Rosh Hashanah greetings from Helsinki, Finland
Center for Study and Dissemination of Judaism and Zionism, Finland
Name of implementing organization:The Jewish Community of Finland
Date of initial project approval:February 2012
Project aims and objectives
To strengthen Jewish knowledge, Jewish identity, and Zionism
Children and adults
The Center for Study and Dissemination of Judaism and Zionism conducts Jewish-Zionist educational initiatives for Jews in Finland of all ages and backgrounds. This project will expand and enhance the activities of the Center. The project is comprised of a number of elements:
· A B'nei Mitzvah Program will become an on-going program for children in grades 5 and 6. The program is open to all children in this age group. Group sessions meet on Thursdays twice monthly. An individual program with individual sessions also is designed for each child. The program includes family activities. Local madrichim assist in teaching. The project conducts 2-day B'nei Mitzvah Camp sessions, twice each year. The camp provides the children with an opportunity to be immersed in Jewish life and to experience Mitzvot. The program is implemented by two Israeli teachers, who teach in Hebrew, and a translator.
· A Jewish Academy meets once a week. It offers educational lectures and dynamic workshops which deepen knowledge of Jewish Tradition and Zionism, and strengthen Jewish identity. Weekly Hebrew language lessons are taught by the teacher from Israel. Other classes are conducted by lecturers from the community. The applicant expects 15-20 weekly participants in the Academy.
· A Jewish-Israeli Library comprised of Hebrew books opens on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It offers a children's story hour, and lectures for adults, in Hebrew, presented by community members. A Club for Young Children ages 0-3, and their families, meets on Tuesdays twice monthly. Each session presents a topic connected to the Jewish year or to Jewish life, and includes song, movement, and free play.
· Cultural Shabbatot once each month (with 50-70 participants expected) include a traditional Shabbat meal with a focus on a specific ethnic group in the community (e.g. Russian, Israeli, Finnish), and a lecture presented in the language of that group. The Center takes an active role in planning community celebrations of Jewish holidays, including activities for children and traditional holiday dinners. The Center also implements holiday celebrations for the small Jewish community of Tempara, located 170 km. from Helsinki. Each month, the Center marks the Shabbat before Rosh Chodesh with Mincha services, Seuda Shlishit, and a discussion. The Center also is implementing two new programs which encourage children to attend synagogue. A special Shabbat service for children includes a short service with singing and a story. A Youth Chazzanim program prepares youth to conduct parts of the regular Shabbat service. The project includes Film & Burger, a screening of an Israeli film accompanied by a kosher hamburger. A new group for young adults, ages 18-30, conducts Shabbat dinners, discussions of Jewish topics, Hebrew language classes, and field trips.
One of the teachers from Israel serves as the Jewish Studies teacher for grades 5-9 in the day school. The project supports a translator in the classroom to translate his lessons to Finnish. It also supports a school newspaper, and 4 study days during school vacations. The project also conducts "Friday school" with a Shabbat program, for children in gan through Grade 2, from the end of the school day through the start of Shabbat.
NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS:
The project will have the following minimum number of participants: B'nei Mitzvah Program – 15 participants; B'nei Mitzvah Camp – the same 15 children as above will attend the camp, and a total of at least 50 people altogether (including families) will participate; Jewish Academy -- 15 participants.
The two teachers from Israel have a central role in initiating and implementing this project. Community members who are able to present lectures also contribute to the project, as do B'nei Akiva madrichim.
Camp sessions take place on the facilities of a scouts camp, which is rented.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION?
Two teachers from Israel who arrived in Finland in 2010
Lecturers from the community
Main budget elements
Teachers and lecturers
Accommodations and transportation (for camp)