The Community Relations Committee engages the Jewish and non-Jewish community to create an environment of interfaith understanding, advocates for the Jewish State of Israel, and fights antisemitism through educational programming.
Through educational and community initiatives, the CRC works to connect and support the greater South Bend-Mishawaka community. Past partnerships have included.
- ADL and the Indianapolis JCRC on Hate Crime Legislation
- Books for Youth Educational Initiative
- Facilitating Community Leadership Missions to Israel
- Support of community celebrations such as Martin Luther King Jr events
- Co-sponsoring programming and engagement opportunities at the University of Notre Dame
The CRC provides resources to educate and confront antisemitism in a productive and impactful manner. In addition to using Holocaust and Israel education to preemptively combat misinformation and stereotypes related to the culture and history of the Jewish community, the Jewish Federation offers assistance in the event of local incidents of antisemitism as well as cultural conflict. The Federation and CRC have experience dealing with issues such as:
- Antisemitic focused bullying in schools and universities
- Lack of separation of church and state in public institutions
- Working with individuals who are being denied accommodations for religious observances in public institutions, such as educational settings
- Institutional or governmental misinformation in relation to Jewish identity and issues, such as in educational curriculum
- Helping connect our community with representatives from the Anti-Defamation League for additional support and access to educational tools
- Work with IJCRC on focused legislation such as the passing of the Hate Crimes Bills.
Although the Jewish Federation’s focus is often within the Jewish community, interfaith dialogue and programming is a large portion of the CRC’s focus. In addition to educating the non-Jewish community regarding the Jewish experience and culture, we seek to build strong and diverse relations with the belief that the Michiana community is improved by the diversity and mutual respect of all its residents. In addition to hosting interfaith programming, the Jewish Federation and CRC are proud to have sponsored many multi-faith programs in our community.
Programs we have hosted and supported include:
- Hate Crimes 101: A presentation by the Anti-Defamation League
- A presentation by The Multi-faith Alliance for Syrian Refugees, sponsored by multiple local agencies and organizations
- Hosting the program Getting to Know Your Neighbors: The Sikh Community of St. Joseph Valley
- Cosponsoring a local Interfaith Prayer Service in Support of Migrants, Immigrants, and Refugees
- Initiated outreach to the local Iraqi Refugee community to aid in their social integration.