The Jewish Community Relations Council/AJC stands in solidarity and partnership with the African American community, decrying the horrific murder of George Floyd and the racism that tragically still engulfs our nation and even permeates so many of our police forces. We pledge to work with the religious, civic and political leaders in the African American community who are working to bring a peaceful, but forceful, message of protest, truth and hope, not only in their own community, but to all Americans. There is no place for racism, discrimination, antisemitism or hatred in our country. George Floyd’s death, and the unjust deaths of so many other African Americans, tell us that racism still exists, but we know that if we work together, in peaceful, even loving protest, we will overcome and will prevail. We are all choked by racism, we all cannot breathe with racist hate, and we will never stop until it is eliminated from our society.
December 5, 2019 – Jewish Community Relations Council/AJC (JCRC/AJC) will host its 23rd Annual Mitzvah Day this Christmas, Wednesday, December 25, at nonprofit organizations throughout Detroit and its surrounding communities. The daylong event is held in partnership with the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit.
Beginning as early as 6:30 a.m., more than 600 volunteers of all ages and faiths, including Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Christian, are expected to visit nearly 40 locations to work on social service projects ranging from meal and toy delivery to visiting with older adults and taking care of animals. Volunteers have several weeks to pre-register for a specific site, such as Brilliant Detroit, Mariners Inn, Capuchin Soup Kitchen and Cass Community Social Services.
Mitzvah Day, which is the single largest day of volunteering by Detroit’s Jewish community, was founded in 1996 by JCRC in order to fill staff shortages or to allow organizations to reduce staffing on Christmas Day. The word “mitzvah” is Hebrew for “commandement,” and commonly refers to performing a good deed.
“Mitzvah Day is special to so many people because it focuses on the common value of giving of yourself in service to others,” said JCRC/AJC Executive Director Rabbi Asher Lopatin. “It’s beautiful seeing so many people from such diverse backgrounds and ages come together for a good cause. It creates such an incredible sense of light, warmth and togetherness.”
Site registration is available through December 20 at www.mitzvahdaydetroit2019.eventbrite.com. Volunteers under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, contact Sandy Lippitt at 248-642-2649 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
JCRC/AJC’s mission is to represent the metropolitan Detroit Jewish community, Israel and Jews throughout the world to the general community, and to establish collaborative relationships with other ethnic, racial, civic and religious groups. JCRC/AJC educates and advocates on important issues, seeking consensus with a commitment to Jewish values. For more information visit www.jcrcajc.org.
April 19, 2018 – The Jewish Community Relations Council/AJC and Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit praise the Michigan State Legislature for its passage today of resolutions celebrating 70 years since the establishment of the State of Israel.
Senate Resolution 154, sponsored by Senator Arlan Meekhof, and House Resolution 308, sponsored by Representative Robert Wittenberg, passed today …with bipartisan support. The resolutions celebrate Israel’s landmark anniversary and reaffirm the many vibrant ties that link Michigan and Israel.
“On behalf of the Detroit Jewish Federation, I would like to express our gratitude to Sen. Meekhof and Rep. Wittenberg, and all of the co-sponsors from the Michigan Senate and House, for their recognition of this historic occasion,” said Beverly Liss, President of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit. “We’re extremely proud of the strong, supportive bond between Israel and the state of Michigan, and we deeply appreciate our lawmakers’ ongoing commitment to this relationship.”
Alicia Chandler, President of Jewish Community Relations Council/AJC, remarked, “Israel’s 70th anniversary is a time to pause and reflect on the miracle that is the modern state of Israel. What was just a dream for millennia is now a complex, vibrant, thriving democracy which brings innovation and technology to the world. Each year is an opportunity to celebrate pluralistic and democratic values towards which Israel continues to strive.”
The metro Detroit Jewish community will honor this milestone anniversary for the Israel through a year-long Israel@70 campaign. In the coming months, there will be at least 70 programs honoring the occasion, ranging from small gatherings to major community-wide events.