Community

Last fall, Donald and Bonnie Dwares announced a major donation to the Alliance Jewish Community Center to help update and renovate the building. The process started, and behind-the-scenes work has been going on ever since. Renovations are now in full swing.

Visitors to the now renamed Dwares JCC have grown accustomed to seeing signs of construction around the building. But some haven’t even noticed the work despite the signs in the lobby. Early portions of the project included work on the HVAC system. The women’s locker rooms have been updated and so has the aquatics area. But the Alliance JCC Early Childhood Center (ECC) had remained untouched.

Now, thanks to a gift pledged by David C. Isenberg and family, the preschool is in the process of a major upgrade. Phase one has begun of what will be a total building renovation with an eye to updating all the facilities in very visible ways.

The old boilers had to be dismantled, and have been removed. /Jewish AllianceThe old boilers had to be dismantled, and have been removed. /Jewish AllianceHe started with the playground and moved on to the whole preschool. And David Isenberg couldn’t be prouder.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to be able to do this,” he said of helping the Alliance JCC Early Childhood Center as it moves toward what Isenberg hopes will be a world-class facility. Isenberg has made a gift of $250,000 to help accomplish this. “If people could say ‘Wow, I want my kids to attend the Alliance JCC ECC,’ that’s a real nice gift,” he says.

He believes that the children of our community deserve a good start. And that begins with preschool. His children got that at the JCC, and his grandchildren have benefited, and he wants that to continue.

“There’s a meaningful history here,” he says. Add to that the many recent accomplishments and innovations in curriculum that will only be enhanced by a top-notch facility.

Jason FreedmanJason FreedmanTo say that Jason Freedman draws monsters is an understatement. He doesn’t just draw them – he brings them to life. His creatures are filled with glee, and looking at his troublemakers evokes merriment. Like the monsters, which he describes as “off-beat, colorful and full of life,” their creator is joyful and fun. This stay-at-home dad is having a great time drawing, and yet, he’s slightly self-conscious about the amount of enjoyment he feels and credit he receives for something that’s essentially playtime.

 

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, in Geneva,  they have reached an agreement on a framework for Syria to destroy all chemical weapons.Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, in Geneva, they have reached an agreement on a framework for Syria to destroy all chemical weapons.(Part one of three parts)

NEW YORK – Read about the highs and lows of 5774 – and everything in between. Part one covers events from September through December 2013.

September 2013


The United States and Russia
 reach a deal to rid Syria of its arsenal of chemical weapons, prompting Jewish groups to suspend their efforts lobbying for U.S. strikes against Damascus.

Rabbi Philip Berg, founder of the Kabbalah Centre in Los Angeles and teacher of Jewish mysticism for A-list celebrities, dies at age 86.

William Rapfogel, the ousted leader of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty in New York, is arrested on charges of grand larceny and money laundering. Investigators later say the scheme involving Rapfogel netted $9 million in illicit funds, including $3 million for Rapfogel himself. Rapfogel pleads guilty the following April and, in July, is sent to prison for 3-1/2 to 10 years.

Gilor MeshulamGilor Meshulam“Awesome” is how Gilor Meshulam describes his first weeks in Rhode Island. The Israeli shaliach (emissary) to the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island paid a visit to The Voice office at the end of his second week in Rhode Island, and we had a chance to get to know him better.

We’ve been reading his reports during Operation Protective Edge in the newspaper since July. But now, he’s in Rhode Island, meeting rabbis, educators and other community members and traveling around the area, learning about his home for the next year or two