01/25/2011 | | Lens

Alex Rabinovich says there were about 50 gymnastics clubs in his native Kiev, 10 alone in his neighborhood, when his family left Ukraine for the United States two decades ago. His father’s club, Spartak, was one of Kiev’s top gymnastics training facilities, he says.

01/18/2011 | | Lens

For 10 years, like a child of divorce whose parents share custody, Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan Head Steven Lorch, top right, was constantly shuttling back and forth from one home to another, crossing Central Park at least once, often twice, a day.

Now, with the Conservative day school’s nine grades finally united in one permanent space, on the sunny second floor of a brand-new building at Columbus Avenue and 100th Street, Lorch says he can “do the job I was hired to do: be a principal.”

01/11/2011 | | Lens

About 300 residents of Israel gathered in Tel Aviv to support a political election 1,200 miles away.

The natives of southern Sudan, who have found refuge — both legal and illegal — from their war-ravaged African nation in recent years in Israel, sang and danced in Tel Aviv’s Levinsky Park to celebrate the start of a week-long independence referendum in their homeland. If the referendum passes, the largely Christian part of Africa’s largest country will secede from mostly Muslim northern Sudan.

Which will probably be good news for Israel.

01/04/2011 | | Lens

The wall at their back is about 2,000 years old; the documents in their hands are brand new.

Hours after they arrived in Israel as part of 2010’s last group of immigrants, this group of the country’s newest citizens celebrated at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, flashing their Israeli ID cards.

Last year was a good year for aliyah — more than 19,000 Jews from around the world became olim chadashim, or new immigrants. It marked the second consecutive year of an increase in aliyah, after a previous decade of decreases.

12/28/2010 | | Lens

As this week’s blizzard blanketed New York City in snow, Jewish Community Councils and other organizations scrambled to continue providing much-needed services in the hardest-hit neighborhoods, as well as meet emergency needs.

12/21/2010 | | Lens

The Israeli swimmers at an international championship last week didn’t take home any gold, silver or bronze — but they made history with blue and white.

For the first time, swimmers from the Jewish state competed in the World Short Course Swimming Championship, held in Dubai, and for the first time the Israeli flag hung poolside in the Arab country.

And, though they finished outside of the medals, Israeli swimmers swam well, by Israeli standards, setting several national records.