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About Us

Young Israel of Jamaica Estates was established in 1979 by a small group of families living in Jamaica Estates, Fresh Meadows, Hillcrest and Holliswood, and the community grew rapidly so that it now enjoys a membership of over 200 active families under the leadership of Rabbi Dov Lerner. With outstanding professional and lay leadership, Jamaica Estates has become the most vibrant, active Jewish community in Eastern Queens. YIJE’s warm, welcoming family atmosphere has succeeded on attracting young Jewish families to its unique combination of commitment to traditional Jewish values with a modern, creative, and dynamic approach.

YIJE is renowned not only for serving as a model of Chesed within its own neighborhood, but for its demonstrated commitment to larger Jewish causes, including serving unaffiliated Queens youth and families, the State of Israel and its citizens, and recent immigrants from around the world, in the finest historic Jewish tradition. At the same time, YIJE provides an unparalleled array of services for all ages from the youngest tiny tots to the most elderly senior citizens. The boundless energy and exceptional creativity of its membership has fostered Young Israel of Jamaica Estates as a permanent Jewish Center for social, education, religious and social welfare activities with an open, broad and far-sighted vision for the future, providing a full range of community outreach, including education, special programs, and chesed opportunities (such as visiting the home-bound, meal delivery, etc.) to the entire community.

Young Israel of Jamaica Estates offers creative and diverse educational and social programming every day of the week, led by Rabbi Lerner, lay members of the Congregation, as well as well-known guest lecturers and scholars-in-residence. YIJE’s Coalition for Israel Action initiated and helped create the foundation for the Queens-wide JCC’s Israel Action Committee. Our annual Memorial Day L’Chaim 5K Run for Israel has become a major citywide event, with a full day of activities including a race and concert. Together with its annual clothing drive and other fundraisers, YIJE has raised nearly a million dollars for terrorist victims and their families, as well as medical and security needs in Israel.

YIJE’s youth program has been hailed nationwide as a model for successful synagogue-based youth programming, for hundreds of children ranging from pre-school through collegiate age groups, including religious programming; a year-round competitive sports program including soccer, baseball, basketball, and hockey; several trips per year; and many opportunities for our youth to connect with the Jewish community at large and prepare them for future leadership. Through its affiliation with Yachad, the Sara Domb Youth Department provides activities for young disabled Jews through the entire city, including Shabbaton weekends and other events. YIJE is also proud to house Queens J.E.P., the Jewish Education Program for public school children supplementing their education with formal and informal Jewish programming, in its mission of reaching out to the entire Jewish population, regardless of denomination, origin or observance level.

YIJE has welcomed a growing contingent of members from the former Soviet Union who arrived in this country knowing little about their Judaism but desire to form a connection with their fellow Jews, as well as those of varied backgrounds who have chosen YIJE to be their house of worship as well as the center of their Jewish communal life because they appreciate its traditional focus and wide range of educational and social programming.

YIJE is permeated by a warm, inclusive atmosphere with members who span the ideological, religious and demographic spectrum, and who, together, share a profound sense of joy in belonging to a large, extended family.

Sat, July 13 2024 7 Tammuz 5784