While Sha’arei Tsedek remains a completely “virtual” community during the COVID-19 crisis, this page will serve as a resource for our members, with information on our services, learning programmes and a variety of other available offerings.

Please rest assured that no matter what your concern or question, our dedicated staff, Rabbinic Team and Council are here for you. Please don’t hesitate to contact any of us either via our Facebook page, on Twitter, by email to info@shaarei-tsedek. org.uk or by calling 020 8445 3400.

These are fast changing times. We are reviewing our arrangements every day, and we will do all we can to stay in touch with you.

Sha’arei Tsedek Night Shelter initiative – UPDATE

During the current Coronavirus outbreak night shelters in Barnet, run by Homeless Action in Barnet, has been trying to keep running its normal service. However, this has been challenging for both the guests and volunteers. As the pandemic has worsened it has become harder to sustain the night shelter provisions offered within the borough and the current shelter provisions have been temporarily closed.

Speaking about the situation Amanda Weiss, Charity Operations Manager for Together in Barnet says: “I am very pleased and relieved to inform our supporters, that, as of Monday evening, all of the guests supported by the charity have been placed in temporary accommodation provided by the government in West London. Needless to say this is fantastic news”.

Our shelter was due to start in June and run until September. Unfortunately, this initiative is now temporarily on hold until further notice. Over the coming weeks and months HAB will be working in conjunction with the government to organise logistics of getting necessary essentials to the clients.

As a small charity these changes will pose some financial challenges to the organisation. If you would like to support Homeless Action in Barnet/Together in Barnet and make a donation please click here.

Alonim Kindergarten is staying open to support children of Key Workers during the Coronavirus outbreak

Released: 23 March 2020

Alonim has announced it is staying open to support children of key workers and those from working families. On Wednesday (18 March), Gavin Williamson, the education secretary, said all schools would close on Friday until further notice. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, in his daily conference confirmed the closures but said some schools would be kept open with a skeleton staff to provide support for children of key workers, including NHS staff, police and delivery drivers.

Roz Levenson, Head Teacher said: “It is essential that we support families so that NHS staff can work during this critical time. I am proud that the Alonim team can help”.

Richard Woolf, Chair added: “I am grateful to our teachers, security and caretaking staff who have volunteered to work so that Alonim can stay open. Thank you to everyone at this difficult time”.

Sha’arei Tsedek Caretaking and Security staff will continue to provide support whilst Alonim Kindergarten remains open.

Israeli Movie Night
Over the last decade Israel has emerged as a surprising powerhouse in the foreign film industry with many award-winning films and TV series. Unfortunately due to the CoronaVirus outbreak the UK SERET International Israeli Film Festival has been postponed. However, they are streaming films on a weekly basis every Thursday at 8.00 pm. For more details click here.

Reform Judaism – RJ:TV

RJ:TV is Reform Judaism’s interactive broadcasting platform for these challenging times. Each day RJ will provide a range of interactive programming that you are invited to join – from daily prayer services and adult learning sessions to fun for all ages and casual catch-ups. Click here for details.

RSY-Netzer -Remote Synagogue Youth

RSY-Netzer – Remote Synagogue Youth 

Programming for schools years 1-11 is provided by RSY-Netzer. Click here for more details and how to register for the programme.


Erev Shabbat: Fridays, 6.45 pm

Shabbat Morning: Saturdays, 10.30 am

Children & Youth

Virtual Religion School: Sundays,  9.30 am

Story-time for under fives: Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays, 12 noon

Stories suitable for pre school children

Erev Shabbat Mishpacha Services: select Fridays, 4.00 pm

Virtual B’nei Mitzvah Group: Fridays, 5.00 pm


‘Start your week on a positive note – mental health well-being sessions’: Mondays, 12.45 pm

Join Therapist Ruth Dines for a short interactive mental health well-being session.

Tuesday Teatime with Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu: Tuesdays, 3.00 pm

Start boiling the kettle! Take a little break and join Rabbi Shulamit for a virtual cup of tea, chat and catch-up.

Book Club: monthly on Mondays, 3.00 pm

The next meeting is on Monday 1 June. Please click here for details.

Teatime Quiz: Wednesdays, 3.00 pm

Test your general knowledge and trivia from the comfort of your sofa. Join us for a fun quiz for all levels and abilities.

Adult Education

Midweek Group with Rabbi Colin Eimer: select Wednesdays, 10.00 am

Musical Parternships with Rabbi James Baaden: select Thursdays, 3.00 pm

‘Just One Word’ with Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu: Fridays, 3.00 pm

Exploring spirituality through one Hebrew word at a time.

Follow along with us: All our programming is hosted via Zoom.

Care Mails

Therapist Ruth Dines shares hints and tips on how to remain calm and positive during the current situation.  

Care Mail #1  Breathing Exercise to relax you

Care Mail #2 Relaxation Exercise – Grounding through the five senses: Sight, Hearing, Touch, Smell & Taste

Care Mail #3 Managing Negative Thoughts

In this short video Ruth shares some CBT strategies to help those of you who are experiencing negative, sometimes catastrophising thoughts, so you can learn how to ‘turn them down’ or even ‘off’, thereby helping you to focus on more realistic, even positive thoughts.

 If you have any questions after watching the video please don’t hesitate to contact Ruth, either by text or email (therapy@ruthdines.com) and she’ll be happy to answer any queries you may have.

Care Mail #4 – Self soothing exercise

Care Mail #5 – Grief and Mourning

Care Mail #6 – If you have suffered a loss. Part 1

Care Mail #7 – So what is happiness?

Care Mail #8 – Having a meaningful life. Tips and hints.

Care Mail #9 – Stopping feelings of inadequacy, hints and tips

Care Mail #10 – How you can replace emotional reactivity with thoughtful observation

CareMail #11 – Life After Lockdown

CareMail #12 – The Health One

CareMail 13 – Health Matters – My Lifestyle

CareMail 14 – Loneliness – This CareMail on loneliness looks at various ways to help you manage those lonely feelings, with lots of different ideas and activities.

How to connect to ZOOM

You can join online from a computer or mobile device, by heading to www.zoom.us/join and entering meeting ID 583-189-9518. 

You can also join from a phone by dialling 0131 460 1196 and enter meeting ID 583-189-9518. You will only be able to hear the content and interact verbally. You won’t be able to view the content.

Updated Funeral Guidance from Reform Judaism

The Assembly of Reform Rabbis and Cantors together with the Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors have revised their guidelines with regards to mourners attending funerals. They now permit the presence of small groups of relatives or close friends.

More information about the new Guidelines can be found by clicking here


Jewish Bereavement Counselling Service launches new online support service 

During these unprecedented times, when there is enormous need for support, Jewish Bereavement Counselling Service (JBCS) would like to bring your attention to an online bereavement support group Butterflies, which they are planning to start.

Butterflies is specifically for parents of young children, who are themselves coping with the loss of a parent.

The group is facilitated by trained professionals, from the JBCS, who offer guidance and support.

Contact details are:
E: Butterfliesjbcs@aol.com
T: 020 8951 3881
W: www.jbcs.org.uk



Resource is a free and confidential out-placement service for unemployed members of the community.  The team of over 50 professional HR and business experts provide practical and effective advice and support to more than 400 people a year back into the workplace.


As Time Goes By 

by Kitty Freund  


This is an immersive and inspirational memoir about the life and times of the remarkable 107-year-old Kitty Freund. 


From the outset, we are absorbed into the life of her Polish-Russian orthodox family who settled in Liverpool in 1913. Kitty writes in an energetic upbeat style that helps us to understand how poverty does not prevent progress. Her family, articulate and creative, where the women were stylish and smart, the men dedicated to contributing to the new world around them, highlights all the positive aspects of immigrant life. Discovering the family’s talent for music, art and architecture is as great a treat for us, as readers, as it was for Kitty. 


Kitty came to London in 1931 and trained as a teacher. She enjoyed dancing, making her own dresses out of curtain material, and going in secret to the iconic Locarno ballroom in Streatham where Duke Ellington visited with his orchestra. It was through her passion for dancing that Kitty met Berlin-born Hans, a recent refugee from Nazi Germany, at The Connaught Rooms in London, with whom she fell in love. However, because of the uncertainty he faced in becoming a British citizen, he was forced him to leave for South Africa, where he too became a teacher. Ever-resourceful, Kitty found an exchange post and she followed him out and while they planned to return to London to marry, they were prevented from doing so by the outbreak of the Second World War. Not to be thwarted, Kitty purchased a blue linen outfit for £3.50, and the wedding went ahead in Pretoria. With the arrival of their son David and daughter Erica, the family were complete, and Kitty and Hans, were in the moral vanguard against apartheid in South Africa for many years to come, until their decision to relocate to London. Settling in Golders Green the couple enjoyed an active social, communal and family life, taking great pleasure from their grandchildren and their long-lasting happy years of 60 years of marriage. 


This highly-readable, captivating book is about courage and challenge, of might and modesty. It is the story of a remarkable woman with a willingness to adapt and to make the best of things, to live life to its fullest. Unknowingly, Kitty is the heroine of her own fascinating story and as a reader, you will quickly absorb her courage and positive attitude to life and to living. Do buy this wonderfully up-lifting book for your friends and family and like me, read it more than once.     

Review by Angela Stern, member Finchley Progressive Synagogue