What One Mother Can Do – With a Little Help From Her Community

From the NY Daily News:

 

Victims of domestic violence, sex assaults will share in Passover Seder holy dinner in Brooklyn

  

BY Simone Weichselbaum
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER

Sunday, April 17th 2011

The Passover spirit of freedom has a whole new meaning for crime victims putting together a special Seder where they will share stories about abuse, during the holy dinner.

Survivors of domestic violence, sex assaults and child abuse will pack into the B’nai Israel of Linden Heights synagogue on Ninth Ave. in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn Monday and Tuesday night.

Passover honors the Israelite slaves’ escape from Egypt with a 15-step meal called a Seder where stories of bondage are mixed in with the matzo.

Organizer Annie Kay, 33, spent the past month preparing to feed 500 victims and their families, explaining that the horror of living through a crime is no different than the nightmare of being a slave. “They need a family. The rabbis want to keep it so it looks like crimes in our community don’t happen,” said Kay, a Hasidic Jew who changed her name after launching the Coalition Against Legal Abuse in New York back in February.

The Jewish law of mesira prohibits a Jew from snitching to cops on another Jew but some rabbis give a pass depending on the crime. Still, if a victim comes forward in one of the city’s insular Orthodox Jewish communities, families are usually shunned at schools, synagogues and work.

A Borough Park woman named Chaya, 22, said her dad used to beat her with metal coat hangers when she was a kid. “I have a feeling for people hurt by abuse,” said Chaya, who spent the week peeling potatoes in preparation for the two big meals. “I want to help others have a comfortable life.”

So far, 386 cooked chickens are sitting in fridges along with 14 pounds of coleslaw and 50 pounds of gefilte fish. “It doesn’t matter how many people will come. We will feed everybody,” said Kay. “We want more people to feel empowered to speak out.”

Food Preparations for Freedom Seder Yields Healing to Salvation for Survivors

The Freedom Seder for survivors of abuse, is the brainchild of the Voices of Justice, and has taken off with an emotional and overwhelming response. Donations for food, and donations for money from all over America are simply awe inspiring. During this season of Galus-to-Geulah (from captivity to salvation), survivors have joined together and bonded over the preparations, which continue to be gargantuan.

As the potatoes were peeled and the onions were chopped, emotions of long suppressed feelings of shame, anger, and abandonment by loved ones and the community resurfaced, but in a new healthy way. As the kugels were baking and the horseradish was flavored, the friendships and feelings of acceptance have taken root.

This event would not have been possible if Sherree wouldn’t have offered her magnificent commercial-sized kitchen in Lawrence. With enough room for everyone to command their own counter space, and an unlimited variety of kosher for Passover equipment and paraphernalia, this preparation is a pure culinary treat.

Along with the therapeutic properties of interpersonal connections and validations, this first annual event has blossomed into something larger than life.

The time has come for survivors to support each other.

A special Yasher Koach to Bina who arranged a carpool for the volunteers, and for Rivkie who offered to tackle the 6 cases of chicken, with a smile! Yasher Koach to Yanky and Motty, for peeling and chopping vegetables, that took two van-rides to get to Lawrence! Yasher koach to Annie for making pan after pan of kugel and stuff. Yasher koach Shmuel for schlepping and driving, smiling and patiently waiting.

What a zechus!

If anyone is available to come today to Lawrence and help with the last batch of cooking, please call 1-800-958-2904 to let us know that you are coming.

Thank you!

Press Release – Meir Dascalowtiz Statement from the Voice of Justice In Defense of Abused Children

 

Posted by Voice of Justice

 

Statement from the Voice of Justice In Defense of Abused Children

 

 CONTACT:         MARK M. APPEL       (917) 804-3942 cell

FOR PUBLIC RELEASE       Monday, February 21, 2011

On Wednesday, February 23, 2011, admitted serial child rapist, Meir Dascalowitz will appear in Kings County Supreme Court to plead to charges related to his many felony and misdemeanor sex crimes against children.

Click to download Press Release

Dascalowitz’s charges include criminal sex acts with a child under 14, sexual misconduct with a minor, and sexual abuse of a child under the age of 14, almost 100 felony sexual abuse charges in total.  Dascalowitz’s attorney is likely to have his client plead insanity.  In order for our community to be safe, we need to show the public and Judge Riviezzo that we will not tolerate these crimes against our children and that we believe perpetrators of these heinous sex crimes should be held accountable in a court of law.

At previous court appearances, Dascalowitz has managed to garner support from individuals who mock, intimate, and harrass Dascalowitz’s victims and witnesses outside the hearings.  The Voice of Justice is calling upon the Jewish community to gather in the courtroom on Wednesday February 23, 2011 at 9:00 AM to show support to victims of this dangerous admitted criminal, and their families.

To show your support of Dascalowitz’s victims, to demand justice, and to send a message that criminals who abuse children in the Jewish community deserve to and will be punished, please attend the Dascalowitz plea hearing below:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011
9:00 AM
Kings County Supreme Court
320 Jay Street
Brooklyn, NY
Judge Riviezzo