Miliband has a date with WIZO women

The Jewish Chronicle - - COMMUNITY LIFE -

THE WOMEN of WIZO.uk are hav­ing a good week: they have landed For­eign Sec­re­tary David Miliband as the guest speaker at their 90thanniver­sary din­ner next Fe­bru­ary.

Mr Miliband, whose de­ci­sion to pri­ori­tise meet­ing his newly adopted baby son over meet­ing Saudi Ara­bia’s King Ab­dul­lah earned him crit­i­cism in some sec­tions of the press, has pre­vi­ously de­clined speak­ing en­gage­ments with Jewish or­gan­i­sa­tions.

Com­mu­nity Life won­ders if Mrs Miliband se­nior might be a closet mem­ber of WIZO and ex­erted some in­flu­ence. Funds raised at the din­ner will go to three projects in Jerusalem, in­clud­ing a tran­sit home for chil­dren at high risk of abuse.

And while con­grat­u­lat­ing UK or­gan­i­sa­tions on se­cur­ing top speak­ers, plau­dits to the Kin­loss Learn­ing Cen­tre at North-West Lon­don’s thriv­ing Finch­ley Syn­a­gogue, for get­ting Holo­caust his­to­rian Dr Deb­o­rah Lip­stadt to de­liver the Lord Jakobovits Me­mo­rial Lec­ture as the cul­mi­na­tion of the cen­tre’s au­tumn pro­gramme.

And con­grat­u­la­tions to the or­gan­is­ers of Kisharon’s art auc­tion held last Thurs­day night at the MacDougalls auc­tion house, which raised more than £70,000, in­clud­ing £18,000 for a sin­gle piece by artist Mary Fed­den. Some 150 guests en­tered the bid­ding for the 48 lots, which in­cluded rare Ju­daica, a signed David Rub­inger im­age of para­troop­ers at the West­ern Wall in 1967 and a work spe­cially com­mis­sioned by Kisharon from David Breuer-Weil.

A good week, too, for the Zion­ist Fed­er­a­tion, which com­mem­o­rated the 90th an­niver­sary of one of the most sig­nif­i­cant events in Zion­ist his­tory — the Bal­four Dec­la­ra­tion, in which the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment “viewed with favour” the es­tab­lish­ment of a Jewish home­land in Pales­tine. Some 300 guests at­tended the event, held at the For­eign Of­fice, at which ZF chair­man Andrew Bal­combe wel­comed Lord Ja­cob Roth­schild, great-nephew of Lord Wal­ter Roth­schild who re­ceived the dec­la­ra­tion from then For­eign Sec­re­tary Arthur James Bal­four. His­to­rian Sir Martin Gil­bert was the main speaker.

An­other his­toric mo­ment will be marked to­mor­row night when mem­bers of AJEX at­tend a brief ser­vice at Plat­form 8 at Vic­to­ria Sta­tion, Lon­don, to mark the an­niver­sary of the ar­rival of the body of the Un­known War­rior on Novem­ber 10, 1920.

Con­grat­u­la­tions this week, too, to One to One, the Finch­ley-based char­ity, which has 50 trekkers rais­ing spon­sor­ship cash for dis­ad­van­taged young peo­ple in Is­rael, and also to the younger but equally char­i­ta­bly minded quar­tet who were the win­ners of the JC and JCD Chanu­cah card com­pe­ti­tion. The four, se­lected from a huge num­ber of en­tries from pupils at Jewish schools and via the JC, are Elisha Mann-Wineberg, six, from Sal­ford who is a pupil at King David School, Manch­ester; Michal Co­hen, 12, from Gold­ers Green, who at­tends Meno­rah High School; Julius Kochan, 10, from Crouch End; and Danielle Stan­ley, 11, from Bushey. The cards are avail­able in packs of 8 at £5 per pack (020 8446 8804; info@jcd.co.uk).

And a no­tional bot­tle of (kosher) Cham­pagne to FZY’s char­ity com­mit­tee which ran its X Fac­tor-style Starsearch on Sun­day at Lon­don’s Shaw Theatre where some 230 peo­ple saw Han­nah-Beth Les­lie sweep top prize. The event raised £2,500 for FZY’s Ethiopian Bar­mitz­vah Fund and Grief En­counter, which helps be­reaved chil­dren. Coin­ci­den­tally, Shelley Gil­bert, founder of Grief En­counter, was this week pre­sented with Jewish Care’s Min­erva Busi­ness Award, pre­sented at the an­nual fundrais­ing lun­cheon. More than 800 peo­ple at­tended, rais­ing a record £421,000 for Jewish Care. Poignantly, Ms Gil­bert’s award was pre­sented by Grief En­counter pa­tron Kevin Wells, fa­ther of mur­dered So­ham school­girl Holly Wells.

And on the sub­ject of awards, con- grat­u­la­tions to Vivi­enne Bel­los, leader of North-West Lon­don Re­form Syn­a­gogue’s Alyth Choral So­ci­ety, who has been awarded the 2007 Mak­ing Mu­sic/Lady Hi­lary Groves Prize for her con­tri­bu­tion to mu­sic. The award will be pre­sented on De­cem­ber 9, at a con­cert to mark ACS’s ju­bilee year.

Mile­stone an­niver­sary years are be­ing cel­e­brated at a trio of Lon­don’s United Syn­a­gogue con­gre­ga­tions this week. At Highams Park and Ching­ford Syn­a­gogue, which is 70 years old, the Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks at­tended a ser­vice and af­ter­noon tea at the East Lon­don shul on Sun­day. Mean­while Ruis­lip Syn­a­gogue con­cluded its 60th-an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions with an evening of en­ter­tain­ment and Wem­b­ley Syn­a­gogue closes its 80th an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions with guest Liver­pool MP Louise Ell­man later this month.

A re­ward­ing week for JNF UK which saw the pre­sen­ta­tion of the latest round of schol­ar­ships that al­low Is­raeli sol­diers from dis­ad­van­taged back­grounds to at­tend univer­sity. JNF UK chief ex­ec­u­tive Si­mon Win­ters joined top mil­i­tary brass at the pre­sen­ta­tion of seven schol­ar­ships bring­ing to 50 the num­ber of sol­diers able to con­tinue their ed­u­ca­tion since the scheme’s in­cep­tion in 2002.

And plau­dits to UJIA for ar­rang­ing Yeshivah and Sem fairs in Lon­don and Manch­ester, de­signed to help young UK Jews choose gap-year ed­u­ca­tional pro­grammes in Is­rael. Some 200 stu­dents at­tended the fairs, at Hen­don’s Has­monean High and Manch­ester’s King David High.

Elisha Mann-Wineberg’s Chanu­cah card is one of four win­ning de­signs in the JC and JCD com­pe­ti­tion. Elisha, six, is from Sal­ford, Manch­ester

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