Building the Community of your
Dreams in the Land of Israel
Rabbi Yaacov Schwartz - Rebbetzin Chani Schwartz
Rabbi Schwartz is a popular community speaker and Torah teacher in Israel and the US with well over two decades of pulpit rabbinic experience in the USA and now Israel (Congregation Ohav Sholom Upper West Side NYC and Young Israel of Oceanside NY). He is also active as a kiruv rabbi and teacher in the United States and in Israel.
He has been designated as Rabbi for Emerald Gardens/Emerald Heights area of the prestigious Mishkafayim Section of Ramat Bet Shemesh Aleph, slated for completion in 2017-18.
Rabbi Schwartz was ordained at Yeshiva Torah Vodaath in Brooklyn where he received Smicha from his revered Rebbe and mentor, Rabbi Avrohom Pam zt”l, and served as a Congregational Rabbi in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and in Oceanside, Long Island.
Rabbi Schwartz holds graduate degrees in Jewish History and Philosophy and from the Wurzweiler School of Social Work of Yeshiva University, a degree in Pastoral Psychology from the Postgraduate Center for Mental Health in NYC. He served on the Jewish Studies faculty of Yeshiva College and as a member of its Gruss Kollel Elyon.
Rabbi Schwartz is the Founder of Mosdot Kanfey Shemesh, a recognized Amuta in Israel and the USA(501c3), which, in addition to Torah education and outreach, provides expert social services and support for the Jewish community of Ramat Beit Shemesh, including marital and family therapy and financial counselling for families, in conjunction with local major Tz’dakah organizations and Rabbonim.
Since making Aliyah in August 2012, Rabbi Schwartz, his wife, Chani, and children have resided in Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel with their family.
Rabbi J. Yaacov Schwartz
Emerald Gardens Kehila
Ramat Beit Shemesh
Our apartment buildings are in advanced stages of construction and nearly 80% of them have already been sold. The villas, which are currently beginning construction, are 50% sold. We have begun to meet and network to study and get to know the extraordinary families that have joined our project, and some of the other 500+ families who will be moving into our immediate vicinity. The first occupants are scheduled to enter their new homes in 8-10 months, with others joining within the next 18-20 months.
My role as rabbi, and Chani’s role as rebbetzin, is to establish a vibrant kehilla of individuals and families who share an interest in contributing in a major way to the vibrancy and success of the life of the many Anglo olim who are privileged to call our new neighborhood their future home. There is excitement in the air, and enthusiasm abounds.
We are very pleased to welcome our dear friends, the Frank family of Far Rockaway and Milwaukee, who purchased two apartments with stunning vistas in our Emerald Gardens/Emerald Heights development. We are thrilled to have them as part of our growing kehilla.
Our Land Grant Application for our Synagogue/Center is awaiting approval from the Beit Shemesh City Council. As part of this process, we have established our Synagogue/Center Building Fund, with an initial challenge grant of $10,000 from our dear friends, Rabbi Aaron and Pearl Draizin of Montreal, in memory of their dear uncle, Rabbi Simcha Levy zatal, former Mara D’Atra of Congregation Sha’arey Tefila, in Perth Amboy NJ, where he was succeeded by our parents, Rabbi Albert and Gloria Schwartz.
Our Gemach Building Fund is hosted by the RBS Tzedaka Fund/Keren Lev Yisrael. By this arrangement, we provide an added incentive to our donors. All monies deposited will be used as a gemach fund, fully guaranteed by the RBS Tzedada Fund, who will return all monies which will be allocated for building fund purposes in the summer of 2018.
The Kehilla at Emerald Gardens Ramat Beit Shemesh-HaMishkafayim:
In Fall 2014, I was invited by LaGur BaRama Ltd., headed by Mr. Oren Edri, to serve as the rabbi for the Emerald Gardens/Emerald Heights neighborhood (consisting of 114 luxury apartments, and 24 magnificent villas facing the breathtaking hills of Judea and is literally rising before our eyes).
ESMF Kanfey Shemesh Inc.
Leadership Briefing--Project Updates and Initiatives for 5777
September 2016-Elul 5776
Jewish Family Wellness Center—HaElef L’cha Shalom Couples Counseling Project:
As a registered professional social worker, and a certified pastoral counselor, in both the US and Israel, I continued to service many families, both Israeli and American, with professional marriage and family counseling services, in conjunction with the RBS Tzedaka Fund (Kupa shel Tzedaka RBS). I personally helped them navigate the Bituach LeUmi system and assisted them with securing discounts for their city taxes, utilities, parking registration, tuition fees and much more. Our service was not only focused on communication and resolving conflict, but on providing actual financial management and advocacy, in Hebrew, for Anglo families struggling to work with the system of social welfare, education and aliya services. We helped families secure tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of entitlements, subsidies and discounts, that due to their lack of Hebrew language skills and other emotional difficulties, were unable to access on their own, without our direct hands-on intervention.
In a new initiative that began this Fall, we created a 6 session program of intensive psychological evaluation of families seeking help for marital difficulties, integrating psychoeducation and formal evaluation. We recruited sponsors to contribute $1000 per family served, with the ultimate goal of reaching 1000 families here in Israel or in other major Jewish communities who will join our program online.
Our powerful combination of clearly articulated guidance from some of our greatest rabbinic authorities on relationship matters of this past generation, including my revered teacher, Rabbi Avrohom Yaakov HaCohen Pam zl, Rabbi Shlomo Wolbe zl and Rabbi Chaim Friedlander zl are presented to the couple after a formal evaluation conducted using the materials and tools from one of the world’s leading experts on Marriage Counseling, Dr. John Gottman. Our initiative is designed to follow up with the couples periodically and chart their progress, and to provide opportunities by phone and other methods, for support and ongoing care.
As part of this initiative, we are translating selected teachings on Shalom Bayis from Rabbi Pam, Rabbi Wolbe and others, which will serve as the solid hashkafa foundation of our counseling interventions. Working together with rabbonim and lay leaders, we seek to connect with our first group of couples immediately after the Yomim Tovim.
In addition, Chani completed a graduate program in counseling at the Yanar Institute in Jerusalem, and she served as the Guidance Counselor for the Anglo olim at the Shuvu High School for Girls in Beit Shemesh (Ulpana Omana V’Omanut), where she was very warmly received and was integrated as a key member of the school’s staff, focusing on mediating between the school, Anglo olim and their daughters, and the issues and challenges that they confront.