WOW weekend

June 17, 2019 by Community newsdesk
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Sydney’s The Great Synagogue’s ‘Women of Worth’ WOW Weekend is back to WOW the women of Sydney.

An initiative of the vice president, Caroline Lewis, this must-do weekend returns on Saturday 6 & Sunday 7 July, 2019 and offers Jewish women from all walks of life, a program of inspiring speakers and a varied range of interactive discussions and activities.

The engaging theme around ‘Friendship, Family, Fearlessness, Fun, Faith, Food, Fashion and the Future’,has been created to empower and energise women of all ages and stages and attract cross-generational and cross-communal participants. Designed not to fund-raise, but to spirit-raise, we once again have the support of communal organisations who are on board to help promote the weekend and involve their members in the program.

Shabbat morning will coincide with the final and beautiful choral service with Cantor Joshua Weinberger who is making aliyah with his family. Weekend activities start with a delicious communal lunch preceding Registration, and conclude with a celebratory champagne high tea.Our outstanding speakers secured for the event include: 

  • ‘Speed Friend-ing’with Juliet Lewis to start the weekend making new friends and finding old ones;
  • Justine Sless, Melbourne comedian sharing her exploration of her Jewish roots as an adult;
  • Physio Rebecca Reicher connecting us without pelvic floors so we can laugh – and sneeze – with confidence;
  • Judith Levitan sharing her journey towards becoming the first Orthodox woman in NSW to receive ordination (smicha).
  • Danielle Chiel Bobbi Mahlab making a difference in so many women’s lives through mentoring and empowerment;
  • Michaela Kalowski quizzing three generations of family: Myrna Kangisser, Robyn Bernitz, Danielle Goodman& Megan Bernitz on “Things My Mother Never Told Me”;
  • Challenging discussions on Sexual Consent with Dr Ellie Freedman interviewed by Hilary May Black;
  • Rita Bratanis & Zehava Heinrichinterviewing one another on the trials and tribulations of being migrants returning to Australia 30 years apart;
  • ‘Taking Control of End of Life Choices’ panel with medical experts Susan Hertzberg, Dr. Judith Lacey & Simone Green RN facilitated byDr Yvonne Selecki;
  • Young Madeleine Buchner’s big initiative, Little Dreamers for young carers, which won her JCA’s Shark Tank; 

The newest initiative of The Great and for WOW is ’12 Over 12’ taking place on the Shabbat afternoon as the Sydney Women’s Tefilah Groupsupports12 women over the age of 12 (ages 31–84) commemorating their Mitzvah in a unique and movingMinchaservice.This culminates in a Havdalah experience to celebrate the end of Shabbat before participants have the option to attend the annual ‘Women of Diversity’ Dinner, going by coach courtesy of JBOD, to Parramatta, to join over 400 women from a wide variety of ethnic and religious backgrounds to chat, eat, sing and dance.

Caroline Lewis said“The WOW Weekend is a celebration of the women in our Jewish community and beyond, held at the majestic Great Synagogue, Sydney. Our vision was to create a modern and cross-generational event where women spark and rekindle friendships, cry with sadness and laughterand share several ‘WOW’ moments together. This year’s line-up promises fresh ideas, new experiences and different perspectives with plenty of time to pause and reflect, develop and share new connections leaving participants feeling more connected, revitalised and replenished.”


Tickets are available from the Synagogue’s WOW Website at:


The full programme is available at:

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