welcome baskets to new babies and new arrivals to our community, and Young Jewish Philanthropy (in partnership with The Birmingham Jewish Foundation).   I’m excited to announce that we have recently reinvigorated our Israel programming by strengthening our relationship with our sister city Rosh Ha’ayin.  We’ll be providing monthly programs in partnership with the Jewish Federation of New Orleans and the Jewish Agency for Israel along with Rosh Ha’ayin. All of this in addition to supporting our local Jewish agencies here at home and internationally through the Israel World Jewry Bureau!

Many of you still have your pledge cards for our 2021 Annual Campaign which have not yet been mailed in. I humbly ask that you remain part of the “collective” and consider returning those so that we can build upon and expand this list of programming over the next year. For those of you who make gifts from a donor advised fund please consider making your commitment now as well. As always, I am available to speak to each and every one of you about the benefits the community and the world receive from your gift.

I’ll close with a favored quote from Maimonides –

“Give graciously, cheerfully and sympathetically.”

2021 Annual Campaign
See your Federation dollars at work!
Agency Spotlight
Yom Hashoah at NEMJDS
In honor of Yom Hashoah, the 4th through 8th grade students at N.E. Miles Jewish Day School participated in an educational Zoom call with Louise Abroms, whose parents were Holocaust survivors. We learned how her parents survived in those hard times. She told us a story about when her father sneaked out and got some food for the people in his ghetto. He almost got caught! Mrs. Abroms answered questions about the Holocaust and shared pictures of her parents.  She also explained how her parents met and how they came to America.  We appreciate Mrs. Abroms  telling us about her strong, brave, clever and very lucky parents. Thank you Mrs. Abroms!                                              
Rafa and Liberty (grade 5)     
Upcoming Programming
If you missed the virtual tour of Israel...
Watch the tour of Israel with Julian Resnick today!
Yemenite Culture in Conversation
Sunday, April 18 @ 11 AM
Join the city of Rosh Ha'ayin, Israel, for a fun and interactive celebration of Yemenite culture - with a special look at Yemenite history, food, and music/dance – on Sunday, April 18, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. CDT/7:00 p.m. Israeli time. (This event will be held in English.)

Attendees will get a special tour of Rosh Ha'ayin's famed Yemenite museum, from curator Yiska Rave. Chochi Araya will help participants explore the world of Yemenite dance, and Sharon Meydani (who has taught Yemenite recipes to two James Beard Award-winning chefs) will teach attendees how to make Yemenite breads. (Recipes will be provided to attendees.)

This event is jointly hosted by the Rosh Ha'ayin Partnership2Gether Steering Committee, the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, and the Birmingham Jewish Federation, in partnership with the Jewish Agency for Israel's Partnership2Gether program.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
The Morgan Project - Dismantling Systemic Racism through Education and Reconciliation
Wednesday, April 21, 2021 at Noon
Featuring Lisa McNair and Charles Morgan III

Lisa McNair and Charles Morgan III are board members of The Morgan Project, a grassroots organization, envisioned and created by members of Birmingham’s YMBC Civic Club, in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd in May, 2020. The Morgan Project seeks to provide meaningful actions and programs to help eradicate systemic racism through education. In addition to a speakers’ series, the Morgan Project is designing a state wide social justice and inclusion curriculum for students K-12. Included will be the reprinting and distribution of A Time To Speak, the seminal book written in 1964, by Charles (Chuck) Morgan, Jr. The Morgan Project is named for Chuck Morgan who spoke truth to power at great personal sacrifice. His willingness to stand up and speak up have inspired subsequent generations.
YBIB Black Warrior River Clean Up
Sunday, April 25 @ 9 AM
YBIB is doing a Black Warrior River clean-up morning April
25th from 9:00 am -11:00 am. We will meet at East Lake Park (8101 4th Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35206) and will have a bagel breakfast prior.
It is recommended you wear closed-toed shoes, long pants and long sleeves as well as sometimes there is a bunch of brush.
Book Talk: "The Ledger and The Chain" 
Thursday, April 29th @ 7-8PM
Join TBE community member and Chair of the University of Alabama History Department, Joshua Rothman, for a discussion of his new book, The Ledger and the Chain: How Domestic Slave Traders Shaped America

In his book, Dr. Rothman details the stories of three of the most prominent slave traders in American history. Focusing on the lives and careers of Isaac Franklin, John Armfield and Rice Ballard, Dr. Rothman documents the roles of these men in the evolution of the domestic slave trade, the shocking activities that their business entailed, and their significance for American society and the American economy before the Civil War. 

This virtual event will include time for audience Q & A. 

This series is part of the development of the Beth El Civil Rights Experience; a multimedia project exploring the intersections of Birmingham’s Jewish and Civil Rights histories, with an eye towards exploring the past and “building bridges” in the present and future. Learn more here.

This event is being held in partnership with Thank You Books and we encourage you to pre-order the book directly from this local bookseller in advance of the event! You can pre-order here.
Letter to the Future Me: An Ethical Will Seminar with Dr. Erica Brown
Thursday April 29th at 1PM
Please join National Women's Philanthropy and the Jewish Future Pledge as we explore the process of creating an ethical will. This interactive session will feature Dr. Erica Brown and will be hosted by LOJE25 Chair, Judy Altenberg.
Registration can be found here or click the image below!
The BHEC is Hiring
The Birmingham Holocaust Education Center (BHEC) is seeking an Executive Director. The Executive Director is a key management leader with overall operational responsibility for overseeing the strategic planning, programming, revenue development, and day-to-day administration of the organization. The ideal candidate will require experience in the following areas, including a strong track record in fundraising and resource development, marketing, and community outreach. The position reports directly to the Board of Directors.

To read more, you can visit their website here.

If interested, please send resume and cover letter to [email protected] or [email protected]
Community Programs
The Federation and Foundation have been having issues with our post office box. Please send all correspondence to our physical address at 3966 Montclair Road, Birmingham, AL 35213
The Birmingham Jewish Federation