JTA — Earlier this month, Bahrain’s Jewish community celebrated the first Jewish wedding in the country in 52 years. The community, along with the Jewish communities in other Gulf countries, is hoping its next project will lead to more weddings.
The Association of Gulf Jewish Communities launched a new dating website for Jewish singles in the Gulf Sunday, called Jewish Singles in the Gulf. The site will allow single Jews in the area to fill out a questionnaire, which a group of matchmakers will then use to match up participants.
The aim of the site is to encourage Jews in the Gulf countries to put down roots there. While countries in the area like Bahrain have long been home to Jewish communities, those countries have historically remained small. But with the increased visibility that has come with normalization agreements between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, as well as Bahrain, the Jewish communities in those countries are hoping their numbers will increase.
Leaders of the community hope that dating and marrying other Jews from the Gulf will increase the number of children from those communities who choose to stay there as adults.
“By helping these singles find their spouses in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council), they are more likely to get married here and establish their families here, which in turn grows Jewish communal life and the need for more Jewish institutions like schools, kosher food, etc,” Ebrahim Dawood Nonoo, president of the Association of Gulf Jewish Communities said in a statement.