Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Esther Williams, president of Shalom Task Force; Dr. Shana Frydman, executive director; Shaindy Urman, Pillar of Strength Award; Avital Levin, director of education.

(Courtesy of Shalom Task Force) On Sunday, November 17, Shalom Task Force greeted over 300 community members at their annual brunch at the Sephardic Temple in Cedarhurst. This standing-room-only crowd came together to support the critical services that Shalom Task Force provides to the community. As Dr. Shoshannah D. Frydman, executive director, reflected in her opening remarks, “This full room is a statement to survivors that we see them, hear them and support them.” 

This year, Shalom Task Force honored Miriam Ellenberg as the guest of honor. Rabbi Yehuda and Lisa Septimus received the Community Leadership Award. Shaindy Urman was honored with the Pillar of Strength Award. New York City Councilman Rory Lancman, New York State Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi and New York State Senator Todd Kaminsky were presented with the Distinguished Service Award. Their remarks strongly reflected their united commitment to combatting domestic violence and assisting survivors with critical services. 

Rabbi Yehuda and Lisa Septimus conveyed that in their community roles they often rely on Shalom Task Force as an important resource for congregants and students. Guest of honor Miriam Ellenberg reflected on her many years of working as a volunteer at Shalom Task Force—and how she has seen the community shift to acknowledge the needs of victims and the importance of prevention. 

While accepting the Pillar of Strength award, Shaindy Urman shared that she is a survivor of abuse. She gracefully spoke about the fact that “Domestic violence is such a deeply misunderstood world, and the devastating impact it has on its survivors and their families are immeasurable. To fight it, we first need to understand it. And that’s the work that needs to be done, the work that Shalom Task Force does each and every day. Dispelling the darkness and mystery that is domestic violence.” 

Urman challenged the crowd to help support victims. She concluded her remarks by sharing, “There are hundreds of you here today supporting an organization that combats domestic violence. That’s powerful. If we take that power and we take these numbers and we keep multiplying, perhaps, together, we can actually fight this.”

We were also honored to hear from New York State Assemblyman David Weprin, New York State Assemblywoman Stacey Pfeffer Amato and New York State Senator Anna Kaplan. They all shared words of encouragement and support. The Honorable Audrey Pheffer and Councilman Donovan Richards attended, and demonstrated again their strong dedication to this organization.

Through its confidential hotline, legal services, education and community programs, Shalom Task Force promotes safe relationships, healthy families and a supportive community. If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, please reach out to Shalom Task Force at 718-337-3700, 888-883-2323 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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