A new Hakoah looming

July 29, 2020 by Henry Benjamin
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Hakoah president Steven Lowy talks about the hiatus between Hakoah in Hall St in Bondi which closed its doors in 2009 and the projected new club at White City which, if all goes to plan, will open in 2023/4.

Steven Lowy

Steven said that Hakoah in Hall St was a core part of our Sydney Jewish community

He stressed: “Maybe people don’t realise it but there has been an enormous gap within the community because of the closure of Hall St.”

Lowy said that Hall St was closed because the physical building was not representative of what was needed at the time but White City will have the sporting, cultural, and recreational facilities appropriate for today.”

He believes the community will embrace it as if it was always there.

He told J-Wire There are many Jews in Sydney who are not affiliated with the community through major organisations such as UIA, JNF, and JCA. Only 50% of Jewish kids go to Jewish day schools. Many community members do not go to synagogue wither.”

Hakoah will give them the ability to be part of the community as it will span the entire spectrum.”

J-Wire asked Steven Lowy if the re-emergence of Hakoah will provide the cement to bind the community more closely.

He responded: “Hakoah will be a beacon of light for the community when it opens.”

The club has raised $40 million of  the $60 million needed from major donors.

He said: We hope to approach the general community for memberships and donations at the end of this year or early next year.

Asked about disruption for Maccabi tennis during construction Lowy said: “There will be some downtime for Maccabi but they are extending from six to nine courts and a new clubhouse so they have building plans themselves.

J-Wire asked Steven Lowy about this project means to him.

He said: “On a personal basis, to have the ability to have an impact on such a  transformational project for our community will be very rewarding because I have the ability to influence the outcome of the project

I am doing this for the reason of building a community hub and I am working with a highly talented board and senior management team to bring this about.

If we can overcome all the hurdles necessary to bring the project to reality will be rewarding. Our community will have a home and therefore be a lot stronger and Jewish identity will be enhanced for decades to come.

50 years ago saw the first AGM and my father was the president in 1970 and I am the president in 2020. In 1970, the club changed from what was essentially a football club to a licensed sporting club. So it became a social club.

In 2020. our objective is to broaden the use of the club. Sport will remain important but equally as important will be communal, cultural, music and art activities for example.

All the communal organisations will be able to hold their functions there.

It will be the home of the Sydney community.”

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