Metro Briefs August 28

Metro Briefs August 28

B’nai Emunoh Chabad will again offer Gourmet Restaurant Night on Monday, Sept. 1 from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at 4315 Murray Ave. A full menu will be available for eat-in or takeout. Reservations must be made to secure seating. Selections will include meat, fish and chicken dinners along with appetizers and sides, all under the strict supervision of the Vaad Harabonim of Pittsburgh. Contact or call 412-521-1477 to make reservations.  

Christians and Jews for Israel will hold a Stand for Israel Rally in partnership with the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh on Sunday, Sept. 7, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Ford City Park, Ford City. Speakers will include Gregg Roman, director of the Jewish Federation’s Community Relations Council; David Ainsman, leader of AIPAC Pittsburgh; parents of IDF soldiers; an Israeli diplomat; and rabbis and pastors. A collection will be taken to go toward the Israeli Emergency Fund. Cards are also being collected on our behalf to be delivered to IDF soldiers. Visit or for more information.

The Zionist Organization of America, Pittsburgh District and Volunteers for Israel have teamed up to provide a glance into volunteering on an Israel

Defense Forces base alongside soldiers, base employees and other volunteers. Support Israel and its people by performing noncombat civilian support duties such as packing medical supplies, repairing machinery and equipment and maintaining the base.  

With more the 80,000 reservists called up for Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, there is an urgent need of volunteers to provide support to the IDF.  The ZOA and VFI invite to community to an information meeting on Monday, Sept. 8 at 7 p.m. in the Eisner Commons at Congregation Beth Shalom. Pittsburghers of all ages are invited to attend.

Call local VFI representative Jeanne Bair at 412-462-0546 or contact ZOA Executive Director Stuart Pavilack at to make reservations.

The Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh will hold its 119th annual meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 9 at 7 p.m. in Levinson Hall in the Irene Kaufmann Building, 5738 Forbes Ave., Squirrel Hill. The meeting will focus on the issue of gender violence and will give men an opportunity to sign the PA Says No More Pledge to End Gender Violence. The goal is to collect more than 500 signatures prior to and at the annual meeting to raise awareness and take a stand in the community.

“As part of our mission, the JCC strategically undertakes advocacy or education efforts on a broader scale consistent with our values that advances a larger community effort. It is a part of being a leadership organization in Pittsburgh,” said Brian Schreiber, JCC president and CEO. “Gender violence is a serious issue in American society, and the JCC is taking this message to the men on our board and professional staff, to the fathers and grandfathers of our early childhood and after-school students, to our male counselors and coaches and to the community at large.”

Kristy Trautmann, executive director of the FISA Foundation, will speak about transforming this perceived “woman’s issue” to one where men take the lead to combat gender violence.

A new JCC Camps video will be premiered at the meeting, and JCC’s annual volunteer awards will be presented along with the installation of officers.

Everyone in the community is welcome and encouraged to come and sign the pledge.

The Hillel Jewish University Center has announced the launch of the 2014 Family Ties program. Family Ties pairs Jewish students from Pittsburgh-area campuses with local families in the greater Pittsburgh community. Family Ties can work for all types of families, ranging from empty-nesters to families with young children. Sign up at by Wednesday, Sept. 10; spaces are limited. Contact David Katz at for more information.

Judith Robinson invites the community to a poetry reading on Thursday, Sept. 11 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Biddle’s Escape, 401 Biddle Ave. in Regent Square. Sharing the microphone with Robinson will be Pittsburgh poets Jennifer Jackson Berry, Randy Minnich, Bob Waliki, Arlene Weiner and Angele Ellis.

This event is presented by UPPAGUS, an online poetry and fiction journal.

Chabad of the South Hills and the South Hills Jewish Community Center will hold a High Holiday senior lunch and concert on Tuesday, Sept. 16 at 12:30 p.m. at the South Hills JCC in Scott Township.  In addition to lunch, there will be musical entertainment, a High Holiday-themed program and raffle prizes. There is a $5 suggested donation. The building is wheelchair accessible. Preregistration is required; Contact Barb at 412-278-2658 or

A High Holidays Challah Bake to make kosher challahs for the Squirrel Hill Community Food Pantry will be held at several times on Tuesday, Sept. 16.

The Pantry serves more than 850 people every year. This year, they hope to ensure that every Rosh Hashanah table includes a fresh made-with-love kosher challah. Deena Ross and Moishe Siebzner from Creative Kosher are donating their time and supplies to help with this project. Volunteers will do the baking and making as well as bagging and labeling.

On Wednesday, Sept. 17 volunteers are needed to pick up the challahs from Poale Zedek and drop them off at the Pantry at 9 a.m. Contact Jenny Jones, Jewish Federation Volunteer Center coordinator, at 412-992-5209 or for the schedule and more information or visit

WorkAble, a United Way of Allegheny County-funded partnership of the Career Development Center of Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Pittsburgh, North Hills Community Outreach and South Hills Interfaith Ministries, will hold a fall career fair for adults throughout the region on Thursday, Sept. 18 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Bethel Park Community Center, 5151 Park Ave. The career fair will include employers from Rivers Casino, the University of Pittsburgh, the West Penn Allegheny Health System, the Community College of Allegheny County (South Campus) and St. Clair Hospital, among others.

The career fair is appropriate for all levels of professional experience, and available positions range from entry level to director level. Available opportunities include jobs in administration, finance, operations, customer service, education and hands-on positions in the healthcare field such as RNs, therapists and home-health aides.

“This career fair features such a broad spectrum of positions for all levels of experience and career paths with well-known employers in our region,” said Patrick Ferraro, employer relations consultant at the Career Development Center of JF&CS.  “If you’re a job-seeker in Western Pennsylvania, this is a can’t-miss event.”

WorkAble serves unemployed and underemployed individuals throughout Allegheny County at NHCO sites in Allison Park and Millvale, SHIM offices in Bethel Park and JF&CS offices in Squirrel Hill.

Those wishing to attend must register in advance by calling 412-854-9120, ext. 23. Those who need assistance can call the WorkAble hotline at 412-904-5993 or visit

The Loaves of Love Mega Challah Bake will take place on Thursday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. in the Congregation Beth Shalom Ballroom, 5915 Beacon St. Jewish women and girls bat mitzvah age and up from every part of the community will make and shape two loaves of challah — one to bring home and one to share with a friend. The charge is $18 in advance, $25 at the door and $36 to sponsor the event.

Visit to register and for more information.

NA’AMAT’s Shirli Shavit, director of the International Department of NA’AMAT Israel, recently reported that the organization is acting swiftly to secure day-care centers and assist children and families traumatized by violence during the current crisis in Israel, but more needs to be done. Emergency funds provided by NA’AMAT USA have already enabled the group to reinforce safe rooms at a number of day-care centers, protecting children from rocket attacks. NA’AMAT operates 250 day-care centers in Israel, serving more than 18,000 children of all ethnicities and religious backgrounds. Marcia Weiss, president of NA’AMAT Pittsburgh Council and national vice president, emphasized that NA’AMAT is vitally important to promoting the welfare of children, women and families and the nation of Israel.

The support that NA’AMAT Israel has received from NA’AMAT USA and eight other “sister” countries has been vital to its ability to continue to serve families safely during the current conflict. “I wanted to share with the Haverot what we are going through in Israel and express our appreciation for their continued devotion and commitment,” Shavit said.

She described the challenges faced by children, families and caregivers in the wake of daily sirens and imminent threat of rockets. NA’AMAT facilities in Israel remain vulnerable, and there is an ongoing need for supplemental funding. NA’AMAT USA has been carrying out an emergency fundraising effort since Israel began military operations in Operation Protective Edge.

To donate to NA’AMAT’s Operation Protective Edge Emergency Fund, visit

The Carnegie Shul’s Mike Roteman came up with a new challenge for the community, A Lighted Sabbath. Roteman is challenging everyone to light Shabbat candles this week or next, saying a special prayer for the State of Israel, and to make a contribution in any amount to the Israel Emergency Fund of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh online at

 The cost for humanitarian assistance to Israeli citizens has skyrocketed as has the Israeli government’s defense expenses. A contribution will help to provide immediate relief from the line of fire for more than 45,000 children. For the price of dinner for two, the fund can provide a critical day of relief for children living closest to the line of fire.  Other programs provide enrichment classes for teens and activity kits to distract children confined to shelters.

Contact Roteman at for more information about the challenge and how to spread it.

An extensive collection of Yiddish-language audio books is now available for free listening and downloading through a project of the Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, Mass., to preserve the voices of the last generation of European-born native Yiddish speakers.

The Sami Rohr Library of Recorded Yiddish Books comprises some 150 titles, including novels, short stories, nonfiction works, memoirs, essays and poetry by both major and lesser-known Yiddish writers.

The collection grew over the years thanks to dedicated volunteers — some of them professional actors, many of them laymen, all of them native Yiddish speakers — who devoted hours to reading and recording the books in a makeshift studio.

The Yiddish Book Center, in partnership with the Jewish Public Library, digitally remastered those recordings and previously released a number of titles from the Sami Rohr Library on CD. The entire collection is now accessible on the Center’s website,, where the recordings can be listened to or downloaded to mobile devices, free of charge.

Highlights of the Library include works by well-known Yiddish writers such as novelists I.J. Singer, I.L. Peretz and Sholem Asch and poets Chaim Nachman Bialik and Avrom Sutzkever. The collection also includes several works by Sholem Aleichem, including his “Tevye der milkhiker” (“Teyve the Dairyman”), read by actor Shmuel Atzmon, founder and director of Yiddishpiel Theater in Tel Aviv. Dora Wasserman, founder of an eponymous Yiddish theater in Montreal, reads a collection of short stories.