Tomchei Golf Outing, Boy Pays It Forward

August 17, 2018

The Tomchei LA Golf Classic on July 30 at the Mountaingate Country Club raised about $250,000 for Tomchei Shabbos, an organization that provides food and services to Jews in need.

The event drew more than 150 people who golfed and enjoyed cocktails at the Brentwood club. And about 300
people attended a banquet that followed at Pat’s Restaurant on Pico Boulevard.

“We continue to see new faces and new sponsors participate,” said Tomchei Shabbos Executive Director Schneur Braunstein, who called the event a major success. “People keep coming back, and word has gotten around that this is the most fun charity event to attend.”

Tomchei Shabbos volunteers, supporters and leaders in attendance included Yosy Schames and Yosef Manela, its President Rabbi Yona Landau and Volunteer Director Steve Berger.

Founded in 1978, Tomchei Shabbos provides food on a weekly basis to Jewish people in need. Every Thursday evening, volunteers come together in a Pico Boulevard warehouse to pack food and deliver it to those living in poverty. The organization also helps Jews without work find jobs, start businesses and earn livelihoods. 

Nearly 1,400 Jewish community members turned out for Dodgers Jewish Community Day on Aug. 5 at Dodger Stadium to watch the Blue Crew take on the Houston Astros, the team that defeated them in the 2017 World Series. The Dodgers beat the Astros, 3-2.

The Sunday afternoon ballgame at Chavez Ravine began with actor and singer Skylar Astin (“Pitch Perfect”) singing the national anthem.

Nearly 30 different groups of synagogues, summer camps and nonprofit organizations — including Congregation Kol Ami and NuRoots, an initiative of The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles for young adults — turned out. 

Attendees received a Dodgers Jewish Community Day T-shirt and kids under 14 received Junior Dodger backpacks. 

Hundreds of teens participating in the JCC Maccabi Games, held this year in Orange County from Aug. 5-10, took a break from the event’s athletic competitions and came together to make sandwiches for the homeless. 

The Alpert JCC of Long Beach and the Merage JCC of Orange County organized the Aug. 6 event at Westerly School in Long Beach, in partnership with Love in the Mirror, an organization that cultivates youth-led, service-focused initiatives.

Jonas Corona, who founded Love in the Mirror in 2009 when he was 6 years old, led the teens in the sandwich making. Throughout the year, Corona leads elementary and middle school children at the Alpert JCC in creating and delivering food and hygiene packages to vulnerable populations across Greater Los Angeles.

The JCC Maccabi Games, led by the JCC Association of North America, bridges Jewish communities, fosters athletic competition and offers social programming with an emphasis on volunteering. More than 3,000 Jewish teens from around the world took part in the Olympic-style event, now in its 36th year.

The American Israel Gap Year Association (AIGYA) has announced a new scholarship that will enable deserving students to spend a year in Israel after graduating high school.

“This year, we are extremely proud to announce the establishment of the Rosina Korda Gap Year Scholarship exclusively for AIGYA Fair attendees,” AIGYA Founder and Executive Director Phyllis Folb said in a statement. “Mrs. Korda was a child of Holocaust survivors, an accomplished school psychologist, loving wife and mother, and a pillar of the Los Angeles Jewish community. This scholarship reflects Rosina’s deep love of Judaism and connection to Israel.”

The gift in Korda’s name — donated by her husband and sons — is for three $3,000 scholarships and will be awarded to students planning to attend programs at the 2018 AIGYA Gap Year Fair on Nov. 15 at YULA Girls High School.

Students from Southern and Northern California, Seattle, Phoenix and Las Vegas attend the annual fair, which self-describes as the “largest [event of its kind] in the West and the only cross-denominational Israel Gap Year Fair in the United States.”

The sons of Korda and her husband, Robert Korda, spent a combined seven years in Israel after high school.

 “She would be so proud that a scholarship in her name would be used to encourage students to go on a gap year in Israel,” Robert said in a statement.

A gap year refers to the year between the completion of high school and the start of freshman year in college. Many Orthodox high school graduates spend a year studying in Israel before beginning college in the U.S.

Born two months premature at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Josh Klein weighed only 3 pounds, 11 ounces and was treated at the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for over a month. His mother, Wendy Moss-Klein, had toxemia, a blood poisoning caused by toxins from a local bacterial infection. 

For his bar mitzvah project this month, Josh, who turns 13 on Aug. 24, decided to repay Cedars-Sinai for the care he received as a newborn. He collected donations of more than 1,000 new baby items from family and friends, including onesies, bibs and handmade blankets. On July 24, he visited the neonatal unit loaded with 16 large garment bags and made the rounds with a red wagon, distributing some of the items to families whose children were being treated there. He left the remaining items for families and their babies yet to come.

A young mom thanked Josh and wiped away tears as she shared her baby’s story with him. Josh also gave a gift to a new dad whose baby was born just an hour earlier.

Josh’s family also donated $1,000 to Cedars-Sinai in honor of his bar mitzvah.

“This project was close to my heart,” Josh said.

After he distributed the items, Cedars-Sinai held a birthday party for Josh that was attended by nurses who cared for him as a newborn. 

Moss-Klein said her family owes so much to the hospital. “We don’t know where we would have been without them,” she said.

Josh became a bar mitzvah at Wilshire Boulevard Temple on Aug. 11.  

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