July 23, 2024
Yasher Koach to the Brotherhood of Kol Ami for earning a FJMC Silver Torch Award for "Firearms Safety Day"

The Kol Ami Brotherhood of Tampa, Florida was recently honored to receive a Silver “Torch Award” from the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs (FJMC) for outstanding Club programming. The Torch Award was presented in front of nearly 400 delegates at the 2023 FJMC Biennial Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The FJMC Torch Award was created to encourage the development of innovative programming, to recognize Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods that develop quality programming, build community and support the growth and development of their clubs.

Kol Ami Brotherhood President Jon Zimmer explains the details of the Brotherhood’s highly successful “Firearm Safety Day” program:

“For the 5th year, the Brotherhood of Kol Ami has put together a Firearm Safety Day, open to men, women, and teenagers (w/ parental permission). Open to all synagogue members and certain teenagers (w/ parental permission), a certified instructor/staff members gives us instruction on proper firearm safety and the rules of the range, and helps first timers during range time.

The overall goal of the program was twofold: Give our several members that own and/or are familiar with firearms practice time on the range to improve their skills, and to instruct first timers on proper firearm safety and how to handle a gun. The event is not political and we take no stance on any gun laws. It’s designed to not only practice and learn proper safety and skills, but to bond and grow with our fellow shul members.

The Kol Ami Brotherhood is prepared, are you?

The program has been running five years straight. It’s a signature event and looked forward to every year. People have asked for offshoot/similar events, such as skeet shooting. We have had several first timers throughout the years that have never picked up a gun, including women and teenage children whose parents brought them. This year, we had 18 people participate, including two children and their mother, both first time shooters. We have received several compliments that they appreciate the value in people being properly trained in use of a firearm in today’s unfortunate age of rising incidents of anti-Semitism.

This program is innovative due to its uniqueness. Kol Ami is not the only shul to have this type of program, but it is not common. Most of the participants who attend own a gun, and it’s good bonding and “shop talk” to get information on types of guns and the industry in general. We have had as many as 38 people attend in the past.(pre-Covid). It absolutely is a community building event. We also have a strict rule of no political talk on gun laws, gun violence incidents, etc, as this event is for learning safety, skills, practce, and bonding with our fellow Jews, not being divisive.

While the topic of guns may be controversial to some, this event is about learning safety and practicing in a proper, regulated gun range. I am proud of this event and the fact it is commonly spoken highly of in our shul.”

Yasher Koach to the Brotherhood of Kol Ami on this well deserved honor.

Men’s Club is Brotherhood. Jon Zimmer is the President of the Kol Ami Brotherhood of Tampa, Florida as well as Vice President and Yellow Candle Chairman for the Florida Region of FJMC. Learn more about the Kol Ami Brotherhood at https://www.kolami.org/brotherhood.html and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/kolamitampa/. For more information about the Kol Ami Brotherhood, please email Brotherhood President Jon Zimmer at brotherhood.kolami@gmail.com.

The Kol Ami Brotherhood of Tampa, Florida is a proud member of the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs (FJMC), a global confederation of over 200 Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods representing over 20,000 members across the United States, Canada, Latin America and beyond. Learn more about how your Men’s Club or Brotherhood can affiliate at: https://fjmc.org/for-clubs/affiliating-with-the-fjmc/.

The Florida Region of the FJMC serves the needs of affiliated Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods throughout the State of Florida.  Learn more about the Florida Region of FJMC and our growing network of dynamic Jewish Men’s Clubs on our website www.floridaregionfjmc.org and please visit and LIKE our Facebook Group at www.facebook.com/FloridaRegionFJMC.

About Post Author