Member News

The sound of the shofar calls us all to awaken and to turn our thoughts more fully towards those who are in need of our support, especially during such hard times as these have been across the globe.  This time of year is traditionally the Jewish time for giving, a time to fulfil one of our most sacred obligations of tzedakah, and we know that you will be as generous as you can be for this year’s Appeal.  Each year Council nominates three charities for the appeal and each year you generously give.  This year we are supporting our own 'Together we'll stay connected' appeal; Jnetics here in the UK and in Israel the Hand-in-Hand Schools.

SWESRS 'Together we'll stay connected' appeal

The exciting announcement of our new Rabbi coincided with the launch of our 'Together we'll stay connected' appeal.  Following our highly successful pilot for hybrid services, we are more determined than ever to ensure that every member can stay connected together. We picture a shul where community and social events as well as services can be both online and in person, with everyone sharing a satisfactory experience. We picture a shul where we can all participate regardless of needs. But purchasing and installing the technology for full hybrid services costs more money than we have.  Please give what you can to help us reach the £20,000 that we need.


It is estimated that everyone of Jewish ancestry has a 1 in 5 chance of carrying at least one of the main recessive Jewish genetic disorders.  Jnetics is a small charity with a big ambition – to make a real difference to the prevention, diagnosis and management of Jewish genetic disorders. These vary in severity, but include conditions that are fatal in childhood and others that lead to chronic disability and shortened lifespan.  No cure exists for the vast majority of these disorders; however, thanks to scientific developments it is now possible to greatly improve their prevention and management.  Jnetics was established in 2009 to raise awareness of Jewish genetic disorders and to help anyone affected and at risk to access the best information, services and support available.  For funding they rely entirely on voluntary donations and fundraising activities and any donation you make will count.

Hand-in-Hand -

The Hand-in-Hand Schools in Israel work towards building inclusion and equality between Arab and Jewish citizens of Israel through a growing network of bilingual, integrated schools and communities. Launched in 1997 with 50 children, Hand-in-Hand now has over 2,000 students in seven schools from Jerusalem to the Galilee and is supported by 3,000 active adult community members, who impact over 10,000 Jewish and Arab citizens. In their bilingual educational model, Hebrew and Arabic have equal status, as do both cultures and national narratives. Hand-in-Hand was established to combat one of Israel’s greatest existential threats: the growing social alienation and lack of trust between Jewish and Arab citizens of Israel.  The schools are government funded but need donations for specialized bilingual, multicultural curriculum and community activities to help fund the 1,200 students currently on their waiting lists.

We know that we are a caring community.  We appeal to you at this time to give as generously as you can to support the work of Hand-in-Hand, Jnetics and our own ‘Together we’ll stay connected’ appeal.  Our hope is that every member will take the opportunity to contribute something as their personal act of tzedakah at this time and we welcome each and every contribution whatever the amount.

Please do help us with your donation, whether it is small or large.  To make your donation please either call the synagogue office where payments by card will be taken or alternatively you can make payment directly to us via your bank account using the following details:

Account Name: South West Essex & Settlement Reform Synagogue

A/C No.: 00126324                 Sort Code: 30-90-47

Please use your name along with HHD2021 as a reference.

If you are a UK taxpayer you might like to consider making the payment by Gift Aid. It will not cost you anymore but, provided you have paid at least 25% of the donation in income tax, the Synagogue will receive a tax refund representing 25% of your donation from HMRC.

On behalf of Officers, Council and staff, we take this opportunity to wish all of our members a very Happy, Healthy and Peaceful New Year and we give our thanks for any donation you are able to make.