by Debbie Cosgrove
Shavuot celebrates the gift of the Torah at Mt. Sinai, handed from God to the children of Israel. And we are to understand that each of us was present at revelation, each of us received the Torah. For this reason alone, the grant from JWFNY to Hillel International could not be more timely and appropriate. Yavilah McCoy, who identifies as a black, Orthodox, Jewish woman will bring her program– Intersection of Judaism, Gender, and Race to college campuses in the five boroughs. Her workshops will help all types of Jewish students see Hillel as a safe space for them to explore how their Judaism, gender, and race interweave and influence who they are. It will also portray the spectrum of identification of members of the Jewish community on campus. Hillel will focus on ongoing training and mentorship that ensures Hillel professionals and students are prepared to address the current climate on campus and the broader issues of cultural competency, diversity, and inclusion. Campus life is hard and Hillel needs to be a place of comfort and connection, always building a sense of community. This grant insures that all Jews feel represented and included—just like we did at revelation. Chag Sameach.