A year in review: The Zionist Council of Victoria’s 75th Annual Assembly

Submitted by the State Zionist Council of Victoria

The 2013 Annual Assembly is the culmination of an eventful year for the local Zionist community.

6 November 2013.

The Zionist Council of Victoria, its affiliates and members of the community will meet on 26 November for a special evening of celebration, reflection and discussion.

Code Red RallyIt has been a memorable year for the Zionist Council of Victoria. In support of Israel’s “Operation Pillar of Defence”, which aimed at halting the continuous barrage of rockets on Southern Israel, the ZCV together with other organisations led to a nationwide campaign of solidarity with Israel. The Code Red solidary rally was a key activity to advocate for Israel in our community.

The ZCV has widely engaged with the community, organising a diverse set of events and activities. From concerts and guest speakers to cultural events and clubs, the ZCV is committed to enriching the community’s exploration of expressions of Zionism.

A highlight of the year was the visit of Dr Ruth Calderon MK, a guest of the ZFA who was co-hosted in Melbourne by the ZCV. Dr Calderon, an inspiring female Talmudic scholar and member of Israeli Parliament gave a fascinating talk to the community at Caulfield Hebrew Congregation about connecting with a faraway homeland.

The annual celebrations of Yom Ha’atzmaut and Yom Yerushalayim, as well as the Yom Hazikaron commemoration, are the culmination of many creative minds, passionate contributors and an enthusiastic audience. This vibrant period is a highlight in the ZCV year and preparations are already underway for next year’s events.

The Lamm Jewish Library has evolved into a vibrant, modern hub of the Victorian community. The Library has welcomed the community at book clubs, film clubs, children’s programs and cultural events. In 2014, the Library will build on its wonderful activities with the inaugural Melbourne Jewish Writers’ Festival to be held on 31 May to 2 June. The exciting Festival will showcase well-established and emerging writers from Victoria, Australia and overseas.

HABAYITAn exciting new initiative of the World Zionist Organisation, run under the auspices of the Zionist Federation of Australia and supported by the Zionist Council of Victoria, Habayit Home of Hebrew and Israeli Culture has brought our community together for a series of unique Hebrew programs at the vibrant Lamm Jewish Library. From the successful Hebrew Over Lunch club and the long-standing and much loved Hebrew baby and toddlers’ story time to VCE study sessions, guest speakers and a new Hebrew school. Habayit has answered an important need for engagement with the Hebrew language in the Melbourne community.

The ZCV also initiates and leads engagement with our state politicians, including this year’s inaugural Yom Ha’atzmaut Israel exhibition at Parliament House.

Prior to departing on Aliyah, our Victorian Olim have been presented with a mezuzah at our Executive Meetings, a source of pride for our Victorian community.

A highlight of the Annual Assembly evening will be the keynote speaker and recipient of the Jerusalem Prize, The Honourable Julia Gillard, Prime Minister of Australia 2010-2013, in recognition of her outstanding contribution to strengthening Australia’s connection with Israel.  As a member of the Australian Parliament and as Australia’s first female Prime Minister, Ms Gillard demonstrated unwavering commitment to democratic values and ongoing support of the aspirations of Israel’s people for peace and security.

Volunteer award

The ZCV Community Volunteer Award is presented to a person who has shown ongoing commitment, loyalty and service to the Zionist Council. This year’s ZCV Volunteer Award recipient is Adam Starr who has assisted us with our cultural activities and has taken a leadership role as the Musical Director of Yom Ha’atzmaut for over 12 years. The award will acknowledge and recognise his sincere and demonstrated commitment to the ZCV, our community and Israel.

 

Code Red RallyZCV President Sam Tatarka reflects,“The Zionist Council of Victoria represents the interests of the local Zionist movement at state level and aims to engage our community on Israel and Zionist issues. We are privileged to lead Victorian Jewry in their connection with Israel through cultural activities, major events and educational initiatives. The Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut major events are attended by thousands of people, all made possible by the support of our affiliates, partners, sponsors and dedicated staff and volunteers.”

 “We are thrilled to welcome our keynote speaker The Hon. Julia Gillard at this year’s Annual Assembly and we look forward to honouring Ms Gillard with the local Zionist movement’s highest accolade, The Jerusalem Prize.” Tatarka added.

More than 400 people are expected to attend the Annual Assembly including representatives of the ZCV’s 53 affiliate organisations, local and state parliamentarians and key supporters of the roof body.

The community is invited. Bookings are essential at zcv@zcv.org.au or 03 9272 5544.

For more information please contact:

Lana Lachyani, Communications and Events Coordinator, Zionist Council of Victoria

T: (+613) 9272 5618 E: lana@zcv.org.au W: www.zcv.org.au

The ZCV 75th Annual Assembly will be held on Tuesday 26 November, 2013 at 8pm at Beth Weizmann Community Centre, 306 Hawthorn Road, Caulfield South. Bookings are essential at zcv@zcv.org.au or 03 9272 5544.

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