Rabbi Meir Shlomo Kluwgant is a familiar face within Melbourne’s Jewish community and at local police stations. The long-time Jewish Care Rabbi spends his spare time building closer ties between police and the Jewish community as a volunteer police chaplain.
That behind-the-scenes work has now been publicly recognised by Victoria Police, which has awarded him a Police Community Exemplary Award.
Chief Commissioner Ken Lay presented it to him at Government House.
Rabbi Kluwgant has been a police chaplain since 2009 and is responsible for five police stations – Caulfield, Bayside, Prahran, Moorabbin and Malvern.
The role has seen him help police in times of personal crisis and in their interactions with the Jewish community; attend police training sessions; work with new recruits and initiate an annual ‘cops and rabbis’ luncheon that brings more than 100 local police and members of the orthodox and wider Jewish community together.
“My work as chaplain for Victoria Police is something I enjoy doing,” he said.
“It is not something I do for awards or accolades. In fact I consider it a privilege to be able to give something back to the men and women who put their lives on the line every day to ensure the safety of the community.”