April 23, 2014   23 Nisan 5774
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Honoring Our Veterans
Mar. 29, 2013
Temple Sinai is deeply appreciative of the sacrifice our soldiers have made and continue to make for our country. We know it can be challenging for them to engage their Judaism while serving. Our USO presence, streaming of services and Military Shabbat service is a small way in which we, their Jewish brothers and sisters in Atlanta, can say thank you.

Community Contact Information:
Temple Sinai
Sandy Springs, GA
http://www.templesinaiatlanta.org


Goals:
- Show appreciation and support for our US Military, active & retired, and their families.
- Provide military personnel worldwide the opportunity to participate in Shabbat services, High Holy Day services and/or life cycle events.
- Give recognition to our members and their families who have, or are serving in the military.

Overview:
Temple Sinai is deeply appreciative of the sacrifice our soldiers have made and continue to make for our country. We know it can be challenging for them to engage their Judaism while serving. Our USO presence, streaming of services and Military Shabbat service is a small way in which we, their Jewish brothers and sisters in Atlanta, can say thank you.

Preparation:
This is an on-going program that enlists approximately 100 congregants who volunteer in 3 hours shifts at the airport. It includes picking up food and drinks and serving the troops as they pass through the USO office. We provide military personnel, worldwide, the opportunity to stream HHD services, as well as weekly Shabbat services. To prepare for our Military Shabbat we contacted the Georgia Air National Guard Honor Guard to present the colors at the beginning of the service. A form was created for congregants to complete that included all of their (or immediate family members) military service information. We also contacted retired military congregants to speak and to carry flags representing their branch of service and also contacted Jewish War vets to invite them to our service. Finally, congregants were also requested to send in military pictures that she were to create a slide show that was shown before and after the service.

Project Implementation:
Honoring our Military occurs throughout the year. We participate as volunteers at the USO at Hartsfield/Jackson Atlanta International Airport a minimum of 6-7 times per year. Over 100 volunteers help staff the program. In addition to simply greeting troops as they arrive and helping them with any questions they have, and providing food (sandwiches, snacks & drinks) for them, we have brought in Atlanta Falcons cheerleaders and autographed footballs to give to the troops. We also work with chefs on Christmas to provide a traditional holiday meal.

During the High Holy Days, we promote/share our services with Jewish soldiers via our online streaming. Military bases in the US and overseas have 'attended' HHD services with us. We contacted local bases inviting non-affiliated families to attend services at our synagogue. At our most recent Military Shabbat, through donations from our members we collected 900 lbs of candy to send to troops deployed overseas.

Results:
Temple Sinai received a plaque from the USO in recognition of our contribution and support of the US Military. Through data from Google Analytics and appreciation emails received, we were able to determine that many soldiers overseas and in various bases in the US were able to participate in HHD services. The overall response from the Military Shabbat service was overwhelming with appreciative comments and follow up notes from those who participated, both at the synagogue and through our streaming services.

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