from Tablet Magazine, 12/16 

 Shapers of New York…They don’t wait for someone else to come along and make change..

 

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from The New York Jewish Week, 6/29/15

 Post Obergefell v. Hodges, marchers express pride in their Jewish and LGBT identities.

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Making People’s Boundaries Wider: Discussion about Israel’s LGBTQ community comes to county

 from The The Jewish Week, 12/30/14

During the hour-plus session, the speakers, Shai Doitsh, chair of The Aguda, and Anat Nir, a board member, tackled such topics as the history of the LGBT community in Israel; the LGBTQ community’s legal rights; social services for at-risk youth including a shelter for LGQBT for youth who have run away from home; and how the community has successfully achieved its goals in the courts, including the right to serve in the Israel Defense Forces.“The story of The Aguda is the story of the nation,” said Doitsh. “We’re the only minority that has had success in Israel. We did it in the Israeli way, and now the world is copying our systems.”

Expanding the audience for this information was important, said Diane Werner, co-founder of Mosaic of Westchester.“At least half the audience was not gay,” she said. “We’re about bringing LGBT issues to the entire community. … This is a part of Israel that people don’t understand.”

As Joseph Cunin, New York area program manager for A Wider Bridge said, “We’re really going to be talking to people who don’t know about LGBTQ life. It’s a great way to reach beyond our core audience. This is also a way to show life in Israel in all its complexity.”

 

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New York’s Gay Pride Weekend Bigger — and Jewier — Than Ever

 from The The Jewish Daily Forward, 6/27/14

“While we’ve had great success in the United States, there are countries where we couldn’t live,” [Robert] Bank [AJWS executive vice-president] said, noting that the major achievements at home have led many in the LGBT community to turn their attention to LGBT issues abroad. AJWS is both fueling and capitalizing on this growing awareness. Last year, the organization brought an LGBT rights grantee from Uganda to join its delegation at Los Angeles Pride and this year has expanded its Pride month programming with Ken’s nationwide visits and by partnering with a number of local organizations.

One of them is the newly formed Mosaic of Westchester, located about an hour north of New York City, which is celebrating its first Pride after launching last July. Prior to Sunday’s parade, Mosaic will hold a Kick-Off Breakfast at 10 a.m. at the AJWS headquarters on 36th Street in Manhattan, where Ken will again be the guest of honor.

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Conference Works Toward LGBTQ Engagement

 from UJA Federation of New York 6/23/14

[a conference on community engagement] featured personal stories from people like Diane Werner. Werner knew her son Adam was gay as early as grade school, but he didn’t come out until he started college. “That’s seven years that Adam felt he had to actively hide who he was at his Jewish day school, at his camp, at our synagogue,” said Werner. “Watching this was heart-wrenching for my husband and me, but we didn’t encourage him to come out any sooner given the realities of our Jewish community.” Later, Adam and his younger brother, Evan, helped teach Evan’s frat brothers a lesson in acceptance that inspired their mother to found Mosaic of Westchester, an initiative to integrate LGBTQ Jews into Westchester Jewish life.

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Rainbow of Supporters Color Streets of New York City Sunday for Gay Pride Parade

 from The Pearl River Patch, 6/30/14

Locally, Mosaic of Westchester, a group whose mission is for the full integration of LGBTQ Jews into Westchester Jewish life, marched for the first time in Sunday’s parade.

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UJA Holds Its First LGBTQ Conference

 from The New York Jewish Week, 6/26/14

“I’ve turned gray waiting for UJA to make this conference,” said Shelly Weiss, a longtime LGBTQ activist. She was referring to UJA-Federation of New York’s first-ever conference focused on the Jewish gay, lesbian, transgender and queer community, which took place last month at the charity’s headquarters on East 59th Street.

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A New ‘Mosaic’ For Westchester

from The New York Jewish Week, 2/25/14

One of the issues that families confront is feeling isolated from their synagogue friends and others in the Jewish community. “Only one of my friends is in that situation,” said Dawn Dankner-Rosen, whose son is gay. “You feel very isolated. There’s nobody to share anything with. That’s why [Mosaic] is so wonderful. You need to have shared perspective and experiences. It’s a lifeline.”

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Mosaic of Westchester Fosters Inclusion

from Westchester Jewish Life, 2/2014, Vol. 19, Issue 2

According to Mosaic of Westchester Director, Bina Raskin, “Our work is guided by the conviction that our entire Jewish community is strengthened when we can all fully express who we are and still feel a vital part of the whole.  Our mission is to ensure that there is a toolbox of resources that LGBTQ individuals, families, allies, and Jewish organizations can readily access to help reach our vision of full integration and inclusion. In particular, we are working with Jewish institutions to help them take simple and concrete steps to become more inclusive and welcoming—such as changing their membership forms to include more inclusive language or placing a Mosaic support sticker on their web page.”

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