January 2018
“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day.” 
―  Edith Lovejoy Pierce
NCJW Upcoming Events and Information 
Normally, I start each monthly newsletter with thoughts about the month that just passed or information about the month to come. Instead, in honor of the new year, I want to open the newsletter with this wonderful quote from author Neil Gaiman who so eloquently states my hopes and wishes for my family and for all of us.

“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something .

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” 
―  Neil Gaima n

Melissa Prober
Executive Director, NCJW Chicago North Shore
Take 5 With Rae Luskin
1. When did you join NCJW?

2) Why did you join?
Cindy Wolfson and I were watching our daughters play softball and she asked me if I would help her with the Silent Witness Initiative.

3) What makes NJCW special/unique/worth supporting?
What makes NJCW special/unique/worth supporting? They truly represent Jewish progressive women's values. They have always strived to improve the lives of women and families. They offer opportunities for women of all ages to make a difference.

4) What is your favorite NCJW memory?
What is your favorite NCJW memory? There are so many but the first one that stands out Marching in Washington with the Silent witnesses, when we laid them down it looked like a cemetery and it was very powerful visual message to end domestic violence. What I loved was flying my daughter to DC for the million mom march creating a memory that has instilled a sense of service and community that she is passing down to her daughter. We will be marching together on January 20th.

5) What would you like your NCJW “legacy” to be?
What would you like your NCJW “legacy” to be? To see a world where women are free from violence and oppression. They have autonomy over their bodies and health. They have access to quality education and have parity in the workplace. They are free to choose whom they want to marry and when. It is a world in which women are free to standup, speak out and be all they can be.

You can learn more about Rae on her website www.thewinningadventure.com

~Rae Luskin, NCJW CNS Past President

What is your NCJW Story?
Be featured in an upcoming issue of the Councillor? Email melissa@ncjwcns.org and share your NCJW story. 

Rae is not only an advocate and mentor but she is passionate about making a difference in our world. Check out her article on 20 Ways to Stand Up to Hate.
Thank you for your support!  

We were again amazed by the continuing generosity of our NCJW members and supporters. You are passionate advocates who understand the threats to our progressive values and are ready and willing to stand up and make your voice heard!

Our $100+ donors received one of 100 symbolic hanger charms created by an artist with The Hanger Project, representing the desperate acts women take when they don't have access to safe abortion care. If you received one, please send us a photo of you wearing your charm for us to share!
If you weren't able to make your donation in 2017, you can get a head start on 2018 by donating today. Each supporter who donates $100 or more will receive a hanger charm.

Or consider a larger amount and become an NCJW major donor. Major donor levels include: Supporters ($500), Advocates ($750), Pioneers ($1200), Visionaries ($1800). We hope to see all our major donors at our exclusive major donor event in the spring.

No woman should EVER have to resort to an unsafe remedy in place of quality healthcare. Please support NCJW as we continue to fight for social justice and improve the quality of life for women, children, and families and by safeguarding individual rights and freedoms. 
NCJW CNS Programs
We have some great programs to add to your calendars. Please save-the-date(s) for the programs listed below and scroll down for further details.

January 3: Book club
January 10: Women's Salon
January 16: Equal Means Equal Screening and Discussion
January 20: Women's 2018 March to the Polls
January 21: I am Jane Doe Film Screening and Discussion
January 31: NCJW Section Board meeting

February 7: Book Club - Jumping Over Shadows by Annette Gendler
February 13: Women's Salon
March 7: Book Club - Swing Time by Zadie Smith
March 14: Women's Salon

If you have a specific passion that you'd like to share with us or are interested in helping plan a program, email melissa@ncjwcns.org. We would love to hear from you!
NCJW Book Club

It's not too late to participate in NCJW's Moderated Book Club.

Enjoy great books and be part of lively discussions.

Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of the month** at Congregation Solel, 1301 Clavey Road, Highland Park from 9:15 – 11:30 a.m. Refreshments are provided

Upcoming Discussions include:

January 3, 2018: The Handmaidens Tale by Margaret Atwood
February 7, 2018: Jumping Over Shadows by Annette Gendler
March 7, 2018: Swing Time by Zadie Smith
April 4, 2018: Kindred by Octavia Butler
May 2, 2018: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce

If you'd like to try book club without committing to the rest of the season, please come for a one-time tryout. For more information on attending, contact Marcia at mslevy600@gmail.com.

Click here to join Book Club or to register for a Book Club Try-Out.
Equal Means Equal Screening
Tues., January 16, 10:00 am
Location given upon RSVP
6:45pm; film begins promptly at 7.
Join NCJW for a private home screening of the documentary Equal Means Equal .

This film offers an unflinching look at how women are treated in the United States today. 

There is no cost to attend but advanced registration is required. Space is limited to 25 attendees.
Click here to register.

2018 Women's March Chicago
Sat., January 20, 10:00
Join NCJW Chicago North Shore at the 2018 Women’s March Chicago. We plan to meet at Crown Fountain (Northeast corner of Michigan and Monroe) in Millenium Park for a brief Shabbat service prior to the event. Then we will walk together to Grant Park to participate with hundreds of thousands working to CONNECT, PROTECT, and ACTIVATE for women’s rights, civil liberties, and diverse issues.

Click here to let us know you will be joining us.
I am Jane Doe Screening
Sun., January 21, 2:00 pm
Northbrook Library, 1201 Cedar Ln
Join us for a movie screening and panel discussion including Yvonne Ambrose, mother of a Chicago teen murdered by her purchaser after he bought her on Backpage.com. The movie is an eye-opening documentary about sex trafficking in our community and how it is hurting our young women. The discussion following the movie will be moderated by Professor Carina H. Santa Maria, MSW, LCSW of Dominican University and also includes Yvonne’s attorney, Gina Arquilla Deboni & Marian Hatcher, Cook County Sheriff’s Office.

Click here to reserve your spot

NCJW CNS Board Meeting
Wed., January 31, 10:00 am
Chicago location given upon RSVP
Join the NCJW CNS Section Board at one of our bi-monthly board meetings. Get involved and learn more about our section. Each board meeting will focus on a different topic. Board meetings are open to all NCJW Chicago North Shore members. Email info@ncjwcns.org for location.

NCJW National Visitor Brunch
Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Join us for an informative visit with Jody Rabhan
Director of NCJW Washington Operations. Jody will give us an update on the issues we are most passionate about, an overview of NCJW's activities in DC, and steps we can take as part of our grassroots effort to protect the rights of women, children and families. Visit our website for more information as it become available.
NCJW Member News and Tributes
We Need Your News!

Whether you are celebrating a simcha or sharing your sorrow, your NCJW friends want to know!

Keep NCJW informed of your life events: weddings, babys, graduations, b'nai mitzvahs as well as illnesses and grief. We are here to share with you....

Email  info@ncjwcns.org.

New Members
* Stacey Landsman
* Susan Agate
* Katherine Wier
* Nina Mizrahi
* Ellen Hall

Mazel Tov!
* To Gerry and Steve Keen on their 50th Wedding Anniversary!

Special Thanks
* To Ellen Hall for taking over the position of NCJW CNS Treasurer! We know you will be amazing and we are so excited to welcome you to the board of directors!
* To Elyce and Scott Goldstein who for the last 5 years have donated lovely scarves and gloves for the children at Tri-Con Child Care Center to give as gifts to their parents and grandparents. The children enjoy selecting just the right combination of scarf and gloves for the special lady in their lives. They excitedly wrap the gifts and make cards, too. NCJW is so thankful to the Goldsteins for allowing us to share this mitzvah with them.

For A Blessing
We mourn the loss of former section member Joy Malkus
We mourn the loss of former section member Blanche Keno

May their memories be for a blessing.
An NCJW Chicago North Shore Tribute is a thoughtful way to acknowledge a life event while supporting NCJW’s many valuable projects. You may purchase an individual tribute or packages of tribute cards.

To purchase Tributes visit

To: Donna Fishman
In memory of her mother Shirley Richter
From: Susan Kaplan

To: Zachary Baron
In memory of Thomas N Kay, your beloved Uncle
From: Susan Kay

Silent Witness Stories

The Silent Witness Exhibit of Illinois honors those who have died from acts of intimate partner violence. The Exhibit consists of life-size female figures, each bearing a shield telling the true story of an Illinois woman killed as a result of domestic violence. The figures provide a powerful visual impact to raise awareness of the tragedy and loss we all suffer when lives are taken senselessly through domestic violence. Groups may use the Exhibit for outreach, education and fundraising programs.

The Silent Witness Exhibit has been viewed in Illinois by thousands of people in dozens of venues since it was launched in 1997 by the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) Chicago North Shore Section. The Silent Witness Exhibit of Illinois is part of the National Silent Witness Initiative, started in 1990 in Minneapolis. 

Click here  for more information about hosting the Silent Witness Exhibit.

Each Month in the NCJW E-News, we will highlight a Silent Witness Story, so that the victims of domestic violence will never be forgotten.

Martha Worley
Age 39
July 26, 2013

Martha lived with her two teenage sons, aged 15 and 12, and her second husband Kurtis, age 33. She had told Kurtis she wanted a divorce which upset him. While she was sleeping he attacked her with a kitchen knife. Her sons heard her screams and tried to enter the locked bedroom. When Kurtis finally opened the door, he stabbed the older son in the throat. He survived the attack. Kurtis was charged with 10 felony counts of first-degree murder, domestic battery and armed violence. He was sentenced to 52 years in prison.
NCJW 2018 Leadership Retreat
We can’t wait to see you on June 1, 2018. Our leaders are some of the most resourceful, smart, dedicated and knowledgeable people across the country and Leadership Retreat gives us a chance to learn from each other and experts in the field, and gather skills to continue to fight the good fight.

When is Leadership Retreat?
June 1-3, 2018. The retreat kicks off on Friday at 2:00pm central time, and wraps up at 1:30pm central time on Sunday.

Where is it?
St. Louis, Missouri! Specifically, at the Sheraton Westport Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, 600 West Port Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63146.

What is the goal of Leadership Retreat?
To provide NCJW leaders with knowledge, skills, resources and connections to the NCJW network so they are better able to deliver on the mission of NCJW locally and nationally.

What should I expect from Leadership Retreat?
As a result of attending, you will:

  • Build leadership skills to support your role as Section President, Board Member, Committee Chair, Advocacy Leader or NCJW advocate or volunteer
  • Gain the knowledge and skills you need to build and maintain a strong section or action team.
  • Learn from and build connections with other NCJW leaders from around the country.
  • Feel empowered as a leader of complex social justice work.
  • Connect with the Jewish values that guide our work.
  • Build relationships and have fun!

Email Melissa at melissa@ncjwcns.org for more information.
If you haven't stopped by Encore lately,
you don't know what you are missing! 
New Encore Winter Hours!

So that Encore can provide the best possible service to its donors and customers, it has reduced its hours during the winter season. Encore's is currently closed on Sundays and Mondays and weekday mornings and open for donations and shopping as follows:

Tuesday: noon to 5:00 pm
Wednesday: noon to 5:00 pm
Thursday: noon to 5:00 pm
Friday: noon to 5:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Donate your Silver-Plate
Are you tired of looking at all that tarnish. Hate polishing your gravy bowl? Encore & More has a wonderful buyer for silver plated items and the proceeds go to NCJW! Just bring your items to Encore during business hours!

Encore's Online Store: Sometimes you just don't want to leave the house. We get it. In addition to the amazing items featured at Encore & More, some select items are also being offered for purchase online. Visit  http://stores.ebay.com/encoremore and see what treasures they have to offer!

Encore & More is NCJW's major fundraiser, supported by members and friends through donations of gently used men's, women's and children's clothing and accessories, jewelry, bric-a-brac, collectibles and small furniture.  

Donations are accepted during Encore's business hours. Deliver to the door at the rear parking lot off 11th St. Or, call for pickup at 847.853.8888. Please note that if you are dropping off a donation or picking up materials at Encore, you may park in the back against the building provided your car flashers are activated. If you park without activating your flashers - you may be ticketed.
Courts Matter:
  • Great news! Thanks in large part to your amazing advocacy, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) & the White House announced that the nominations of Brett Talley and Jeff Mateer would not proceed. Talley and Mateer are the first of President Trump’s judicial nominees to fail. Your calls, emails, petitions, press conferences, rallies, social media advocacy, and beyond have truly paid off!
  • If you haven't yet, please click here to watch video of Matthew Petersen, a nominee for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, getting quizzed by Sen. John Neely Kennedy (R-LA) on basic aspects of trial procedure during his Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. It quickly becomes clear that Petersen is unqualified to be on our courts. 
  • The Committee is expected to hold a hearing on the nominations of Kurt D. Engelhardt of Louisiana (5th Circuit Court of Appeals), Howard Nielson, Jr. (District Court for Utah),Barry Ashe (District Court for Eastern District of Louisiana), and others on January 10th.
  • Please call your senators about these troubling nominees, and urge your coalitions, networks, and friends to do the same. Your senators need to hear from you as soon as possible! Call the Senate switchboard at (202) 224-3121 or find your senators’ numbers here.

HIAS Chicago Closing
JCFS and HIAS Chicago have issued the following statement:
Jewish Child & Family Services and HIAS Chicago regret to announce that due to an extreme reduction in the number of refugees authorized to resettle in the United States in 2017-18, our refugee resettlement program is being ended by the U.S. Department of State. We are proud that, in partnership with our caring community, we have successfully resettled thousands of refugees over decades of effort. Together, staff and volunteers have welcomed individuals from the Former Soviet Union, Bosnia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq and Syria. We have ensured that each had safe, furnished homes, connected them to employment and education for their children and set them on a path towards integration. The strength of our combined efforts was recently recognized during a successful State Department monitoring visit in November.

The decision to discontinue resettlement efforts was not ours. The State Department is in the process of closing and consolidating programs across the country. The administration established an unprecedented cap of 45,000 refugees, the lowest number set since Presidents have been authorized to determine limits in 1980. It is possible the actual number of arrivals will, in fact, be even lower. By comparison, over 50,000 refugees were resettled last year and nearly 85,000 the year before.  Significant decreases in arrivals mean fewer programs are needed to support resettlement. As saddened as we are to see our program end, we are deeply concerned about those individuals and families awaiting their turns to come to the United States. Those who have been waiting years or even decades will now need to wait even longer to find freedom.

Please know that HIAS Chicago’s immigration and citizenship work will continue as it has for over a century. We will continue to explore new ways of serving individuals and families who have already been resettled or immigrated. Our commitment to social justice and welcoming the stranger remain as strong as ever. Thank you for your support.

Diller Teen Tikkun Olam award
The Diller Teen Tikkun Olam award is available for teens prioritizing a positive impact on community. For the article describing the RFP (request for proposal) click here.
The direct award website is:  http://www.dillerteenawards.org  The 15 winning teens are awarded $36,000 to continue their change-making efforts and/or education.
Other Events and Items of Interest
Upcoming JCAST Chicago Programs

Sex Trafficking on the North Shore Workshop
Thursday, January 25 - 9AM-12PM
Learn more about sex trafficking and how you can combat it in a forum specific for the Evanston/ Skokie area. JCAST Chicago partners: Chicago Alliance Against Sex Trafficking (CAASE), Northshore YWCA, and Evanston LINKS. Register

Stopping Traffic: The Movement to End Sex Trafficking
Three Showings!
Oakton Community College, DesPlaines, Campus, Jan 30 - 12:30-2:30PM
Oakton Community College, Skokie, Campus, Jan 31 - 6:30-8:30PM
Vernon Hills Library, March 4, 2:00-4:30PM
See sex trafficking from a global perspective and hear how it is occurring in the Chicagoland area. Learn how you can be part of the solution. Discussion speakers to be announced.

Plus JCAST Chicago is planning: Passover programs: A Taste of Freedom, piloting new parenting programs: Lets Talk About Boys Sexuality, Consent, & the Internet Age on February 25th &a similar program for parenting girls on April 22nd & much more! Visit JCASTChicago.org for info.

NCJW South Cook Section Lunch and Learn
Tuesday, January 9, 2018, noon, Flossmoor IL
For a Potluck Lunch & Learn supporting the 45th anniversary of Roe v. Wade featuring Lindsay Morris, Associate Director of NCJW DC Operations will present on NCJW’S work on reproductive heath, rights and justice.
Email ellenkaplan@sbcglobal.net for more information.

Public Health Woke Program:  
Sanctuary Healthcare for All: Protecting the Rights of Immigrants and Marginalized People
Saturday February 3rd 2018 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
2229 S Halsted St., Chicago
Registration: $15
The Public Health Woke Coalition--of which Health and Medicine is a member--will host a regional conference on February 3rd, with the goal of providing the tools and networking opportunities for advancing the safety, protection, and sanctuary healthcare for marginalized groups of people within the healthcare setting. The conference will focus on both health and legal issues faced in caring for immigrant and marginalized groups.
Click here for more information.

Gun Violence Program
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2018, 7:00 pm
Muslim Community Center, 8601 N Menard Ave, Morton Grove
Solution-based discussions and motivational speakers to give hope for “next steps”. Speakers: Tamar Manasseh, founder of Mother’s Against Senseless Killings (MASK); Shamar Hemphill, Community Organizer at IMAN; and Pastor Daniel Ruen from Grace Lutheran Church in Skokie

DePaul University Distinguished Lecture Series
Distinguished Lecture Series:Changing the Culture to End Gender-Based Violence
Thursday, February 15th, 11:30 am
Lynn Rosenthal, a former White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, will talk about the history of the movement to end violence against women, the #MeToo trend, the role of the Violence Against Women Act, and the new policy and cultural issues that will carry this work into the future. You can learn more and register at:  https://familylawlectureseries.eventbrite.com.

Articles and Opinions
Support NCJW
Chicago North Shore has several new ways to support our section. As always, you can make a one time donation or purchase a tribute (links are below), but we now also have a lovely, hand-crafted necklace you can purchase for yourself or for a gift. Net proceeds from the sale of each  necklace   supports NCJW's mission.

You can also support NCJW as a Sustaining Advocate.  Complete and print this form  and mail it to our office, 5 Revere Drive, Suite 200, Northbrook, IL 60062 and your scheduled monthly donation will ensure the viability of Chicago North Shore for generations to come. Your support makes it possible for NCJW to create meaningful social change for women, children, and families in the US and Israel. Make a difference for women, children, and families by giving a generous gift to NCJW through a variety of options:

Put your dollars to work immediately by making a fast, secure online donation. Become a Major Donor by making a donation of $360 or more. 

Honor a family member, colleague, friend, or loved one by giving a gift to NCJW. A handwritten NCJW tribute card with a message of support, celebration, or sympathy will be sent to the honoree or the family of the person you wish to remember.

Canadian jewelry artist Hilary Druxman has handcrafted a beautifully designed necklace and has partnered with NCJW Chicago North Shore to bring her design to our members and supporters. Overlapping triangles come together to form a star, reflecting our belief in advocacy and action. Each necklace costs $44 ($40 + $4 sales tax) and can be shipped anywhere in the US. Net proceeds from the sale of each handcrafted sterling silver necklace support our mission.

NCJW is recognized as an organization described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code. Contributions to it are tax deductible to the full extent provided by the law. 

Create a Legacy!
Want to ensure NCJW's legacy for years to come? Are you a life member and want to extend your support in perpetuity? Have you thought out a bequest to NCJW?
Click here  for a sample form. It's that easy!

Already have a bequest to NCJW?  Please let us know that you put us in your will so we can acknowledge you!! Email  melissa@ncjwcns.org .

Support NCJW with your Purchases
Save Gas. Save Time. Raise Money! 
Through iGive, Amazon smile and others, you can raise money for NCJW while you shop online. Use the links below and select NCJW Chicago North Shore as your charity of choice.

Every time you shop at any of the 1,000+ online stores in the iGive network, a portion of the money you spend benefits NCJW Chicago North Shore Section. It's a free service, and you'll never pay more when you reach a store through iGive. In fact, smart shoppers will enjoy iGive's repository of coupons, free shipping deals, and sales. To get started, just create your free iGive account at igive.com.  
Start iGiving at:  www.iGive.com/NCJW

You shop. Amazon gives. AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support NCJW every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at  smile.amazon.com  and select National Council of Jewish Women Wilmette, you'll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to directly to NCJW.

You shop; you save; they give
Here is a simple way to make a difference -- each time you search the web (Goodsearch) or shop online (Goodshop), Goodsearch will make a donation to your favorite cause. Just visit Goodshop and select NCJW Chicago North Shore as your charity of choice.

If you have other fundraising ideas, contact us at  info@ncjwcns.org