Welcome to the Sisterhood's Biweekly Newsletter!
Our hearts break for the 10 individuals who never returned from grocery shopping last week in Buffalo, NY, and the 19 students and 2 teachers who never returned home from school yesterday in Uvalde, TX. Gun violence is preventable, which makes its proliferation all the more tragic and disturbing.
If you would like to support organizations working on gun reform initiatives, we suggest you learn more by visiting the following (non-exhaustive) list of sites:
The Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom is predicated on the belief that knowing someone who is different from you is the first step in eradicating the isolation and prejudice that can lead to hate and violence. In this moment, you might feel despair, but know this: We are not helpless. Reach out to your sisters for support, carry them in your heart, and know that your actions are an antidote to hate and an impetus for action. In a world of darkness, be a ripple of hope. We are stronger together.
Please read Samantha Facciolo's June 2018 reflection on gun violence and school shootings as an educator in The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Wishing you peace,
The Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom
We Want to Visit You!
We at the Central Office are hitting the road, visiting local chapters and regions and hearing from YOU, our members, about your dreams and hopes for and experiences with the Sisterhood. If you're having an upcoming chapter meeting or regional/community event, invite us to join you! Email [email protected] to learn more.
We are implementing an occasional series inviting our members to share a bit about themselves, their lives, and their connection to the Sisterhood. If you wish to tell your story for a future spotlight, please email [email protected].
Sadie Goldman is a graduating senior and member of our teen chapter in Phoenix/Scottsdale. She is also a member of the inaugural cohort of the Sisterhood's National Teen Leadership Board. Born and raised in Phoenix, Sadie identifies as a Reform Jew with Eastern European roots.
Sadie was invited to join her chapter by Drew, one of the co-leaders. She was drawn to the Sisterhood because she wanted to be involved not just in the Jewish community but to connect with different cultures and learn about both Muslim and Jewish sisters. She was inspired by the Sisterhood's mission to eradicate animosity and to "foster growth, connection, and communication."
One of Sadie's favorite Sisterhood memories is participating in the Raise Your Voice Labs song-making and music sessions. She said it was wonderful to collaborate with sisters from across the country and feels the song the group created beautifully sums up the Sisterhood's vision.
Thanks to her Sisterhood experiences, Sadie feels more confident having difficult conversations. She feels inspired to take action when challenges arise and cites the Sisterhood with strengthening her leadership skills.
In the fall, Sadie plans to attend the University of Arizona Honors College with a major in psychology and a minor in Spanish. We wish you the best of luck in this next step on your educational journey and thank you for the privilege of getting to know you these past several years!
By Roberta Elliott, Board President
In March 1938 when the Germans invaded Austria, my father was in his late 20s and in business with his father. Four months later, the entire family fled under the cover of night, but not before my father had arranged to hide all our family's treasures with an honest Austrian business colleague. Following the war, my father was a translator at the Nuremburg trials and, while in Germany for a year, arranged with his friend to retrieve the family possessions, including fine silver, crystal and glass, porcelain, art and Oriental rugs. Everything arrived at the port of Baltimore intact and unscathed.
Of our treasures, one stood out: a vase that my grandmother had purchased in 1914 that appeared that year in the Cologne Werkbund Exhibition. It is an exquisite example of glass from that period. A number of years ago, I gave it to the Corning Museum of Glass, the leading glass museum in the world. Last week, for the second time in four years, it was the centerpiece of a major exhibition, named “Past/Present,” that highlighted marginalized groups in society through glass as the storytelling medium: LGBTQ, women, Native Americans, refugees, etc.
My grandmother’s vase was twinned with a Kristallnacht piece in a section called “Resiliency,” the main characteristic attributed to refugees. Though rare and beautiful, the vase represents so much more, specifically the museum’s commitment to inclusivity and telling my family's story of surviving the Holocaust. This resolve is particularly significant in the Southern Tier of NY, where there is almost no organized Jewish community for the Holocaust story to be told. I'm so grateful to the museum for not shrinking away from this path and was thrilled to be present at the exhibit.
Westchester County Visits The Public Theatre
Recently, Westchester Chapter 4 visited The Public Theatre to see The Vagrant Trilogy, the story of Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon. The play revolves around themes of exile, family, and home and a protagonist who explores alternate realities to his own life. The chapter sisters enjoyed dinner and the show.
Have member news to share? Please email [email protected] with photos and updates!
Sisterhood Peace Walk
May 20-August 30, 2022
By popular request, we've extended the Peace Walk through the summer!
The story of the Sisterhood is the story of women standing together in solidarity. Muslim and Jewish women have united through the Sisterhood and found friendship, support, and strength in times of need. We joined together to protest the Muslim Ban in 2017, to show support after a rash of anti-Semitic acts in 2019 and to offer solidarity following the shootings at the Tree of Life synagogue in 2018 and the Christchurch mosque shootings in 2019. Each time, it was the sisters who were not targeted who turned to the other to say, "Let us carry your burden."
To us, the message is clear- in times of struggle, we turn to each other. To the public, the impact is clear- our actions make a difference. People pay attention when we act together.
Today, it feels as though the threats are many and the onslaught relentless. As members of the Sisterhood, you are not alone, nor are you helpless. You are among the radical peacemakers who bravely come together to stand as one. This work takes courage. We have done it before, and we can do it again.
We cannot solve international conflicts, but we can work towards peace and model to the world that Jewish and Muslim communities are stronger together.
Now through the end of August, we invite you to organize a Peace Walk with your fellow Sisters. Invite friends, family, and neighbors to join you and be the face of peace in your local community. Often, the idea of Muslim-Jewish partnership comes as a surprise to others, but your decision to build friendships with your fellow sisters is powerful. You have the power to transform minds. You can be the ripple effect of positive community change.
The Sisterhood exists to provide the foundation from which structures of peace can emerge and thrive. We help you build friendships, engage in dialogue, and provide a framework for peacebuilding. We need your support to sustain the infrastructure and resources that make our work possible. Here's how you can organize your Walk to promote peace and to support the Sisterhood.
Individuals and teams (groups) can sign up to become peace building champions for the Sisterhood. A team can be made up of a chapter, a group of members, or a few women from your local community. Create a Champion fundraising page and share it with family and friends!
Next, plan a walk in your community to get outside, enjoy the warm weather, and spend time with your sisters! Have a favorite park or walking trail? Perfect! Wish to host a picnic at the end of your walk? Great! Want to include children, spouses, or friends? They're welcome too! Wish you had some cool Sisterhood swag to wear during your walk? We've got you covered- visit our Online Store.
1. Register as an individual or team fundraising champion on our Sisterhood Peace Walk campaign page.
2. Share your personal/team fundraising (champion) page link with friends and family to raise money on behalf of the Sisterhood.
3. Choose a date and organize a walk with fellow sisters in your local community.
4. Purchase Sisterhood swag to sport on the day of your local walk!
5. Take photos and send them to [email protected] for sharing on social media!
6. Celebrate sisterhood!
7. Don't wish to create your own fundraising page? Use the Donate Now button to directly support our work.
Questions? Email [email protected].
Thank you for participating in this important fundraising and community-building event!
Exploration and Healing with Art
June 9, 16, 23, 2022
7:00-8:30 p.m. ET
Join the Sisterhood for a series of three workshops focused on using art as a tool of self-reflection and healing. Artist Tremain Smith will guide participants through exercises using water-based mediums and the combination of shapes, lines, and colors. You can register for one, two, or all three sessions. No experience required. A supplies list will be provided and will need to be purchased ahead of time. Tickets for these sessions are VERY limited. We recommend securing tickets sooner rather than later to ensure you can join fellow Muslim and Jewish sisters in this unique, interfaith, and multicultural visual art experience!
Identity Exploration Series: Judaism
June 22, 2022
7:00-8:30 p.m. ET
There are multiple branches of Judaism and Islam, and Muslim and Jews around the world have different levels of observance and varied practices. Each of us defines our relationship to our faith tradition in own own way, ranging from traditional observance to more liberal or adapted observance or through cultural associations.
Join us as we learn from women representing five different perspectives on Judaism. We invite you to explore your own identity story and how it has been shaped by your life experience, culture, race, and spirituality, and in embarking on such an exploration, to make transformative connections with fellow Sisters.
In July, we will hold a similar panel featuring Muslim sisters. We intend to repeat each of these events with different speakers in the fall to present a wide range perspectives and to spark healthy, dynamic, and respectful intra-faith and interfaith conversations. Together, we will devise new understandings of one another's identities, gain the vocabulary needed to engage in respectful dialogue, and become better advocates for one another.
Volunteers Needed for Specific Projects!
Are you looking to give back to the Sisterhood through a discrete volunteer project? We are looking for volunteers in a few distinct areas. Read on and reach out to learn more!
Are you an event planner? Do you like working in collaboration with fellow Sisterhood members? Planning for the 9th annual Sisterhood conference, to be held in November 2022, is underway. If you would like to take part in putting together this special event, please email Nicole- [email protected].
The Membership Committee seeks volunteers with experience in the following categories to assist in developing materials related to member and volunteer initiatives. The categories for which volunteers are needed include HR, Project Management, Training, Data Management, and Graphic Design. Please use this link to tell us more about yourself and your areas of expertise.
Stranger/Sister Screening Opportunities
The social impact campaign for Stranger/Sister is in full swing! If you've been wanting to bring this powerful catalyst for dialogue and change to your community, now's your chance! Odyssey Impact/Transform Films are leading a campaign designed to educate, engage, and activate local communities to unite against hate and create peaceful dialogue across lines of difference.
Stranger/Sister is available for screenings hosted by individuals, community organizations, corporations, houses of worship, schools, universities, and more. The Odyssey Impact team can offer guidance from beginning to end and will provide a digital Screening Toolkit, which includes a Facilitator's Guide, Community Discussion Guide, Classroom Guide, marketing materials, and a social media press kit, all designed to make the screening experience as impactful as possible.
Now is the perfect time to host a screening in your community. If you'd like to request additional information or are ready for next steps, fill out a host a screening inquiry form today.
Virtual Coffee Connection
Join the 160+ women who've met another sister through our Virtual Coffee Connection! Ready to give it a try? Click this link, fill out the brief form, and we'll match you to a fellow sister. The two of you can then arrange your own virtual coffee/tea date! Please note, pairings are made in order of request and are not solely Muslim-Jewish matches. Thank you!
Support the Sisterhood Through AmazonSmile
If you're an Amazon shopper, please consider supporting the Sisterhood while you shop! Visit the Sisterhood's unique AmazonSmile link and select the Sisterhood as your charitable organization of your choice. 0.5% of your eligible purchases will be donated to support our work. Thank you!
Partner Organization Opportunities
Voting Rights in the United States- Mejdi Tours
July 17-21, 2022
This tour, offered by Mejdi Tours, will focus on voting rights in the United States and current challenges. Trip participants will meet with organizations working to make voting accessible for every citizen. This tour will also visit important civil rights landmarks, sites and speakers to further explore the complex history of voting rights in the United States.
Registration deadline is June 3, 2022. Please click here for more information.
Please note, this tour opportunity is offered as a courtesy to our partner organization, Mejdi Tours, who organized our virtual Israel-Palestine trip. Although it is not an official Sisterhood trip, we endorse its mission and strongly encourage you to participate in it!
Your donation supports the critical mission of the Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom to build bridges and destroy the barriers of hate.