More than 1000 people attended a northern Sydney Israel solidarity barbecue at Masada College in St Ives on the evening of Sunday, November 5, to raise funds for UIA Australia’s Israel Appeal, and to come together with dignitaries and local councillors to show support for the State of Israel and its people.
Despite some heavy rain at times, it did not deter the massive turnout at the event, which was a powerful and heartening expression of the northside’s Jewish community uniting in harmony, in these testing times for the Jewish state.
UIA Australia CEO Yair Miller said, “I think the community was in need of something exactly like this event, and it was fascinating for me to see so many people there, [including some] who are never seen at any communal events.”
The event’s partners included all northern Sydney synagogues, both Modern Orthodox and Progressive.
They included North Shore Synagogue, Chabad North Shore, North Shore Temple Emanuel, Kehillat Masada, Cremorne Synagogue, Ohr HaTzafon, NSW BJE, UIA Australia, Maccabi NSW and HaTzofim (Israeli Scouts).
Masada College’s Jewish life leaders, Danya Lewin and Jared Horak, came up with the idea for the community barbecue, less than two weeks prior, as an effective way to bring everyone together in a positive way, and both were very impressed by the numbers in attendance.
“We wanted to bring the entire North Shore Jewish community together to unite with Israel and raise funds for the UIA,” Horak said.
“We are so grateful to have raised over $12,000, and we thank the entire community for their incredible support.”
Attendees included Bradfield MP Paul Fletcher, Davidson MP Matt Cross, Ku-ring-gai mayor Sam Ngai, and councillors Catherine Kay, Barbara Ward and Simon Lennon.
In his opening remarks, Fletcher reaffirmed the federal Coalition’s unwavering support of Israel and the Jewish community.
Masada College principal Raquel Charet thanked the community for its support of the event, and all event partners.
“Because when we are together, in the face of antisemitism, we are strong, and we are safe, in our strength,” Charet said.
“Strength of common culture, common heritage, common history, common tradition and community.
“It is our unity that keeps us strong”.