Media Release

11 October 2018

Southwick: Liberals back Bentleigh’s growing Jewish community

Thursday 11 October 2018

Liberals back Bentleigh’s growing Jewish community

An elected Liberal Government will support the growing Jewish community in Bentleigh with grants of $300,000 to local Jewish community organisations.

Sitting on the southern end of Melbourne’s famous “bagel-belt”, the Bentleigh community is experiencing a rapidly growing number of Jewish residents with over 3,100 Jews calling Bentleigh home.

Despite this growing community, many existing Jewish community facilities in Bentleigh have fallen behind and are in urgent need of repairs and upgrades. Currently, Jewish community groups use a combination 60 year old buildings in disrepair and a mixture of housing assets converted for short term functionality.

These grants will fund facility refurbishments at four community centres in Bentleigh and include $100,000 each for Etz Chayim and the United Jewish Education Board (UJEB) as well as $50,000 for both the Moorabbin Hebrew Congregation and Chabad House of Bentleigh.

These four community groups provide and facilitate a range of services including education, seniors programs, special interest group discussions, child care, religious studies, charity work and weekend extra-curricular activities.

UJEB’s Executive Director Itzik Sztokman has welcomed this announcement stating “UJEB services primary school kids in the Bentleigh area with access to Jewish education and these capital investments will ensure we have the capacity to grow and continue to offer a comprehensive and quality Jewish educational experience”.

The Liberal Nationals understand the critical role these community groups play in Bentleigh’s multicultural community and are committed to ensuring they have the facilities needed to continue to service the Bentleigh Jewish community into the future.

Comments attributable to Member for Caulfield, David Southwick:

“Bentleigh’s congregation’s service thousands of local Jews with education, seniors programs and charity work and this investment will see these programs expand into the future.

Bentleigh’s local Jewish community is rapidly expanding and demand for services have never been higher.”

Comments attributable to Liberal Candidate for Bentleigh, Asher Judah:

“Having grown up in the area I understand the value these congregations bring to the Bentleigh’s multicultural community.

Only a Matthew Guy Liberal Government will support Bentleigh’s growing Jewish community by investing in critical facility upgrades for Bentleigh’s congregations.”