140 financial members
30 attendees at Yiddish speaking programs each month
Programs and events to promote and preserve Yiddish and Hebrew language and culture. A social centre for Israelis to connect and celebrate Israeli culture and traditions.
The Jewish Folk Centre predominantly serves the Israeli migrant community, providing a social hub where Israelis can come together, feel connected to Israel and speak Hebrew, while also feeling part of the Sydney Jewish community. They gather for chagim and celebrate Israeli holidays like Yom Ha’atzmaut and commemorate Yom HaZikaron. The second night communal Pesach seder is a highlight of the annual calendar as well as second night Rosh Hashana. For many Israelis, it has become a home away from home.
The Centre facilitates an array of activities that celebrate Israeli life including Hebrew literature and writing groups, Israeli dancing, a range of lectures in Hebrew and English, as well as outings to movies or cultural events.
The Jewish Folk Centre is an active contributor to the local community. Through funding from JCA, the Centre has collaborated with JewishCare to provide a purpose-built kitchen space for their Our Kitchen Hand program which teaches domestic skills to people with varying disability. The Centre also offers its space to other Jewish community organisations including CSG, for training and seminars.
True to their origins, the Centre still maintains a Yiddish language program each month where around 30 non-Israelis gather for a “Schmooze and Bagel”, speak Yiddish, listen to some music or even have someone perform in Yiddish. Co-President Miri Orden states, “The community might like to know that there is a place where Yiddish is thriving and continuing to exist, because if nobody would do it – it gives me goose pimples to think about it – it would just disappear into nothing. We keep it going. It’s important.”
Those in the community who are Yiddish or Hebrew speakers, seeking a cultural immersion, and Israeli migrants to Sydney looking for a home away from home.
Jewish Folk Centre
The Jewish Folk Centre started life around 70 years ago as the Yiddishe Folk Centre, founded by Holocaust survivors who wanted to keep the Yiddish language alive. Activities are offered to those Yiddish and Hebrew speaking members of the community who wish to immerse themselves in cultural activities and keep a traditional link to their roots.
Other programs offered by this provider
Yedion – by registration on the mailing list
Miri Orden and David Nathan
JewishCare with Our Kitchen Hand