Community Meeting & Hanukkah Party

Date: 

December 13, 2017 - 7:00pm

Location: 

JTS, 3080 Broadway (corner of 122nd St), Unterberg Auditorium

Time: 7-9PM

Join us for a festive hanukkah celebration, catered dinner, and community discussion. You're welcome to bring a hanukiyah and candles, and we'll all light together.

Dinner costs $10 per adult (ages 12 and up). Kids are welcome, at no cost. 

Registration is now closed.


 

Community Meeting Notes

  • Leadership meeting (presented by Adin Nelson)
    • About a month ago we held a meeting of all of the team leaders who coordinate the many volunteer teams at KH, including Kiddish, Scotch, Shamashim, Outreach, Greeting, Communications, Technology, Shavuot, Hospitality, and Meals.
    • Planning to continue holding quarterly meetings as a group, as a way to strengthen communication between teams and find ways to support one another in our various roles.
  • Financial update (presented by Max Arad)
    • We raised $82,500 in our 5778 High Holiday campaign, which is the best we’ve done in about 6 years. Our projected expenses for the year are $91,500, and we project we’ll reach that through some campaigns before June.
    • We run a tight budget. The vast majority is operating expenses, and the biggest expense is $1320 for rent each week.
    • Our campaign goals this year were to increase programming in a number of areas. Because of the success of the campaign, we will be able to meet on more Shabbat mornings, and we raised the funds to do paid kids programming and to be able to pay to bring in speakers.
  • Board update (presented by Ashira Konigsburg)
    • On paper, Kehilat Hadar has had a board from our very early days, but if was never designed to be operational. There are even board members, technically, but they’re not people known to the community anymore.
    • This is not best practice from a legal or financial perspective, and so we’ve been working with pro-bono lawyers to revise the current bylaws and re-establish a real board. This time, though, we intend for it to be operational and to oversee the management of the minyan.
    • Having a board will enable that group of people to focus on the big picture strategic elements of helping KH grow and will allow the Steering Team to focus solely on day-to-day operational tasks.
    • There will be lots more information coming out about this in the next two months as we prepare to hold our first annual meeting at end of February. We will be sending out the draft bylaws for community review and comment in mid-January.
  • Gender-neutral aliyot (presented by Maddy Hoffman)
    • We want to strengthen how we think about and prioritize inclusion and further our egalitarian values as a community. We recognize that we have a lot of work to do in this area, and one particular piece we’re working on right now is enabling people to use gender-neutral language when having aliyot. This would be in the form of a third option, in addition to the existing options with male and female pronouns.
    • We consulted with other similarly-minded communities that have gender neutral aliyah policies, we spoke to KH community members with personal and professional experience in LGBTQ inclusion, and we coordinated with Rabbi Ethan Tucker, our halachic advisor, on the specifics of the language. We are now having conversations with the Shamashim about putting it into place.
    • We plan to share the policy plan for community review and comment. We’ll also be updating our aliyah cards to explain the options.
    • In addition, we are working with Shechter to have a bathroom available that is not gendered. If you have other thoughts or recommendations about how we can do make our spaces welcoming and inclusive, please let us know.
  • Outreach (presented by Jeremy Tabick)
    • If you’ve been at shul in the past few weeks, you may notice that our attendance numbers are a bit up. This is partly due to a renewed outreach effort that Jeremy Tabick and Haley Schulman have been doing. Their goal is to identify people in our orbit and to get them involved in KH in a more serious way.
    • The process so far has been identifying people to talk to and scheduling 1:1 meetings with them to talk about their thoughts on KH and work out where their interests are.
    • We have been asking members of the community to tell us who we should talk to, so if you have suggestions, please let us know!
    • Any community member who wants to talk to us and to help us, please reach out to the Outreach Team: Jeremy, Haley, Rae Logan, Ben Varon, and Zoe Grossman, or email welcome@kehilathadar.org.
  • Friday night davening (presented by Sarah Ebstein)
    • We love having Friday night davening, and there’s clearly an interest in this becoming a more regular part of our offerings. We’ve started holding davening in people’s apartments, since one of the barriers is financial.
    • Hilana Ezekiel has volunteered to help develop some processes around finding hosts and making it a more standard program. If you have an apartment or community room that you would be willing to offer for a Friday night, please let us know. We will also explore the possibility of getting donors for Friday nights at Schechter.
    • We do have a number of Friday nights planned for the early part of 2018, so keep an eye on emails and the website for those dates & locations.
  • Upcoming program on January 6
    • We are excited to host Rabbi Ethan Tucker for a Lunch and Learn on Saturday January 6. He’s one of the founding members of KH and Mechon Hadar, and he serves as our halakhic advisor.
    • Thanks to Emily Menchel and Jeremy Tabick for bringing this program to our attention and for making it happen. Emily and Meir Schecter will be sponsoring a kiddush lunch that day in honor of Emily’s father’s yartzeit.
  • Q and A Discussion
    • How can we empower people to learn what’s involved in volunteering without requiring that they email someone to learn more? Can we set up more self-service information on the website about what we’re looking for, to start the conversation? Yes, can do! Thanks for the feedback.
    • The details on the website about kiddush sponsorship are out of date. Can we explain what options are available for people who want to sponsor (or co-sponsor) but are not able to handle the food shopping? Yes, can do! Thanks for the feedback.
    • What are we doing to enable more people to learn how to lead davening or improve their skills? We are able to offer people with the opportunity to meet with someone to learn to lead davening, and we will make sure that more people know about that opportunity.

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