visits to namutumba
Board members Rabbi Yafa Chase and Samantha Mandeles have both visited the Abayudaya of Namutumba: Rabbi Yafa in 2017 (with her daughter Ariel) to perform multiple community weddings and Samantha in 2021 to bring the community their first-ever kosher Torah. Scroll down to see photos from each of their visits below!
As part of board member Samantha's visit to Namutumba, she carried with her a large kosher Torah donated by the former Temple Beth El of Hammonton, NJ. Temple Beth El had to close in 2021, but their legacy lives on in Uganda through their beautiful Torah. For two weeks, Samantha lived in the village, and saw firsthand how Ezra Uganda's donors have directly improved the lives of the people—the synagogue, the granary, the solar panels, the oxen and plows, and more. Samantha wrote about her trip: "Throughout my visit, I experienced the joy and strength that Judaism gives to the community, their commitment to living Jewishly, and the eagerness of everyone to learn as much as they can about Judaism and Israel."