A new publication was announced at the House of Lords, focussing on the need to strengthen small diaspora communities in The Commonwealth.

‘Shared values, common causes’, was launched by the Commonwealth Jewish Council (CJC) last Thursday, and sets out a new vision for re-energising the organisation in small diaspora communities.

Laura Marks, a CJC trustee, also presented an award to George and Lyn Walton of the Cayman Islands, who have built a synagogue for their community.

Clive Lawton, CEO, praised “the ready enthusiasm with which communities around the world have embraced our new enhanced vision of a rich network of communities, some infinitesimally tiny, some many hundreds of thousands, learning from each other, supporting each other, sharing good ideas and enriching our capacity to give to the wider world.”

He added, writing the book had “revealed to me how much there is to do and how much we can do together.”

Laura Marks OBE, (Trustee of the CJC), George and Lyn Walton from the Cayman Islands, Lord Mendelsohn (President of the CJC)

Laura Marks OBE, (Trustee of the CJC), George and Lyn Walton from the Cayman Islands, Lord Mendelsohn (President of the CJC)

President of the organisation, Lord Mendelsohn, said he was “delighted that the Commonwealth Jewish Council has now been strengthened with regional leadership from the great communities of Australia, Canada, South Africa and the UK.

Our award recipients, Lyn and George, exemplify the best of community leadership – building a Synagogue and vital community infrastructure – and it is in small communities like these where we can have a real impact. In the diaspora we will also be able to articulate our unique voice as Jewish communities spanning the 53 countries of the Commonwealth which share common values as outlined in our new publication.”

Joining Lord Mendelsohn was Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, Senior Reform Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner, Senior Rabbi of the S&P Sephardi Community Joseph Dweck, Acting Israeli Ambassador Eitan Na’eh and Board of Deputies President Jonathan Arkush.