Under the concept that all Jews are responsible for one another, the Orthodox Union’s Project Areivim sends volunteers with special knowledge and skills from their home communities to nearby and distant synagogue communities around the country. Areivim, or those who look out for one another, offer their talents, be it delivering speeches, one-on-one learning, or prayer service leadership.
With chapters and regions across United States and Canada, NCSY — the international youth program of the Orthodox Union — has become a household name on the North American continent. Its mark has been left not only on the map but in the hearts of countless thousands of teens who have been inspired by NCSY to discover the beauty of their heritage. With an awareness that it’s not only North American teens who are subject to assimilation, but their counterparts in South America as well, NCSY has expanded, first to Chile, where it has operated for the past four years, and now to Argentina, where the new NCSY chapter will be officially dedicated.
When New Orleans was hit by Hurricane Katrina in August, 2005, Congregation Beth Israel of New Orleans, an Orthodox Union synagogue, captured worldwide attention when a photo of Torah scrolls being carried from the synagogue’s wreckage by a dedicated volunteer rescue worker was transmitted across the world. Jewish life has begun to revive in New Orleans and into this reemerging community last year appeared Rabbi Uri Topolosky, hired to take over as spiritual leader of a synagogue that still did not have a building to call its own.
Responding to the nationwide subprime crisis and the wave of home foreclosures across the country, the Orthodox Union Job Board will present a webcast intended for a national audience, The American Dream’s Rude Awakening – Mortgage Debacle and Foreclosures, which will take place Tuesday, June 24, 6:00 – 8:00 pm. The session, broadcast live, can be accessed from anywhere in North America (or the world) by visiting www.ou.org/jobs, although a small audience will be in attendance on a first-come first-serve basis.
High school graduation means an end to an important phase in a student’s life, including in many cases involvement in the teen programs of NCSY, the youth division of the Orthodox Union. With the goal of making sure that NCSY experiences are not forgotten, the Orthodox Union’s newly created Department of Alumni Connections has undertaken to help these students connect with Jewish life on their campus or in the surrounding area. This program has become particularly important because of the overwhelming success of NCSY’s outreach to public high schools, from which the majority of Jewish students choose to go to secular rather than Jewish colleges and universities.
It is one of the most famous and venerable symbols in America, perhaps in the world, ranking up there with the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval and similar iconic designs. It is the Orthodox Union logo, the letter U inside the letter O, and not only does it adorn more than 400,000 products certified as kosher by the OU, but in another form, with the Hebrew words Torah U’Mitzvot (Torah and the commandments) added, it appears on OU publications, letterheads, publicity material and everything that the organization disseminates to the outside world.
OU Kosher will provide a halachic, historic and archeological perspective of Eretz Yisrael, the Land of Israel, Jerusalem, the Temple Mount and the special mitzvot that are connected to this holy land when it presents Kedushas Ha’Aretz and its Mitzvos, Sunday, June 15 from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p. m. at Lander College in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens.
For years, members of Yachad and their families have spent one Shabbat a year together in a warm, friendly setting to share their experiences and offer mutual support and networking. For the past nine years, members of Our Way have joined them. This year, the tradition continues. Yachad and Our Way of the Orthodox Union are proud to present the 22nd Annual Family Shabbaton, to be held Friday-Sunday, May 30-June 1, at Kutsher’s Country Club in Monticello, NY, in the Catskills Mountains.