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From the Desk of Rabbi Moshe Wiener- Jewish Social Service Agency Brings Technology to Survivors and Other Seniors



On a chilly Sunday a week ago, a group of RAJE (Russian American Jewish Experience - members gathered in the majestic main sanctuary of the Jewish Center of Brighton Beach. Their mission was to launch the Connect2: Connecting Seniors program, which distributes Amazon Fire 10 tablets to Holocaust Survivors and other seniors and teaches them how to get online and use Zoom. The program is an exciting new collaboration between the Leader Family Fund and the Connect2 program of the Jewish Community Council of Greater Coney Island – JCCGCI


Elisheva Lock, MPA, LCSW, director at the Connect2 program said, “Jonathan and Dina Leader were very eager to help seniors and Holocaust survivors in our community who have been isolated and homebound due to the pandemic. To alleviate this isolation and loneliness, the Leaders shared their idea with me to design a program to provide and train seniors with tablets that can “connect” them to the outside world and to their friends and family." RAJE volunteers kicked off the first batch of deliveries and trainings, followed by other community volunteers who joined the cause. The seniors were delighted to be connected via Zoom to their families and to other members of the community.


RAJE volunteers shared that one Holocaust survivor, David Einhorn asked, “Do you mean you can show me how to find my favorite Rabbi speaking on here?” The volunteers then were able to provide a trial run for the rather excited survivor to share Rabbi Manis Friedman with them, and then to teach him how he can access Zoom and you tube on his own.


The seniors also appreciate that the community volunteers are not just giving their time to make sure the devices are set up properly, but also following a buddy system where the senior is left with the volunteer’s phone number to follow up with any questions or comments as they learn to use their device, or just to say hello. It is inspiring to see how quickly the survivors and seniors are learning. The day after she received her tablet, Ukrainian Holocaust survivor, Bella C. called and said, “It was amazing to figure out how to read all my all my morning’s Ukrainian and Fox news updates on my new Tablet, especially for a news junkie like me!” Bella continued to express her gratitude to the donors for the device, as well as to the kind volunteers who came to help.



Even more hopeful, is seeing the person-to-person connections being formed over Zoom programs. Survivors and seniors are joining women’s and men’s community zooms, as well as zoom gatherings and lectures, where they can form real bonds, see old friends, laugh and support one another. Some even report going to Synagogue services on their zoom!


Jonathan and Dina Leader of the Leader Family Fund


Jonathan and Dina Leader of the Leader Family Fund commented that "this is a perfect joint effort between a leading social service agency, volunteers, and a donor to bring the advantages of technology to alleviate the loneliness of elderly people." Twenty tablets have already been delivered with a target of delivering thirty more by Passover.


Sincerely yours,



Rabbi Moshe Wiener

Executive Director 


Connect2 survivor interviewed in Jewish Press


 I wanted to share an interesting and entertaining piece about Technology & Zoom with our survivors during the pandemic.


One of our Holocaust survivor clients plays the main role in the article.


*Note: You may need to enlarge the article by clicking clicking on the plus/ positive icon on the bottom of the document.


Article attached,



Our Story Told Through Music and Songs

2020-07-22 Dear Volunteers and Connect2 friends, Connect2, a program of the Jewish Community Council of Greater Coney Island, and NAHOS, The National Association of Children Holocaust survivors, are grateful to our dedicated friend Dina Leader who has joined forces with us to bring you a workshop on the history of Jewish Music and culture through stories and song. We will touch on some of the Russian Jewish history that may not be well known, as well as Jewish history and music in general until today. We hope you will not only enjoy it, but also that we will be able to come together in spirit, rather than physically during this time by singing and enjoying Jewish culture together! Please see the flyer below for details of the zoom link (on flyer itself), and/ or call- in number for our session!

A Chanukah “Day of Goodness” at RAJE




 A Chanukah “Day of Goodness” at RAJE: “Good things come in small packages”


We are excited that we just had our “Day of Goodness” on the first night of Chanukah at RAJE in Brighton Beach Brooklyn! We gathered together considerably early for a Sunday at 11am to have some donuts, and learn more about the volunteer work we were going to start off this special day with.


However, giving back to others wasn’t the whole purpose of the day. We also wanted to give to our own “neshama” (jewish soul), by learning more about Chanukah and experiencing it together. We were privileged to hear a shiur from Rabbi Shully Boteach, and light our menorahs together at RAJE headquarters as a community, or rather a Jewish family.



Yom Hashoah 2019 at The Moise Safra Center

2019-02-05 A gathering of Holocaust remembrance, unity, and Anni Maamin (the song of hope) By: Elisheva Lock MPA, LCSW Last night on the eve of Yom Hashoa, May 1 2019, three unrelated diverse Jewish organizations namely the beautiful Safra Center, The Jewish International Connection of New York (JICNY), and the Jewish Community Council of Greater Coney Island, JCCGCI, funded by the Conference on Material Claims Against Germany, had the pleasure of joining forces to promote Holocaust Remembrance and Jewish unity within the New York area.
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