This calendar earned its dates with destiny. The 2004-2005 calendar of the Jewish Community Library of Los Angeles won a spot in the American Library Association's "Best of Show" for library PR at the organization's annual conference June 26 in Chicago. The Family Calendar of events for 2004-2005 -- the colorful oversized glossy brochure with children skimming the globe on the wings of open books -- included highlights from the library's packed calendar, such as events for kids at the library and elsewhere, as well as lectures for adults and cultural programs. The library, part of the Jewish Federation's Bureau of Jewish Education of Los Angeles, is one of the largest public Jewish libraries in the country.
For information on the Jewish Community Library of Los Angeles, located in the Federation building at 6505 Wilshire Blvd., visit www.jclla.org or call (323) 761-8644. For information on the American Library Association, visit www.ala.org.
With more than 50 supporters in attendance, Rabbi Shawn Fields-Meyer received the inaugural award for Creative Jewish Education from the Mintz Family Foundation at an emotional reception May 27. Fields-Meyer was honored with the $5,000 award for her work in founding Ozreinu, a spiritual support group for parents of children with special needs.
Ozreinu's monthly meetings involve personal reflections on selected Torah texts as they relate to the challenges of having a child with special needs. There are four groups in Los Angeles; and groups are forming in other cities across the country.
The Mintz Family Foundation for Creative Jewish Education was established in 2001 to recognize and reward innovative individuals and organizations in Jewish education across North America.
Road Trip for Darfur
After returning energized from a spring break mission to El Salvador with the American Jewish World Service, four students from the Claremont McKenna College Hillel organized a 10-day "Road Trip for Darfur" in May.
Talia Kahn, Betsy Marder, Melinda Koster and Daniela Urban, along with classmate Candice Camargo, traveled from San Diego to Davis and back, speaking at high schools, synagogues and local shopping centers in 14 different California cities.
"To say the least, we felt frustrated by the tragedies occurring in a nation halfway around the world," Kahn said, "and we decided the road trip was the best way to approach the crisis in Darfur, by helping raise the level of awareness."
For information on the American Jewish World Service, visit www.ajws.org. For information on Claremont Hillel, visit www.claremonthillel.org.
Conejo's First Class
Twelve sixth-graders became the first graduating class at the Conejo Jewish Day School at a commencement ceremony June 8. Many of the students are children of the group of parents who founded the school four years ago to service the burgeoning traditional population in the area. Principal Rabbi David Lamm and dean Rabbi Moshe Bryski, along with school board president Leora Langberg, addressed the graduates.
For more information on the school call (818) 879-8255 or visit www.cjds613.com.
Best Tzedaka Goes To ...
Dozens of second-graders piled out of limousines and onto the red carpet for Kadima Hebrew Academy's Oscar night June 9. But rather than a prize for Best Picture, these kids were looking forward to awards like Best Listener, Most Respectful, and Great Friend.
Seated at formal tables and dressed in black ties and pink puffy dresses, each second-grader received an Oscar for the value he or she best exemplifies. The teachers interviewed each child for a video presented at the event and related anecdotes the parents supplied.
For more information about Kadima, visit www.kadimaacademy.org, or call (818) 346-0849.
Teens' Words Fight Hate
Four college-bound Los Angeles County high school seniors received scholarships from the Anti-Defamation League for their essays on how students can best recognize and combat racism, anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry among peers. The theme for this year's Cecilia and Alfred Katz Human Relations Essay was "No Place for Hate."
Ronit Mukerji of Redondo Beach, a student at Redondo Union High School, is the first-place winner, receiving a $1,000 scholarship. Those receiving honorable mention and $100 scholarships are Tulani Watkins of Carson, King/Drew Magnet High School; Mamta Patel of Tujunga, Verdugo Hills High School; and Shirley Eshaghian of Encino, Cleveland High School.
For information call (310) 446-8000 or visit www.adl.org.
You can reach Julie Gruenbaum Fax at firstname.lastname@example.org or (213) 368-1661, ext. 206.