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August 28, 1970 - Image 15

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1970-08-28

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in Center Ulpan Put Hebrew to Use in Israel

Latin American Parley
Spurs Torah Education

BUENOS AIRES—A broad pro-
gram to expand Torah education
in Latin American countries was
adopted at a five-day conference
of the Latin American branches
of the Agudath Israel world move-
ment, attended by Orthodox lead-
ers from five countries.
The conference, whose guest is
the executive president of Agu-
dath Israel of America, Rabbi
Moshe Sherer, also laid the
groundwork for "a program of
pan-American Orthodox Jewish co-
operation," whereby North Amer-
ican Jewish communities would
sponsor the initiation of new pro-
jects in South American countries
to mobilize Jewish youth for
closer commitment to religious
U.S. Ambassador John Davis
Lodge tendered a reception at the
American Embassy here in honor
of Rabbi Sherer.

The more a man writes, the more
he can write.—William Hazlitt.

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Members of the Jewish Center's summer ulpan in Israel get
together with their Israeli buddies on tour. The summer ulpan is an
annual program, 'Including a year's study at the Center and the
following summer in Israel.


(Hyman Skenkman writes of an in-
creasingly popular way to visit Israel
among young Detroiters. The Jewish
Center's Hebrew Ulpan is a two-year
program, with teen-agers studying He-
brew for a year, and the -following
summer touring Israel. In this way,
they have a working knowledge of
Hebrew before they visit. While there,
they make friends with Israelis their
own age and tour the country.)

On top of the Carmel in Haifa,
15 American youngsters (nine of
them Detroiters) stayed in Beth
Rothenberg. They were all mine by
heart. One was my own. It was
Friday afternoon when I and my
wife left for their oneg shabat.
The climbing and curving way up
that sunny, blessed hill felt like a
road to a picnic. The get-together

with all the happy youngsters was
more than just a picnic. With appe-
tites driven by the fresh air they
surrounded the dinner table.
Ezri, their sabra head, advises in
Hebrew. The ulpanites, youngsters
from 16-18 with Hebrew back-
grounds, seem to understand what
he is saying.
"I'oda raba"—answers Clyde
Young, a Detroit Negro youth.
For a Catholic Central youth he
has mastered a fine Hebrew
vocabulary and pronunciation ...
Another Hebrew call from Ezri,

and everybody left the dining hall
for the Mesiba.
The discussion took place in a
casual atmosphere. The young
men and girls were sitting in
chairs in a round circle interwoven
with Israeli pals. The topic was
"What kind of a Jew am I?"
"My family and I are members
of Young Israel in Oak Park,
Michigan," said Denny Simkovitz,
a blonde, blue-eyed 17-year-old with
an embossed skull cap on the top
of his head. "I know," he went on
—"that I still don't preserve the
Sabbath the way it really should
be, but I'm coming towards lit"
"My dad is a doctor in Milwau-
kee," said a longish-haired teen.
"We don't go to shul, but he was
all his life a Zionist."
I had to calm down my son, ex-
plaining that he is half right. The
other half, the practical side, dic-
tates that since not every Zionist
will nor can immigate to Israel
and Israel still needs his help, we
must preserve the term for all
those who feel at heart and con-
sider themselves Zionists along
with some of non-Jews, who work
for this noble cause of providing
a home for all Jews, the poor,
the old, the sick .
As a matter of fact I heard an
Israeli say "We are no longer
Zionists, we are Israelis. You
from the diaspora are the Jews,
we here are the goyim."
"Tell us, Clyde, something about

yourself," Ezri turned to the wiry,
handsome Negro.
"What can I tell you, man? I'm
not Jewish."
"That we know," said Ezri, amid
a spurt of laughter. "But tell us
what attracted you to visit Israel.
Tell us about your Catholic reli-
gion. How little Israeli kids know
about it."
"Jerusalem, Nazareth and Beth-
lehem," he said, "I always wanted
to see with my own eyes. My visit
to Israel made me a stronger
Catholic. The people here are great.
They don't know color. When my
nine weeks are over I would just
like to come home for 3 days,
see how things are and return to
Then a pretty Detroiter named
Mary Lloyd took her turn in the
discussion. "I'm a Christian. I
don't know whether I'm a Prot-
estant or Catholic. I was baptized
here in Israel for the first time
in my life."
I spent the yom Shabat with
Israeli kids in their home as a
guest. Now I believe that the real
day of rest is the Sabbath. Here
you can feel the day of rest. Every-
body dresses up for it and looks
forward to it. One can feel the
spirit of Sabbath at home, on the
street, everywhere. The Israeli
people are real .
And so were the kids from the
States, God bless them all.
What.an experience that was for
me! How can I ever forget it?

Friday, August 28, 1970-15

N. Y. Storefront Psychiatric Centers
Called Models for Urban Problems


AUG. 28 & 29
Fri. 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.;
Sat. 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

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(Copyright 1970, JTA, Inc.)
Two storefront centers in poverty
areas in Brooklyn, created by the
Maimonides Medical Center to pro-
vide urgently needed mental health
and social services, have proved
in less than a year of operation
to be "models" of successful pre-
ventive psychiatry for the nation,
according to medical center offi-
The Maimonides Neighborhood
Service Center in Boro Park, lo-
cated on a street of glass-littered
and decaying buildings, has be-
come "a community refuge for the
disenchanted, the old, the young,
the sick and the poor" in Boro
Park, according to a Maimonides
Journal report. The other center is
in Sunset Park. Both operate as
satellites of the Maimonides Com-
munity Mental Health Center
which provides treatment and pre-
ventive mental health services for
more than 100,000 New Yorkers.

The storefront staffs are bi-
lingual, and printed materials
are available in at least two
languages—English and Spanish
—and often in Yiddish and Italian,
as well. Programs and policies
at the centers are determined by
committees of community resi-
dents and staff members. The
centers provide a wide range of
services and programs, including
development of action
for better housing, sanitation,
welfare, child care and recrea-

Dr. Montague Ullman, director
of the mental health program,
cited an example of how the store-
front center acts to help people in
need and to get them involved in
community activity. A frightened
elderly Jewish woman, who lives
alone, telephoned the Boro Park
storefront center because there
were rats in her apartment.
At the same time, 15-year-old
Juan T., a Puerto Rican youth,
came to the center to discuss a
problem with the community or-
ganizer. When he heard about
the rat problem, the youth said
"Let's go over there and plug up


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the wall."
In minutes, Dr. Ullman reported,
a team of a staff member and a
community resident arrived at the
apartment to end the problem. The
woman was not only rid of the rats
but she also became friendly with
the visitors.
She gradually became trans-
formed from a virtual recluse into
an active participant in the work
of the storefront center. She now
regularly arrives at the storefront
with snacks for all persons there.



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