Orthodox Employment, Conservative Mikvaot, Egalitarian Minyanim
Miami, FL (May 22, 2009) – In keeping with Targum Shlishi’s approach to funding a range of projects across denominations and affiliations within the Jewish world, recent initiatives include funding a series of webinars for job seekers through the Orthodox Union, supporting the publication of a book on the mikveh, and donating to the establishment of an online resource guide for egalitarian minyanim. Each project is discussed in more detail below.
“These three initiatives are just a few of the projects we’ve funded over the past year, but their range highlights the broad nature of our interests,” explains Aryeh Rubin, director of Targum Shlishi. “We evaluate projects we are considering funding based on their ability to affect the Jewish world for the better – we don’t take the affiliation into account in terms of a project’s merit.”
Orthodox Union, OU Job Board Employment Program Webinars
Targum Shlishi helped support two Webinars, or web-based seminars, in Fall 2008 and Winter 2009 that provided training and guidance to unemployed and financially stressed people throughout North America and beyond. The two Webinars were: The Credit Meltdown – Practical Solutions (September 22, 2008) and Starting a Business in Today’s Economy: What YOU Need to Know! (February 10, 2009). The OU Job Board brings employment services and support to jobless people in the Jewish community including job listings, guidance, and social services. The Webinars, presented by noted experts, allow people to receive information and training from the privacy of their homes and, because they are archived online, they can be viewed for months after their initial posting. The need for online employment resources is evidenced by the growing number of visitors to OU Job Board’s website, which increased from 60,000 visitors per month in September 2008 to 130,000 per month in March 2009. The OU Job Board will continue to offer additional Webinars along with its other programs designed to creatively bring support and employment to Jewish people experiencing financial difficulties. For more information go to www.ou.org/jobs.
Taking the Plunge: A Practical and Spiritual Guide to the Mikveh by Rabbi Miriam C. Berkowitz (Schechter Books, 2007)
Targum Shlishi is helping to support the second English edition of Taking the Plunge, to be published in 2009, as well as the book’s translation into Hebrew, which is expected to be published in 2010. Taking the Plunge explains the how-to of mikveh from a Conservative perspective, although the book is used by people across the religious spectrum. Topics covered include the preparations, what to do and say, a historic perspective, and discussion of the traditional reasons and benefits of mikveh along with creative new lifecycle uses for celebration and for healing that have developed from the resurgence of interest in the mikveh in recent decades in the U.S. and, lately, growing interest in Israel.
Mechon Hadar, Minyan Resource Guide
Many young Jews in the United States are searching for ways to become more connected to their faith through prayer, study, and social action, yet they remain disconnected from traditional Jewish institutions. Targum Shlishi supported Mechon Hadar’s efforts to help close this gap through the development of an online resource guide. The resource guide is designed to assist Jews in their twenties and thirties who are seeking spiritual expression through new, independent minyanim. The Minyan Resource Guide is a starter kit for grassroots, egalitarian prayer communities across the U.S. The guide provides information on subjects such as how to run complicated services and how to think strategically about issues such as membership, children, and hospitality. For more information, go to www.mechonhadar.org.
About Targum Shlishi
Targum Shlishi, a Raquel and Aryeh Rubin Foundation, is dedicated to providing a range of creative solutions to problems facing Jewry today. Premised on the conviction that dynamic change and adaptation have historically been crucial to a vibrant and relevant Judaism and to the survival of its people, Targum Shlishi’s initiatives are designed to stimulate the development of new ideas and innovative strategies that will enable Jewish life, its culture, and its traditions to continue to flourish. For more information on the foundation, visit its website.
Contact: Targum Shlishi