SCoJeC has been awarded Scottish Government funding for the next three years for our “Empowering and Connecting Communities” project. This continues the funding we have received since 2008 from the Race, Religion, and Refugee Integration Fund, which has now been subsumed into the new Equality Fund.
The grant will enable SCoJeC to continue to produce MEMO, a weekly digest of information of relevance to ethnic minority communities, which is published jointly with BEMIS, the ethnic minority umbrella organisation. This is circulated by BEMIS and SCoJeC to more than 2500 people each week, who then cascade it to their colleagues; and it also receives around 3000 hits in an average month on the SCoJeC website. One recipient recently wrote, "[I] wanted to let you know what a valuable and useful collection of information it is"; another, “MEMO is the very best thing to give an overview of the area and keep up-to-date with what's going on. I myself find all of it invaluable".
The second strand of the grant is for SCoJeC’s own outreach work to support the smaller Jewish communities, and isolated individuals outwith them, as well as to provide information to Government, public authorities, faith groups, the media, and others, about Judaism, the Jewish Community, and its concerns. Major successes have been hosting the Jewish Way of Life teaching resource on our website, and the “Kosher Ceilidh” tour of Scotland, and we have also supported events in the Aberdeen, Dundee, and Edinburgh Liberal communities, as well as Jewish student activities in several locations. Our current “Being Jewish in Scotland” project, funded by a different Scottish Government grant, has shown the importance of these activities, with respondents noting the need for “more activities for Jewish people to meet and get to know each other”, and another writing that “activities are important in sustaining identity and maintaining communal involvement.”
SCoJeC Director Ephraim Borowski said: "We are delighted that the Scottish Government has again recognised the value of our work both within and on behalf of the Jewish Community, and has maintained its support at a time of financial constraint. This shows the trust that SCoJeC has earned by consistently delivering on our commitments, and provides us with a measure of financial stability for the next three years which we hope will enable us to develop and increase our work to support vulnerable members of our community.”