Introducing the Virtual OJA


May 15, 2020

virtual oja
Jewish community parade to commemorate the Balfour Declaration (St. Catharines, ON), 1917. Ontario Jewish Archives, Blankenstein Family Heritage Centre, item 417. Photograph by Franklin Caplan.

The Ontario Jewish Archives, Blankenstein Family Heritage Centre is the largest repository of Jewish life in Canada.

This spring has brought with it both change and uncertainty. Despite the challenges that come with remote working, the Ontario Jewish Archives (OJA) has continued to do what we do best – connect you to your history. New virtual learning opportunities, online programming, and podcasts are all part of our effort to bring the many fascinating stories out of our vaults and into your homes. Stay tuned for more new programming and content!

Learn from the comfort of your home about how the Jewish community has navigated this global pandemic, the historic role of the famed Standard Theatre in Toronto, and the many ways that food has historically shaped the Jewish experience.

COVID-19 Documentation Project
The OJA has been collecting the province’s Jewish history for over 45 years. During this challenging and unprecedented time, it is essential that we capture, in real time, the impact COVID-19 is having on our community. From Zoom Brit Milot and baby namings to Zoom weddings and shivas, the OJA is committed to ensuring these moments are collected and preserved in perpetuity. Submit your thoughts, photos, journals, tweets, facebook posts, and videos and preserve your experience of living through the COVID-19 pandemic.

OJA Podcasts
Explore the fascinating stories of Ontario’s Jewish community through the OJA’s series of podcasts. Long-form or bite-sized, each podcast examines the histories told through the collections of the OJA.

OJA Colouring Pages
Enjoy this new series of colouring pages made by OJA Archivist Kara Isozaki of digitized photographs from our collections. Check back often for new pages!

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