The JRCC East Thornhill Women’s Circle hosted a Spa for the Soul event, an evening of relaxation, beauty, depth and spirituality. Participants experienced an uplifting evening featuring a talk by Mrs. Goldie Plotkin, co-Director of Chabad of Markham, on the topic of “Faith Under Fire.” In addition, women enjoyed spa treatments, wellness workshops and gourmet desserts, in a nurturing atmosphere permeated by warmth, friendship and community.


An evening celebrating the life and leadership of the Rebbe in honor of Yud Shevat (the 10th of Shevat, the day the Rebbe accepted the mantle of leadership) was hosted at the JRCC East Thornhill on January 21. The highlight of the evening was a fascinating talk delivered by noted author and therapist Rabbi Shais Taub who spoke about creation as a love story between G‑d and humanity. A farbgrengen followed the event, where participants discussed how the Rebbe used his leadership to inspire people to reach their potential and motivate other to join his revolution that transformed Jewish life around the world forever.


As part of the annual international “One Shabbat, One World” event, JRCC branches, along with 1,000 communities across the globe, hosted Friday night Community Dinners at several locations on January 26. The events were part of the worldwide initiative to celebrate one Shabbat to unite the world, to bring the long awaited redemption for all mankind. Close to 600 people attended the engaging events, enjoying a delicious, traditional multi-course Shabbat meal, a warm atmosphere permeated with songs and words of wisdom, and fascinating discussions about the Messianic era and its significance in Jewish life.


Tu B’Shvat, the Jewish New Year for Trees, was commemorated with several events in the JRCC community. This is the season in which the earliest-blooming trees in the Land of Israel emerge from their winter sleep and begin a new fruit-bearing cycle. It is celebrated by eating fruit, particularly from the kinds that are singled out by the  Torah  in its praise of the bounty of the Holy Land, and reflect upon the lessons we can learn about life using trees as a metaphor. Children’s events were held though the popular Kiddie Chefs program in S. Richmond Hill, West Thornhill and East Thornhill, where children and their parents made fruit-inspired creations together. In addition, the JRCC S. Richmond Hill & Maple hosted a Tu B’Shvat Celebration community event for adults.


The JRCC Furniture Depot (FD) is undergoing major renovation to enable the expansion of its capacity to serve the needs of the community. The FD clientele quickly grew eightfold in just two years – from 100 families in 2014 to 800 families in 2016 – a maximum capacity at which is has currently peaked. In order to continue meeting the growing need, two loading docks are being constructed at the back of the facility. This massive capital project, expected to be completed mid-2018, is being enabled through the Ontario150 Grant and a generous donation from Dr. Marat Ressin. Over the past few years, Dr. Ressin has allowed the FD to use the warehouse space for TMI cost only, saving the FD thousands of dollars annually. The current growth in operations also necessitates additional employees, and currently the FD is looking to fill two full-time positions for a warehouse worker and a furniture mover. Learn more at JrccFurnitureDepot.org.