Letters – September 2022

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It was encouraging to see the topic of mental health and mental health illness being discussed openly in last month’s publication. For too long this topic has been largely ignored in our community as well as in most Jewish communities. While the  emergence of new community health centers is very encouraging, perhaps our synagogues can assist in tackling this complex issue.

Our synagogues can bring these topics into the open by creating opportunities for awareness, discussion, and networking. Mental health support networks are an essential way to keep families feeling less isolated and ostracized. Possible supports might include discussions and committees to organize help for those with depression and anxiety, a briut hanefesh (spiritual health) support group, and mental health awareness Shabbatons for teens.

As our community continues to address this very sensitive issue, lives will be enhanced and hopefully saved.

Maurice H.

Israeli Elections 

It was interesting to read the opinions of regular Israelis in regards to yet another election in the holy land (Israelis Head to the Polls – Again). I believe that returning to the polls for the fifth time in the last three and a half years is a lot even for a country as young and millennial as Israel, where people are aware that the Jewish State has grown and the challenges that await it are no longer those of thirty years ago. Hopefully, the next government will live up to a task that cannot be separated from the fundamental role of Judaism in the self-determination of the Jewish people in their land. 

Mike B.

Homeschooling 

As a homeschool parent, as I was very delighted to read last issue’s article titled, Homeschooling… Not Just for Financial Reasons. The biggest pro about homeschooling is the freedom it provides. You get to choose the schedule and style that is best for you, your child, and your family. I love being able to take an individualized approach with each child, according to the way he or she learns best.  

Homeschooled children have the opportunity to learn at their own pace. If a child needs extra help with reading, then you spend more time on it. I think it helps develop self-confidence in a way that doesn’t happen in a standard classroom. 

Linda  M.

Back-to-School 

Thanks for the back-to-school tips provided in the August issue (Back-to-School Tips – FOR PARENTS). I’m sure they will come in handy this coming school year.

One topic that was not discussed was what to do if your child is getting teased or bullied. From my own childhood experiences, it is important to teach our kids the proper way to deal with bullies, by reporting them to either a teacher or principal. Make sure they understand the right way to treat their peers, and when to speak up, if they see someone else being bullied. Tell your children to come to you immediately if they feel they are being threatened or picked on.

Alice D.

Woman to Woman

Dear Ellen,  

Thank you so much for the beautiful recap of your last five years of “Woman to Woman” articles that you wrote for Community Magazine.   One of the best parts of doing my interview was getting to meet you, Ellen.  We really do have to get together again at some time “over coffee.”

There are so many worthy, unrecognized women in our community, including you. We should write an article about how Ellen Kamaras is an inspiration for future writers and doers in our community. 

Thank you again for your beautiful words. You are too generous!

Gloria Bijou