The Jewish Community of Korsun, Ukraine
Jeremy Borovitz will begin service with the Entwine Global Jewish Service Corps in Ukraine this fall. Jeremy is raising $10,000 to support the Jewish community in Korvun, Ukraine.
When I arrived in my Peace Corps placement in Ukraine, outside Kyiv, I was struck by the sense of isolation. There were flowing hills of grassy knolls rolling into each other for miles with only the horizon in site. The nearest “city,” 40 miles away, wasn’t really a city at all. It was a small town of 20,000 people called Zvenyhorodka, a place where the Friday market day still dominated the lifeblood of the town.
In 1993, there were as many as 10,000 Jews living in the 40 communities of this area. Today, through death and emigration to the U.S. and Israel, that number has decreased by over 80%. Not many are left. Yet during my two years of service in the region, the isolation I initially experienced disappeared when the small Jewish community in my immediate area welcomed me to their synagogue and into their homes. On Simchat Torah, I joined 150 people from 7 communities who got together to dance with Torahs around the last remaining pre-war synagogue in the region, in Zvenyhorodka.
The Regional Association of small Jewish communities, based in Korsun, supports the Jews of the surrounding towns and villages. Once a month they gather the entire community together, for a Sunday School, for a Passover Seder, or to dance around the synagogue on Simchat Torah. However, due to budget cuts, the community fears they will not be able to continue these meetings in the year to come.
I ask you to join me in supporting these Ukrainian Jews to live Jewish lives. In a community where the average salary is $200 a month, the struggle to survive is tough enough. But it is not enough to have food in your bellies. We need to nourish the soul as well. The Jews of these small communities need $10,000 to keep their organization working. Its not a lot of money, but ie means a lot to them. Will you help me raise a minimum of $10,000 to support them in the coming year. Please join me by contributing below and stand with me and the Jews of Korsun.
Photos courtesty of Jeremy Borovitz.