JERUSALEM – Ayeka: The Center for Soulful Education today announced that as a result of the impact on COVID 19 on the organization’s activities and funding, it has made adjustments to its programming and staff. As part of these changes, Ayeka’s director of North America, Michal Fox Smart, will be leaving her position, effective June 30. Her duties will be assumed by Ayeka’s founder and director, Aryeh Ben David, assisted by Ayeka’s team of senior educators.
Smart joined the staff of Ayeka in the August 2018 as the organization’s first director of North American operations. Prior to her appointment, she served as associate principal of Judaic Studies at Bi-Cultural Day School (now Bi-Cultural Hebrew Academy) in Stamford.
Since mid-March, Ayeka has pivoted online as schools closed their doors and in-person seminars and gatherings became impossible. Ayeka transformed its flagship Soulful Spiritual Development Program for Jewish Day Schools, funded by the Jim Joseph Foundation, to be a source of professional and emotional support for educators. All Ayeka schools have remained as members of the cohort for the 2020-2021 academic year, despite the uncertainty created by the COVID 19 pandemic.
In addition, Ayeka has produced a series of online webinars, “Moving Soulfully Through Difficult Times,” targeted to educators, parents, and the online community, particularly in North America and Israel. Ayeka has also reached out to its partners to provide them with responsive programs and is also actively pursuing new partnerships to expand its ‘Becoming a Soulful Parent’ programs across North America, during this challenging period.
“For the past two years, Michal successfully directed Ayeka’s team of educators in our efforts to introduce our spiritual development programs across Jewish day schools in North America,” said Aryeh Ben David, Ayeka’s founder and director. “She worked closely with numerous schools as well as Ayeka’s funders, including the Jim Joseph Foundation and the Avi Chai, Kohelet and Mayberg foundations. On behalf of our entire organization, we extend our thanks and appreciation to Michal for her wisdom, guidance, and leadership, and wish her only the best and success in her future endeavors.”
Founded in 2006, Ayeka’s mission is to provide teachers and individuals with tools to breathe life into Jewish text study and enable a personally relevant, meaningful, and life-impacting experience. For more information, visit www.ayeka.org.il.
Main Photo: Michal Fox Smart