A sense of community

Bonny’s Beat

By Bonny Feldman, Managing Editor Cape Jewish Chronicle

My family recently had quite a traumatic experience when Rex, our family pet, a large cross-breed dog, escaped from our home and went missing for about 28 hours. 

While we experienced a great deal of anxiety, worrying about where he might be and whether he would be found alive, the event also demonstrated the concept of community. 

One may live one’s life quite independently, going through the routine of daily life on one’s own — and that may be absolutely fine. But, at a time of crisis, this independence may result in loneliness and a feeling of desperation from carrying such a burden.

But, during our lost dog episode, this did not happen at all. Once the message spread about a missing pet — and went far and wide via social media — we were inundated with offers of support from many people, most of whom were complete strangers to us. Yet these incredibly kind souls gave of themselves and their time, spending hours driving around the Atlantic suburbs and walking around the area in case they spotted Rex.

What a wonderful way to learn about the concept of community. Being aware that other people care and want to help is so important. You reaslise that you’re not on your own. In the process, you also meet people you may never otherwise have encountered — people with different life experiences, from different cultures and backgrounds. And this can be so rewarding. 

Talking about community, it’s fascinating to see the growing Jewish community in Berlin. Who would have thought that a destination at the heart of Nazism in the 1930s and 1940s would have moved so far 80 years later?

You’ll see a number of references to Berlin’s current Jewish community in this issue of the Chronicle — in the story about the largest mezuzah in the world, in Daniel Bloch’s report about his recent trip to the city, and in the article about the launch of Egonne Roth’s book

As for August being Women’s Month, we’re thrilled to bring you good news stories about women challenging societal limitations by establishing successful businesses of their own — all with the support of ORT Jet Cape Town. Read their inspiring tales on pages 16 (here) and 17 (here).

We’ve also managed to tap into the brain of local doctor, Lauren Lee — a successful business-owner herself — to share important news about women’s health. Read and take heed of the advice offered on page 21 (here).

Our August issue covers a wide range of topics so we’re sure there’s something in it for everyone. Here’s hoping you enjoy it and that you find it thought-provoking!

• Published in the August 2023 issue – Click here to start reading.

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