July 27 – The Abayudaya
We arrived at the Abayudaya community on Thursday early evening and were taken to the guest house. For this part of the country this place is extremely nice. The Abayudaya are used to housing people from all over the world and we have been treated like family since we came here. The guest house is managed by Isaac and the cooks/house women are Rachael and her daughter Halima. They have been so nice and they are amazing cooks (according to me and Deb, not sure Ilise and the kids are enjoying the food so much).
The night we arrived Deb and I were able to meet with Rabbi Gersham, who runs the community. He was very excited to have Deb here and talk about opening a U-TOUCH Center on the campus. They have a building that is only used from 9-12 every day. So, the Center could be open from 8-9 in the morning and from noon to 8 PM at night. The Rabbi also talked about a young man named Saddat who could be the trainer for the center. It turns out that Saddat is Raechel’s son and very excited about this opportunity. We had a conference call with Danielle in San Francisco about the concerns that they have about the center. Danielle works for the non-profit org that promotes the Abayudaya in the US. They had tried to build a center a number of years ago and it failed. She wanted to make sure we didn’t make the same mistakes.
Rabbi Gersham said he would ask the carpenter to come in the morning and when we arrived in the morning to discuss the project the carpenter and the electrician were there. We discussed the layout of the center and how we would use the space and they promised to get back to us with budgetary estimates. It turns out that they had estimates the same day. This place is set up for success!