Grants boost for Sydney Jewish organisations

From left: Jewish House board member Ron Hirsch, Rabbi Mendel Kastel and Gabrielle Upton in 2016.

THE Jewish community has received a $130,000 Chanukah present from the NSW government, with six organisations – predominantly in the Vaucluse electorate – successfully being awarded funding in this year’s round of the Community Building Partnership program.

Emanuel Synagogue received $30,000 for its communal garden, CEO Suzanna Helia expressing gratitude for the government’s “generous support”.

“Visitors will have already seen the splendid new forecourt, gates and garden which this grant has been directed towards and with the support of our wonderful community this has provided a beautiful oasis,” she said.

Jewish House benefited with $20,000 for landscaping and painting under the Vaucluse allocations and a further $9490 for capital equipment purchase under the Coogee electorate funding.

CEO Rabbi Mendel Kastel said, “We’re hugely grateful to both [Coogee MP] Bruce Notley-Smith and [Vaucluse MP] Gabrielle Upton for their support and for their keen friendship and interest in what we do.”

Our Big Kitchen (OBK) will be able to upgrade its office and volunteer area thanks to a $20,000 grant.

“We are delighted with the ongoing support we have been receiving from the government,” founder Rabbi Dr Dovid Slavin said.

“This grant will be used to transform a vacant landing area into over 20 square metres of much needed usable space.”

Bnei Akiva Sydney shlichim Royi and Aimee Bercovici said they “were thrilled” the organisation received $20,000.

“This will allow us to finally build a paved pathway and accessible gate as well as renovate our kitchen facilities,” they said.

“Receiving this grant means we can include all youth in our activities and allow for more inclusiveness.”

COA Sydney CEO Rachel Tanny said the organisation was delighted to have received $10,000 in funding to renovate the centre’s Kosher Meals on Wheels office.

“Because we heavily subsidise meals for recipients we have not had the ability to do these upgrades until now. We are especially grateful to Gabrielle Upton who has been incredibly supportive of COA Sydney,” she said.

Upton told The AJN, “I was very pleased to support several Jewish communal groups through my community building partnership grants this year. This strong level of funding recognises their enduring work in providing fellowship, leadership, education and day to day services in my local community and beyond.”

The final grant of $21,134, distributed under the Sydney electorate, will aid the NSW Jewish War Memorial in upgrading its toilet facilities with disability access and a shower.

“This will have important social and recreational benefits for our local community,” administrator Lynn Crown said.

NSW Jewish Board of Deputies president Lesli Berger thanked Upton, Notley-Smith and Sydney MP Alex Greenwich for acknowledging the needs of the organisations.

“Their support is greatly appreciated,” he said.