MISSION & VISION | BACKGROUND AND MODEL | WHY MOISHE HOUSE?
| 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY | OUR TEAM BOARD OF DIRECTORS | LEAGUE OF CHAMPIONS | INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL | EVALUATION | MOISHE MONTHLY JOBS | ALUMNI By JACOB NIERENBERG Seattle Times staff reporter When Raphael Ginsburg, 23, moved to Seattle in January, he knew only one person in the city.
Eight months later, he feels like he’s part of the Seattle community, thanks to Moishe House.
“That was a big deal, having that instant community, that instant group of friends that I can associate with,” said Ginsburg, who moved into Moishe House after a friend put him in contact with a fellow University of Maryland graduate who was living in the house. Moishe House is an international nonprofit organization that aims to help young Jewish adults feel connected with their communities and traditions.The seed for the organization was planted in 2006 by four housemates in Oakland, Calif., who would occasionally invite their friends over for Shabbat dinners on Fridays.According to director of marketing and communications Jason Boschan, their first dinner was attended by 72 people.Ten years later, Moishe House has 89 houses in 21 countries.The Seattle Moishe House, the 77th location, opened last September.
Those who would like to become residents may either apply to join an existing house or establish a new one.The houses themselves, which have three to five residents, are subsidized by the organization; in return, residents must host five to seven events each month to engage the local Jewish community.These events may be of a secular nature — yoga sessions and outdoor excursions appear regularly on Seattle Moishe House’scalendar — but they may also be in observance of holidays such as Shavuot, the harvest festival, and Tu B’Av, similar to Valentine’s Day. 23, all 89 Moishe Houses will host a Shabbat dinner to celebrate Moishe House’s 10th anniversary.Seattle Moishe House’s first event in August was a food-culture night where the residents discussed the role of fermented foods in Jewish culture.Like all Moishe House events, it was a lively affair, attended by about 25 visitors — less than half as many as a typical Shabbat dinner turnout, but enough people to fill the living room.Residents caught up with their friends from outside the house, making plans for after the event; one guest talked about his recent trip to Israel.