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K–news Parshas nitzavim-vayelech august 30, 2013 24 Elul 5773

Shana Tova! hEndon mP droPS in

KiSharon'S 2013 aPPEal

For SPEcial occaSionS

FabulouS Family

Kisharon initiatives win praise from a special visitor

Adorable Anaelle is set to win hearts

See our gorgeous new greetings cards

The Greens helped Kisharon raise ÂŁ750k

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A new year marks a new beginning for adult services ▲ chaim boruch Sharer and Kisharon Support Worker Shmuli Jacobs bake honey cakes at the yad voezer community centre

Kisharon is moving its Stamford Hill base to Yad Voezer Community Centre in September to improve the provision of day opportunities for Jewish adults with learning difficulties and disabilities. Visitors at an informal open day for parents and carers yesterday, (Thursday) saw a multi-sensory room, a therapy kitchen and a virtual (computerised) fish tank in the reception!

and volunteering opportunities. Mrs Zelda Landau, Chief Executive of Yad Voezer added,“We are delighted to work closely with Kisharon and look forward to developing additional services together in the future. This new collaboration is a fitting start to Rosh Hashanah and we look forward to welcoming people coming to our centre for the first time to benefit from a wide range of activities and programmes.”

Both organisations are committed to helping people with learning disabilities to maximise their independence and make a meaningful contribution to the local community through work

Our cover shows Kisharon Chief Executive Dr Bev Jacobson and Mrs Zelda Landau, Chief Executive of Yad Voezer at Yad Voezer Community Centre Photos: John Rifkin

Kisharon initiatives win praise from MP

He toured Bus Stop Bikes and the Print Shop and chatted to staff. He said: “I really admire what Kisharon does. Not only does the charity provide employment opportunities and training but they are running a viable and sustainable business too. This is a fantastic model of a social

enterprise that gives people with learning difficulties a real sense of their own value.” Joe Coogan, Kisharon’s Director of Operations said: “Matthew Offord was really pleased when I told him that not only will the business centre break even, but we have an ambitious target for profits next year.”


To all our ‘agents of hope’… Kisharon’s annual inset day was held on Wednesday. The majority of our services closed in the morning to allow staff a chance to come together from all seven sites to celebrate the successes and learn from the challenges of the year that has just passed. There was much to celebrate. 5773 witnessed continued growth for Kisharon Day School, a National Professional Qualification for Headship for Headteacher Sora Kopfstein, and a Good to Outstanding Ofsted inspection. In our adult service, burgeoning numbers of


young adults have gained independence through travel training and have secured paid employment. Another exciting initiative has been our work with JobcentrePlus which has funded individuals to attend the Asher Loftus Business Centre, and to undertake Kisharon’s cycle maintenance course which in turn has led to employment. A similar graphic design course is now to be offered through the Print Shop. The year’s final coup was the appointment of three experienced and talented

Photos: Sue rifkin

The opportunities available at Kisharon for adults with learning difficulties impressed Hendon MP Matthew Offord on a visit to the Asher Loftus Business Centre.

abovE: mP matthew offord with richard Franklin, director of Fundraising and communications and, right,yaakov leon lEFT: Shoshana Waldman, matthew offord mP and Esther Schloss at the Print Shop

dr beverley Jacobson by

Kisharon chief Executive

professionals who have come on board to form an exciting and dynamic senior leadership team for Kisharon. The inset day gave them a platform to share their vision and plans for 5774. The timing of the inset day so close to Rosh Hashonah provided impetus for reflection. It made me realise the extent of energy and effort invested every day by so many in improving the lives of the people who

rely on Kisharon. We have much to be thankful for. In particular, I would like to thank our staff team who work with empathy and drive to bring out the best in the children and adults we support; our trustees, who make the weight of the Kisharon responsibility seem light, and who shoulder it with generosity and pride. To quote our outgoing Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, you are all ‘agents of hope in a world when others despair’. Finally, it remains for me to thank you, our supporters and donors, who have enabled us to make the impossible possible in 5773. I wish you all a Kesiva V’Chasimah Tovah.

Kisharon Head Office: 54 Parson Street, London, NW4 1TP ● T: 020 8203 2233 ● Helpline: 0844 496 4636


Anaelle heads our appeal In her 30th week of pregnancy, doctors recommended that Sharon Silberstein abort her brain-damaged child. And when the baby girl was born, Sharon was told that her life wouldn’t be worth living. Today, Anaelle, three, who has cerebral palsy and severe brain damage, attends Tuffkid Nursery. She does not walk or talk but loves having fun with other children and her support workers.

doctors wrong. She said: “Carers and teachers provide exceptional one-toone care for each and every child. Anaelle is constantly learning new skills. I only have to see her smile to know that Tuffkid is the best place for her. Kisharon has turned our lives around.

This is the poignant and moving story on Kisharon’s Rosh Hashonah appeal letters this year. Kisharon is hoping to raise more than £50,000 from the appeal. Sharon, of Edgware, who is married to Joel, says that Kisharon proved the

“Initially I felt self-conscious about being featured, but I know that it is the right thing to do. I was compelled to write about the incredible work that Kisharon does because the community’s support will give my daughter, and hundreds of other children, the chance to reach their potential and lead fulfilling lives. A paediatrician once said that Anaelle would be lucky to survive into her early teens, so for us every New Year is a blessing.”

new job thrill for elianne

Great openings for volunteers Do you have an hour to spare every week to befriend one of the people Kisharon supports? The time can be spent doing something you enjoy like baking, walking, cycling, reading or playing a game.This is a great opportunity for anyone over 16, a pair of friends or an individual.

Elianne Vogel is delighted to have started her first job. She is working at W. Lettings and Management in Hampstead, taking two buses to get there. Her Support Worker, Geraldine Frankel, accompanies Elianne on the journey and back again, staying with her at work. She said: “Staff leave Elianne a huge pile of shredding for Wednesday mornings when she goes in. She has only just started, but once she gets into the routine she will be extremely fast. Elianne is thrilled to have a job and loves earning money!”

Kisharon is also offering an internship in its busy volunteering department. The individual, who will work as a volunteer coordinator assistant, will gain valuable experience and insight into the charity sector. Kisharon is looking for a commitment of three to six months, twice a week and the intern will need good organisational and IT skills.

A Kisharon welcome to Lara Lara Domjan has become Kisharon’s new Volunteer Coordinator. Formerly with the Jewish international development organisation Tzedek, Lara has a master’s degree in international development and a degree in education, specialising in special needs. ■ Francine Haagman is on maternity leave.

An event coordinator to help plan Mitzvah Day is needed too.This is an opportunity to get involved in a major project, the hours are flexible and the work can be done from home. Interested in any of these opportunities? Why not come to our next coffee morning on October 2 from 10-11am? For more information call Lara on 020 3393 0152 or email

Kisharon Head Office: 54 Parson Street, London, NW4 1TP ● T: 020 8203 2233 ● Helpline: 0844 496 4636



w ▲ Support Worker benjy Sopel and chaim dovid

Raising funds on tricycle made for two

Talya, who has cerebral palsy, epilepsy,

In addition to the Kisharon helpline, some of the money raised will be donated to Afrika Tikkun which helps children with disabilities in impoverished communities in South Africa. To donate visit TalyaGemmaJacobson



Talya, 19, and Gemma, 11, are cycling 200 miles, the distance from their home to Manchester, on a tandem trike with the aim of raising in excess of £20,000 in sponsorship. The ride began at the start of the summer with daily two hour, 10-mile trips near their home. They are set to complete the final few miles in Manchester by the start of school term.

a severe visual impairment and learning difficulties, planned to enrol at the Jewish residential Langdon College in Manchester. But, frustrated by their local authority’s original reluctance to agree the placement, the two sisters took on the ride partly to show the authority that this was what Talya really wanted, and also to raise money in Gemma’s batmitzvah year to help other children with disabilities here and abroad.


A remarkable fundraising initiative by two of Chief Executive Dr Bev Jacobson’s daughters will provide a boost for Kisharon’s helpline. The helpline which was launched last year has proved to be a highly needed service and talks are in the pipeline to increase its reach by transforming it into a national service in collaboration with other learning disability charities.

rosh hashonah – the day of Judgement


As we approach the all-important Day of Judgement and the Day of Atonement, Rosh Hashonah and Yom Kippur respectively, the Torah teaches us that the whole world is judged on Rosh Hashonah not just the Jewish people.Whether we will live, have peace, success, etc is all decided by G-d over this period.

“Where are you?” Why should the Creator of the Universe ask man such a question? Of course He knew where they were and what they had done. H-shem gave mankind (two people at that time) one commandment and they failed. What is G-d teaching us here by asking “Ayeka?”

In the book of Bereishis, Genesis, we learn about mankind’s first ever sin and H-shem’s response.What was the sin? The serpent encouraged Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, then she gave some to Adam and he ate it. H-shem’s response was to demand “Ayeka?”,

The answer is as follows. Man is created good – we are all good people. The causing or provoking factor that causes most of us to do bad things is not down to us per se, but rather a result of external influences on us. “Everyone else is doing something


yaakov Kramer

head of limmudei Kodesh

Kisharon Head Office: 54 Parson Street, London, NW4 1TP ● T: 020 8203 2233 ● Helpline: 0844 496 4636


A Parisian adventure for Chaim Dovid Paris, one of the most beautiful cities in the world, was Chaim Dovid Rotenberg’s summer holiday destination this year. Chaim Dovid, who lives at The Drive in Golders Green, said: “We left London at lunch time for a two-hour Eurostar train journey. “That evening I visited the Montparnasse

all credit to the trendy new

Tower, where there was an amazing view from the top and you could see the lights of Paris.” On his trip, Chaim Dovid packed in visits to the Arc de Triomphe, The Louvre, where he saw the Mona Lisa, and he climbed to the top of the Eiffel Tower.“It took a very long time but it was worth it, as it is a famous world site. I really enjoyed visiting Paris

and seeing everything,” added Chaim Dovid, who was accompanied on the trip by Support Worker Benjy Sopel. Robert Speker, Supported Living Manager (Men’s Units) said: “It was wonderful that Chaim Dovid chose where he wanted to go on holiday, and helped to plan his activities for the trip.”


Thistle do nicely for a great break Five Hanna Schwalbe Home residents had a Highland fling with a fiveday break in Scotland. The group, accompanied by five staff, flew to Glasgow for a packed schedule of sightseeing in the country famed for kilts, bagpipes and the very finest whiskies.

Kisharon has carved out a new niche as the name behind some of the trendiest greetings cards on the high street after redesigning its entire range.

Many are the popular, small, square shape and new greetings have been added, including ‘Thank you teacher’. A bereavement card is part of the collection for the first time. The new cards are available in the shops now for just £1.30 each. Breathing new life into the Kisharon selection was the work of Kisharon Graphic Designer Sarai Cross.

wrong or perverse, so I’ve got to do it too. It looks so cool. Everyone else must be having such a good time. I don’t want to miss out.” The Yetzer Horo, the evil inclination in a person, can be likened to the most expert salesman we are ever going to experience in our lives – set up by H-shem Himself! How did we let that Yetzer Horo trick us into believing that a hostile pursuit was worth it? How did we fall for the false sale? This is what H-shem is asking every single one of us on Rosh Hashonah. The serpent in our own lives can be anyone – a bad friend,

Meals were provided by Rabbi Chaim Jacobs and his wife Sora, who run a kosher restaurant in the city. “We saw some very beautiful buildings, toured museums and had a picnic on the banks of the Clyde,” said Hanna Schwalbe Home Manager Petrona Johnson. “We had a lovely time.”

the media or our own evil inclination. The more we do a wrong thing, the more it becomes routine, the less it feels wrong. This effect on a person can cause them to lose their identity. They are no longer the real ‘them’; they are a slave to the serpent. Hence, H-shem asks mankind “Ayeka?” Where are YOU? The real you.Where do you stand in your yidishkeit? By what principles do you stand?

Our task during this auspicious time is to reflect on and to admit our sins, verbally, to G-d. H-shem is crying out for us to return to Him. The Rambam states that even a person who has sinned all his life – broke Shabbos, ate pork, etc – can do this mitzvo of repentance, even on the day of his death, and in the World to Come he will not be reminded of his evil deeds.

When we eventually meet our Maker, we cannot blame our personal situations (which G-d Himself gives us) as an excuse. ‘My parents were divorced’, ‘I had a disadvantaged background’, ‘I was ugly’ or ‘I had a disability’.

May we all take time to be introspective and resolved to improve ourselves, one small step at a time. May H-shem reward our efforts of spiritual growth by inscribing us in the book of life and shower us with peace, good health and success.

Kisharon Head Office: 54 Parson Street, London, NW4 1TP ● T: 020 8203 2233 ● Helpline: 0844 496 4636



There’s the rub...

Moonlight walkers step out to raise £25k Mothers, sisters, daughters and friends raised £25k in Kisharon’s second Moonlight Walk last month. More than 60 participants, starting from Alexandra Palace, walked either the 10 km or 20 km route through Hampstead and Golders Green, with a stop off at Kisharon Day School.Youngest

walkers were ten-year-olds Jessica Yefet and Mayan Zucker, daughter of Kisharon’s Human Resources Manager Lee Zucker. Head of Fundraising Adele Busse, who completed the 20km loop, said: “When you reach the finishing line there is a huge sense of achievement.”

Fabulous fundraisers

Daniel and sharon ensured Gala Dinner was huge success October 29 2012 was especially memorable for Daniel Green. It was his birthday, and the day he was asked: “Will you and your wife Sharon chair Kisharon’s Gala Dinner committee?” The Hendon couple thought long and hard. Sharon said: “If we were going to do it, we wanted to do it properly. We knew it would take up a great deal of time so we thought carefully before we decided.” Taking up the challenge was the start of a hectic eight months, culminating in a fabulous evening at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge Hotel in June that raised an incredible £750,000. Sharon said: “We have been to Kisharon’s Sisters cammy, seven, and fiveyear-old lexi cleared out their unwanted books during the summer holidays and sold them all outside their home, raising £18.90 for Kisharon.


Sharon and daniel Green with their four children Sam, adina,avi and Sara leah

annual dinners before and raised funds but had never taken on such a big project. There was a great deal to do, especially towards the end, but it was all worthwhile. Kisharon is such a special, wonderful cause. We had a tour of Kisharon before the dinner. It made us even more determined that everything should go well.”

a proud bezy Gluck

Silverware at six United Synagogue shuls is gleaming and ready for the Yamim Noraim, thanks to Kisharon adults. Simcha Ballon, Abish Leifer, Bezy Gluck and Moishe Goldblatt worked hard polishing the silver at Mill Hill shul. Other shuls that benefitted are Finchley, Belmont, Brondesbury Park, St John’s Wood and Woodside Park. The pre-Rosh Hashonah silver cleaning programme, organised by Kisharon and US Chesed, has been running since 2010. The work is overseen by silverware consultant Ray Temple. Joseph Lavi, Kisharon Support Worker said: “Polishing the silver in local synagogues represents precisely what Kisharon stands for. It provides the people we support with an opportunity to have an active role within the community. They take a great deal of satisfaction from the knowledge that they have made a productive contribution.”

Sharon’s high point was hearing the explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes. “He spoke brilliantly, and everyone wanted to hear more.” Would Sharon and Daniel do it all over again, next year? Sharon said: “We have been asked, but we have a barmitzvah next year, closely followed by a batmitzvah, so we’re not 100 per cent sure yet.”

moishe Goldblatt

Kisharon Head Office: 54 Parson Street, London, NW4 1TP ● T: 020 8203 2233 ● Helpline: 0844 496 4636

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