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JCC State of Mind: A weekly message to staff, board, and stakeholders

December 22, 2023 When I think about the JCC’s approach to community, I often come back to the Jewish practice of requiring a minyan – a group of 10 – for daily prayer and certain religious rituals. A minyan fosters a sense of unity among the participants and symbolizes the collective strength and interconnectedness of the community. The bonds formed within a minyan contribute to the larger tapestry of Jewish communal life. Nearly …

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JCC State of Mind – December 29, 2023

At the age of 16, I was hired for an amazing job. That job – titled “camp counselor” – is still, to this day, the best job I’ve ever had. It offered me invaluable skill-building such as leadership, responsibility and problem solving. More importantly, it’s where I discovered a sense of purpose, meaningful work, confidence and developed an affinity for working with children, young adults …

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An Unprecedented Year

I distinctly remember two phone calls my wife and I received shortly before 10 a.m. that day. “Are you in shul? The street is blocked by police cars,” the congregant inquired. We replied that we were out of town and not at synagogue. A minute later the phone rang again. It was Sam Schachner, president of Tree of Life, who informed us of an active …

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Practice Good Sleep!

Sleep is as important to our health as eating, drinking and breathing. Maggie Feinstein, LPC, Director of the the 10.27 Healing Partnership, Pittsburgh’s new resiliency center, recently shared some tips for getting a good sleep: Good sleep often takes practice.  In times when sleep is not going well, it is important to practice a new hygiene routine. Go to bed at the same time each night …

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7 Things for Kids and Families to do at the JCC

To be honest, there are many, many more things for kids of all ages to do at the JCC! We just wanted to highlight a few things you may not have known.* Most important: We want you to come here and HAVE FUN!!!   Our South Hills branch offers its own brand of fun in its swimming pool, multiple outdoor playgrounds, gymnasium, access to hiking trails in …

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Jason’s Journey: Overweight and Overcoming It!

Absolutely Losing It (part one) - September 9, 2019 CHAPTER 1: The 5 Do’s of My Diet - June 20, 2019 Ideas for a title for the series: Thriving…Not Just Surviving I’m Absolutely Losing It Werking It & Working Out (my favorite) I have never had a super healthy relationship with food. I say never, and I pretty much mean never. I have definitely gotten better over the years, but …

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A Community Conversation on Teen Mental Health

According to a recent report released by the American Psychological Association, mental health issues among young adults have risen significantly over the last decade and social media may be one reason why. The research shows a sharp increase in negative psychological symptoms for young adults born in 1995 or later, otherwise known as iGen. The spike in symptoms occurred in 2011, concurrent with the timing of …

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A Purim Message For Today

Bigotry, hatred and racism of all forms is wrong no matter what continent it occurs on and no matter the victims it claims. The Jewish community has known this for thousands of years.  After all, this week we are celebrating the victory of the Jewish community of Persia over the hatred state-sanctioned supremacy of its day.  When Queen Esther hesitated to stand up and call it …

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Staunton Farm Foundation Grant will Broaden Inclusion at JCC Camps

We are excited to announce that JCC camps, Emma Kaufmann Camp and James and Rachel Levinson Day Camp, received Beyond an Inclusion Policy: Ensuring Children and Adolescents Reach Their Developmental Potential, a $100,000 two-year grant from The Staunton Farm Foundation. Our overnight and day camps will utilize the grant to pilot an innovative community project to broaden inclusion at both camps, and also to define …

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This Chanukah, Celebrate the Community We Aspire to Build

Redefining neighbor from a geographic term to moral concept On Sunday night, members of the Jewish community around the world will begin our annual celebration of Chanukah.  It is the time honored commemoration of the victory of the Maccabees in the 2nd century BCE over the Assyrian Greeks and their allies who wanted to create a homogeneous cultural and religious community in which diversity was neither tolerated …

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