ESRA's Special Volunteer Awards
Volunteer Awards 2014
ESRA's 2014 VOLUNTEER AWARDS CEREMONY took place on Thursday 4 December 2014 at Mifal Hapayis, Hachayil St. in Raanana.
Introductions were made by ESRA Chair Brenda Katten, ESRA Life President Merle Guttmann and Mayor of Raanana, Ze'ev Bielski. The audience was entertained after the ceremony by the 'Chord-ially Yours' A Capella Ensemble.
was born in Israel in 1951, lives in Kfar Saba. Married to Meir with three daughters and three grandchildren. Rika worked worked as a teacher for 14 years and then for 20 years as a teacher for adult immigrants in Ra’anana. She has adopted immigrant families and volunteers at “Bayit shel Benji” in Ra’anana. Rika says “For my soul, I did challenge sports in “Etgarim” for 10 years such as rappelling, skiing and sailing"
For the past four years, Rika has been a volunteer in the ESRA Shop in Ra’anana. In spite of being dependent on the use of a walker, she collects parcels of goods for sale in the shop. At times these parcels are large and heavy. She goes to addresses in Ra’anana, Kfar Saba, Ramat Hasharon, Kfar Shmarayahu, and even as far as Tel Aviv. Nothing is too much for her, she does it with all her heart, and she is always smiling and cheerful. If she is not well, her husband Meir assists her, and they describe their involvement as “a family affair”. Her Manager describes her as an amazing person, who is very well-informed and an excellent conversationalist, and she is much loved by all the staff in the shop.
was born in Shanghai, China, where she grew up, married and gave birth to her eldest child. After the Communist takeover of China in 1949, life became extremely difficult for foreign nationals, and, being British citizens, the family emigrated to London in 1951. They lived there for five years, and their eldest daughter was born in London. The family made aliyah in 1956, and two other children were born in Israel.
Flori worked as Managerial Assistant for two very large Israeli companies for over 50 years.
Being on her own, she moved to be closer to one of her children in Modi’in in 2007. Since the inception of ESRA Modi’in in 2009, she has been involved in a very broad range of activities, from media relations to business support. She is a key member, a major asset and an untiring ambassador for ESRA and its activities. She is described as being “immensely energetic, conscientious, enthusiastic, accomplished and creative”. Among her many activities are: “window-dressing” the Ethiopian craft cabinet, shouldering the burden of set-up and clean-up for events, maintaining relationships with the press in Hebrew and English, and is a frequent and generous supporter of Neve Esra, the ESRA afternoon care centre for kids at risk.
was born in Cape Town, studied at UCT and made aliyah in 1973. Lives in Rehovot, with her husband Benny (also an ESRA volunteer). They have three daughters and five grandchildren. Lucille is a retired Hospital Social Worker. She states that her life is filled with grandchild-minding, bridge, travelling, attending lectures, reading and volunteering.
Lucille has been an active member of the ESRA Rehovot Board since the inception of the branch. Her pet project is the Moadonit
, which provides after school programs for disadvantaged and problem elementary children. Over the years she has spent countless hours visiting them to assess how ESRA can help, buying needed items for their premises, such as furniture and computers, and communicating and consulting with the social workers involved. She has helped to create a warm, homely atmosphere, and helped the children to value and respect their “home” and to treat the purchases with great care. She brings her professional training and experience to her volunteering for ESRA, thereby making a major contribution.
Some activities are: the initiation of a garden in Kiryat Moshe (an underprivileged neighbourhood in Rehovot) to encourage “garden therapy”; the collection of clothing for those inadequately dressed; the rehabilitation of a traditional Ethiopian hut used as a tool for communication between troubled and disconnected youth and their parents and organization of a trip for ESRA and a donation to the Rehovot agricultural farm.
and his wife Natalie Wood (he says “no, not that one!) made aliyah in 2010 from Manchester and now live in Karmiel in the lower Galilee. They moved to Israel upon Brian’s retirement as a bookseller and publisher’s agent. He writes a monthly piece on Israeli life for the magazine of their former synagogue in Manchester, which awarded both of them Life Membership upon their aliyah for their work there.
Brian is a founder member of the ESRA Karmiel Committee. He attends regularly and contributes to the monthly meetings with ideas and practical help. He also acts as Minutes secretary. He assists with setting up the room and clearing up afterwards at events and activities.
He initiated the Annual Quiz, which he has been running for over 4 years, each time bringing in larger audiences. He devises the questions and acts as Quizmaster. Most recently he organized a Car Treasure Hunt, which will hopefully become an annual event.
He also volunteers with English speaking High School students in Karmiel and is volunteering at the Karmiel Children’s Village, for which ESRA Karmiel Branch raises funds.
(nee Rubenstein) was born in Johannesburg, married Gerald Fredman in 1954 and came on aliyah in 1959 with an 11 month old son, Danny, and settled in Haifa. Two more children were born in Israel. Danny was a fighter pilot and was killed while still serving in the airforce in 1983. In 2000 they moved to Zichron and Gerald died shortly thereafter.
Marion is a speech therapist. (B.A. and M.A. Wits. and PhD. Bar Ilan). Before retirement she was in charge of speech therapists at the Hanna Khoushy Child Development at Bnei Zion Hospital in Haifa. She continued to work privately and was very active in IALP (International Association of Logopedics and Phoniatrics) as Chair of the Multilingual Affairs Committee.
Marion joined ESRA in 2006 and took on the task of selling Ethiopian handicrafts from her home. Since the opening of the bookshop in 2008, she has been a keen and dedicated supporter of the project. She became one of its two co-managers, and has taken the responsibility of organizing the roster of workers, which she continues to do, even since the bookshop relocated to Binyamina. She invariably covers for those on holiday or who are unavailable, and sorts out donations, which are dumped in bags or boxes.
Marion states that “keeping the bookshop running smoothly is my main contribution to ESRA and to the community”.
was born in Sydney and emigrated to Israel in 1966. Geeta married her Israeli husband, Shimon, in 1971. They have four children and six grandchildren, all living in Israel.
Geeta worked with the management of the Military Industries and later with the Director General of the Weizmann Institute. In 1987 Geeta joined the Sharon Hotel, Herzliya, working directly with the owner, the late Sir Bernard Schreier and his representative. She became the Business Department Manager there until her retirement in 2003.
Geeta joined ESRA in 2003 where she worked in the office and in magazine distribution. She also volunteers as a Befriender for ESRA.
was born in Melbourne, Australia and made aliyah with his wife Chana and three children from Perth in 1972. Their three children are married and there are eight grandchildren (one married) and all living in Israel. Joe retired from Dentistry in 1989.
He has been involved in ESRA since its inception, previously mainly with the distribution of magazines. For the past 11 years, Joe has been a “permanent volunteer” in the Gan Rashal office doing “computer work” (in his words). Probably a more accurate description of his contribution comes from the staff in the Gan Rashal office. He is in the office any time from 5.30 am. He volunteers in the accounts department with receipting of activities, campaigns and database input. He issues membership cards and helps with magazine distribution. No job is too large or too small for Joe. He works independently and stays until his work is completed, and even takes work home when there are large mailings, spending hours filling envelopes.
Joe states that ESRA offers a great deal to the English speakers and after retirement voluntary work in many ways is a lifesaver and almost all the volunteers love their work and are appreciative of having it.
was born in Cape Town, is married to Avron, and they have lived in Israel for 45 years. Their home is in Kfar Saba and they have three children and four grandsons. Cecily is a retired music therapist, and has worked with severely handicapped, non-verbal children and youth.
Cecily has been a member of ESRA for 25 years and actively involved for about 20 years. She led the ESRA Garden Club until it ceased activities 5 years ago, and she received an ESRA volunteer award in 2004 for this contribution. She has long been a member of the Ra’anana and Kfar Saba committees. She has worked on the Ethiopian Embroidery Project for a number of years.
Since joining the Programme Committee some years ago, Cecily has suggested ideas for travel, organized and planned day trips and led them. The trips are most successful and popular and are invariably sold out, with a waiting list. She spends countless hours on the travel programme, carefully researching and preparing each itinerary. She is appreciative of the help and backup from the staff and volunteers at Beit Fisher.
was born in Bethal, South Africa and came on aliyah at the age of 13 years in 1969, with his mother and brother, Jonathan. He is married to Brenda and they have three children. Their home is in Neve Amirim in Herzliya. Leslie was an Attorney and Notary and was in full time practice for 24 years.
Although Leslie suffered an aneurism several years ago he has made great strides in his recovery process and today is an asset to ESRA in many areas.
He has been volunteering with ESRA’s Kfar Shmaryahu Handicapped Group for over three years, where he is greatly appreciated. Leslie rides to the center with one of the special cars taking the young participants. He has become an integral part of the group’s activities and has given many hours of dedicated volunteering in the group. The youngsters love him, he keeps in contact with them throughout the week on Facebook and never misses a week if he can possibly help it. He also volunteers once a week for ESRA in Ramat Hasharon, helping pupils to prepare for their oral Bagrut exam.
Sam Kirsch was born and grew up in South Africa. He is married to Denise and they have three children and four grandchildren. The family made aliyah in 1977 and have lived in Ra’anana since 1978.
Sam is a qualified chartered accountant, and has also completed the Costs and Works Examination and the Israeli CPA. Earlier this year, Sam received a Municipal Ra’anana Award for Volunteerism.
He has been volunteering on the ESRA Control Committee for the past seven years. The Registrar of Amutot in Israel requires that a Control Committee certifies that business is conducted in terms of an Amuta’s constitution and recommends adoption of the Annual Financial Statements. Sam has performed many audits of the various activities of ESRA and recommended changes and improvements that have contributed to making our organization more secure and efficient. He performs these tasks with energy and responsibility. He has regularly been attending meetings of the Finance and Executive Committees over this entire period.
is single, and came on aliyah to Israel in 1964. She studied occupational therapy in Jerusalem and has spent most of her professional years working in the field of pediatrics. She retired in 2007.
For over five years Geeta and Bernice
have worked as a team, complementing each other, and have been responsible for the administration of the distribution of the ESRA magazine in the central area. The process is long and complicated and entails many, many hours of intricate and tedious communication with the magazine packers, bundle deliverers and distributors. They spend hours sending e-mails and making phone calls; they prepare thousands of labels and lists for packers, and on packing day they work extremely hard. They oversee the whole project, five times a year, and are involved in all the aspects, from dividing the premises according to areas to physically carrying magazines. They have developed personal relationships with many of the magazine team, and their attitude draws other volunteers to return. The work is exhausting and sometimes frustrating but they manage to run it efficiently and find means of overcoming obstacles
JACK RABINOWITZ and his wife Esther made aliya from Manchester in 1983, and have lived in Ra’anana since then. They have three children, all married. Two of their children are in Israel and the third is hopefully making aliyah in 2015. Jack worked as a dentist in Hadera for 16 years, before retiring in 2000. Esther has volunteered in the ESRA bookshop, since its inception.
Jack took over the mid-week hiking group 15 years ago and he ran it for over 10 years. It is an important activity for those who do not travel on Shabbat, and who want to make new friends and have healthy exercise. He still walks with the group.
Jack organised seven hikes per year, with an average of thirty participants per hike. His patience and kindness are legendary. He showed understanding to those who found it difficult and was firm and encouraging with those who preferred a faster pace.
Jack’s dedication and commitment to the group were remarkable, and Lawrence Bertfield, who has succeeded Jack, describes him as “a Mensch in all aspects”.
came to Israel from South Africa in 1978 with her husband Max, who is now deceased, and four children. She currently lives in Kfar Saba.
Jean has been an active member of ESRA for the past five years. She has taken the responsibility of being the co-ordinator for the very successful Kfar Saba/Hod Hasharon Open House programme. This involves calling, e-mailing and setting up dates with prospective speakers and presenters. It also entails ensuring that the facility is properly prepared for the speakers and that all runs smoothly. She has brought many very interesting speakers to this programme.
Jean also transports other ladies to the bi-monthly ESRA magazine packing, and she participates in that activity. She also participates in the ESRA English tutoring project as well as teaches Mahjong. She is always ready to assist the Branch activities in whatever other ways are needed.
AUDREY GOODMAN ז''ל
- ESRA SPECIAL AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING VOLUNTEERING: 2014
The decision to give Audrey Goodman ESRA’s Special Award for Outstanding Volunteering was made several months before her sudden and untimely death a short month ago. When she was advised that she was to be the recipient of this award, her response was characteristically modest. She wrote:
‘I was so surprised to receive your email from the office that I am speechless. Thank you very much for your very kind letter and the honour of a special award’.
Audrey, a graduate of Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, came on aliyah from Columbus Ohio in 1969, with her husband, Richard, and their three sons, Jeffrey, Daniel and David.
While their sons were at school, Audrey worked for Keren HaYishuv (the Rothschild Foundation) and for the Department of Family Medicine at Tel Aviv University. She was also part of the team to establish the Open University.
After her husband passed away, Audrey continued to be a source of inspiration and strength to her family. She was the proud grandmother of 13 grandchildren and great-grandmother to 4 great-grandchildren.
In the early 1990s Audrey attended the ESRA programmes at Beit Malinov, which were organised by Hazel Cameron, and she also volunteered as an English tutor at a Ramat Hasharon elementary school. When Hazel retired, Audrey stepped in to organise and expand the lecture series and inaugurate end-of-year parties to honour local volunteers.
During the 1990s, she served with Adele Hunter as co-chairperson of ESRA, and she also served as chairperson.
From that time and until this year, Audrey was a member of the executive committee of ESRA, and of the magazine editorial board, as well as being the co-ordinator of the cultural programmes and chairperson of the programme committee.
For many years she was the chairperson of the ESRA Branch Forum, but with the expansion of the branches into regions in 2012, that position fell away.
Audrey was someone with a great spirit of innovativeness. In March 2005, she started the ESRA Cinema Club which has shown many outstanding films over the years. It has been an extremely popular activity, always supported by packed audiences.
In 2006, she helped to establish the ESRA - Moadon Hazahav English-speaking College in Ra’anana. This has become a thriving and hugely popular activity which draws large and enthusiastic crowds on Monday mornings.
Audrey’s constant goal was to bring to English speakers a variety and a high level of English programmes. She succeeded in achieving this goal to a remarkable extent.
She brought the activity of volunteering to a new and greatly elevated standard and status, and was a major and highly valued asset to ESRA. She was held in the highest esteem by all and her presence will be sorely missed.
Volunteer Awards 2010
Ros & Henry Ben Ezra
Australians, Ros and Henry married in 1967 on Israel Independence Day, immediately coming to volunteer in Israel during the Six Day War, staying on for a couple of years as teachers in Nahariya.
Back in Australia they completed their studies and started a family, making aliya in 1974, Both worked in their profession as High School teachers until their retirement. Now, they divide their time between six grandchildren, gardening, gym, quilting (Ros), carpentry (Henry) and volunteering for ESRA.
They work together in ESRA's Right-Track Centers in Netanya.
Ros also organizes the 'English Without Borders' tutoring program, a joint venture between ESRA and AACI where volunteers are placed in Netanya schools to help pupils with their conversational English. Henry is chairman of ESRA branch in Netanya.
Annette was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and made aliya in 1971 with her husband, Morris, and 3 daughters. She lives in Tel Aviv and has 5 grandchildren.
Annette was administrative assistant to a UNDP project for improving and developing computer professionals and was captivated by the field of systems analysis. She became a programmer and systems analyst in 1978 and worked for many different organizations.
Since retiring, Annette has volunteered her professional knowledge to help create and maintain database systems for many organizations including ESRA.
Shuka was born in Israel and educated at the Tel Aviv University receiving both a BA Economics, an MBA and graduated Bank Hapoalim’s Managers' Training course.
He has 30 years of experience as V.P. & C.F.O in leading private and public companies, in the fields of: industry, communications and hi-tech, and also served as a senior management member, and controlled groups of employees of various sizes. Shuka completed his army service as a Major (retired) and was Communication Chief Officer of an armored brigade. He joined ESRA as a Treasurer 4 years ago and devotes many hours to the organization
Susan grew up in Manchester., England, where she volunteered in the Citizen’s Advice Bureau for eighteen years and later with the Probation and Aftercare Service helping battered wives and other disadvantaged people.
After completing DSS tribunals Susan became a magistrate, a position she held for 20 years. She is a founder member of Care Concern, a bereavement support group where she trained as a counselor.
Susan and Pincus made aliya 4 years ago to join their children in Israel. She was introduced to ESRA on an ESRA trip to the Dead Sea. Susan initiated a support and counseling project which she developed and has coordinated with great success for the last three years. The group today has 14 counselors who have helped dozens of individuals.
(Recipient of Raanana 'Alan Katz Trophy')
Freda and her husband Ralph made aliya from Pretoria, South Africa in June 1980. Whilst still at the Mercaz Klita in Raanana they attended an ESRA meeting and became long standing volunteers, starting with delivering magazines in Raanana. When the Russian immigration began Freda helped first in the shop in the miklat in Bar Ilan Street as well as taking requests for assistance by needy Russian immigrants. Freda has been a volunteer in the Raanana office for many years and was ESRA Raanana Branch's first chairperson.
Born in Wynberg, Capetown, Aliza joined the Zionist youth movement at age 10, the beginning of a life-long relationship. On leaving school, she joined the staff of the local Zionist Office and became editor of a youth magazine which was designed to maintain contact with young Jews who lived in small communities far from the cities. Readers would write to her (and every letter was answered) and take part in the competitions; many of those readers live in Israel today.
In 1956 Aliza and her late husband David, came on aliya and settled on a small moshav 5 kms north of Netanya where they both took active part in their community. In 1995 Aliza joined the ESRA Ethiopian Embroidery Project and spent 14 years helping make it the success that it is today. For the last 2 years she has single-handedly coordinated the running of the shop in Netanya.
Aggie van Der Laan
Aggie van Der Laan was born in Hungary and is a Holocaust Survivor. She lived in the United States and Brazil before making aliya. A retired hotel professional and volunteer community worker, Aggie joined ESRA Tel Aviv 12 years ago and is a Tel Aviv Branch committee member, events coordinator and organizes the lectures and museum visits. Aggie is also a member of ESRA's Program Committee.
Hannah and Les made Aliya 31 years ago from Australia, with 5 of their 6 children.
Although a maths and science teacher Hannah became a full time Mum, and enjoyed gardening which prepared her for her venture in Israel. They had intended to be semi-retired after making aliya, and use their expertise for growing plants suitable for Israel's soil and climate conditions. This venture took off after a number of years and resulted in a very large and diverse nursery. In time they handed over the running of the nursery to their son. She then formed HANNAH'S ESRA NURSERY and volunteers were found to help there. Although the nursery has now closed, Hannah together with a volunteer, continues to grow and develop plants.
Ruth was born and grew up in Liverpool, England. Her first teenage taste of volunteering was with the Jewish Youth Voluntary Service, painting the homes of clients of the social services, and with the 35's in which her mother was active. After university she moved to London where she qualified as a chartered accountant and married Francis.
Ruth and Francis made aliya in 1982. Ruth worked for many years in various financial positions during which time their 2 girls and son were born. Whilst taking a break from work in 2004 she became active in ESRA, coordinating the volunteer English tutoring in Raanana and giving invaluable assistance to the Volunteer Division. She also jointly founded and developed the ESRAlist.
Volunteer Awards 2007
Vera and her husband Joey have lived in Ra'anana for most of the thirty years
they've been in Israel. She remembers the start of ESRA and is delighted to be
involved with its magnificent work. Her four children are all married and three
of them live in or near Ra'anana so she spends a lot of time with her seven
grandchildren. Vera was with the Sharon Players for many years, worked in drama
for children and, more recently, has taught English to adults. She says that
giving her an award for volunteering the bookshop is like rewarding a child for
working in a sweetshop.
Ruth was born in the UK and after qualifying as a radiographer, came to Israel
under the first PATWA scheme. She spent 6 months in Beersheva, then worked for
6 months and decided to make her home in Israel. Ruth also spent many years
working for the British Council in Tel Aviv. Ruth has two children who now live
in the UK. After retirement, Ruth started lending a hand at the ESRA shop in
Born in Brooklyn, NY, Annice made aliya from Columbus, Ohio in 1980, with her
husband Ira and two of their three children. In Columbus she worked as a
computer programmer. In Israel, Annice was employed as a computer programmer
and user consultant at the Weizmann Institute until her retirement in 1999.
Since then, she and her husband have been traveling fairly extensively – to the
U.S. to visit their children and 8 grandchildren and to other countries and
continents. Annice has been a committee member of the ESRA Rehovot-area branch
since its inception, and has served as secretary and publicity chairman. She
gives lessons on request in using popular computer software with the proceeds
going to ESRA. She is also the Assistant Editor of the Rehovot Reporter, a
publication of the Rehovot English-speaking community and writes an Internet
column and restaurant reviews for that periodical.
Bess was born in Cape Town, South Africa and made aliya via London in 1969 with
her husband Eddy and 3 young children. After a few years settling in to life in
Israel and going from ulpan to ulpan to learn Hebrew, she decided to learn
subjects in Hebrew. She studied to become a tour guide and subsequently worked
as one for 20 years. The two intifadas brought her guiding work to an end and
she turned to volunteering at ESRA. She is on the programs committee, using her
guiding skills and on the Herzliya committee organizing events to raise funds
for ESRA projects. She also helps with distribution of the magazine. Her
greatest "claim to fame" are her 5 wonderful grandchildren.
Carl grew up in Boston and was educated in New York and Philadelphia. He
has worked as a university lecturer in the United States, an anthropologist in
Indonesia, and as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines – followed by a
series of odd jobs with the U.S. State Department Refugee Programs, the
Philippine Department of Education, and the Japanese Embassy in Manila. Carl
made aliyah to Israel with his wife and two children around ten years ago. He
currently spends his days as a freelance writer, an English teacher, and as an
Shirley made aliyah from South Africa in 1969. Having felt the warmth from many
volunteers who helped her to successfully integrate Israel, she too wanted to
respond and volunteer and give back as much as possible. Shirley says that
volunteering in itself is most rewarding, especially when you see the
satisfaction and positive results of the efforts." She represented Israel in
the World Bowls Championship and in the Maccabiah Games and says she is blessed
to have all her children and grandchildren in Israel.
Ariel grew up in the UK and is a graduate of Leeds University and the Institute
for Youth Leaders in Jerusalem. He was active in the IUJF Jewish students
organization in the UK and later as Foreign Affairs Secretary of the World Union
of Jewish Students, Foreign Affairs Officer of the National Union of Israeli
Students and Member of the Executive of the International Student Movement for
the United Nations. He joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1971 and
served as a diplomatic officer for 32 years, including 10 years as Israel's
ambassador to Ethiopia and various other African countries, as well as several
stints in Israel's missions to the United Nations. He retired in 2003 and moved
to Ra'anana where he became active in ESRA as Founder and Coordinator of the
Photography Group and as a volunteer teacher.
Jane made aliyah in November 2003. She was quickly drafted onto the brand new
Caesarea branch committee of which she is now the co-chair. In the UK she began
her professional career as a classical concert promoter, later running a
specialist classical music PR company and finally in the early 1990s turning to
arts festival management. She was director of the Windsor Festival, The
Hampstead and Highgate Festival and, prior to her aliyah, director of the Jewish
Arts Festival. She writes occasional articles for the ESRA magazine and is
currently Chair of the 30th Anniversary Committee, planning celebrations for
ESRA's big birthday event taking place on Wednesday October 29 next year.
Mignon was born in Stephney, London and, after completing her schooling, she
worked in London for a few years and then moved to Zurich, Switzerland where she
married. Her daughter made aliyah in 1972. In 1985, Mignon & her husband also
made aliyah. With her good command of German, Mignon found work with a company
dealing with restitution from Germany. She retired after 19 years and, having
heard of ESRA, became a volunteer performing secretarial work in the Gan Rashal
office. Mignon has one granddaughter who recently presented her with a great
Liz made aliyah from Manchester, England in 1984 with her husband Terry and
their children Adam and Debbie. In England, Liz worked as a designer for a
raincoat manufacturer, then an art teacher and, before making aliyah, she had
established and run a Jewish nursery school. In Israel she has taught ceramics,
made home furnishings and currently works at Beth Hatefutsoth as a guide and
coordinator for volunteers. Her involvement in ESRA started with delivering the
magazines in the first year of aliyah and has continued to this day. For the
past 2 1/2 yrs she has been the co-coordinator for the ESRA project Bayit Ham,
an after school club for teenage girls from distressed families in Netanya.
Esther is from Manchester, England and before making aliyah, she was involved in
social work with the aged and a meals on wheels service. After making aliyah
with her husband Jack in 1983 to Ra'anana, she worked for 17 years in the Lord
Kitch T-shirt shop. She now volunteers at the ESRA book shop whilst her
husband, Jack, organizes the mid week ESRA tiyulim. She has 3 children, 9
grandchildren and is a very on tap savta !
Rosemary has lived in Israel since 1985 and is a freelance graphic designer. She
has contributed her professional know-how by designing cards for the Ethiopian
Embroidery project and producing the "ESRA Works."
Juliet was born in Rhodesia, attended university receiving a Masters degree. She
practiced as a Registered Industrial Psychologist in South Africa from 1983 to
the time of her aliyah in June 2003. She enjoyed every aspect of her work which
included training, assessment, career guidance & planning, organizational
development and consulting, personnel recruitment and assessment of loss of
earnings and earning capacity for legal purposes. She also has a post graduate
teaching qualification and has trained and worked as a marriage guidance and sex
education counselor. Married in 1961, Juliet & her husband have 3 married
children (2 in Israel, 1 in Canada) with families that have given them the
pleasure of 9 grandchildren.
Lynette immigrated to Israel from South Africa in April 2004 and lives in
Ra'anana. She is an ardent Zionist, has 4 children, 3 of whom live in South
Africa and 8 grandchildren.
A native New Yorker, Ivy completed a BA degree at Hunger College, NY., married,
moved to Chicago, Illinois where she raised 3 children over the next thirteen
years. From 1967 -74, Ivy was a pre-kindergarten teacher in the Hackensack, New
Jersey Public Schools system and worked on a program for raising educational
performances of inner-city children. For the next 20 years, as Director of
Early Childhood Programs for Day Care Centers and for Jewish Educational
Institutions, she designed, trained and administered bicultural and cognitive
development curriculum for the centers she directed. Retiring from education in
1995, Ivy became a Placement Counselor for "head hunting" otherwise known as
Personnel Recruiting and Placement industry in Manhattan. Finally retiring in
2005, Ivy made Aliyah. Ivy has 2 sons living in Israel and a daughter in the
USA and recently became a great grandmother. She is a happy member of ESRA,
which has provided her the opportunity to help out in the areas in which she is
trained and experienced.
Nurit was born in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia, currently the capital of Slovakia.
Her early adolescence was overshadowed by the horrors of war banishment from
her hometown, life in hiding as an illegal refugee in Budapest, parting with her
parents whom she never got to see again and then her inclusion in the Kastner's
rescue transport. She left Bergen-Belsen to freedom in Eretz Israel, via
Switzerland. She spent her first years in Palestine as a Kibbutz member; first
as a signals corps private in Kibbutz Tse'elim and then in Kvutsat Kfar
Hachoresh where she met Yaacov, also a holocaust survivor. They married and had
2 boys; Avner & Eran. Today, she is a grandmother of five, the oldest being 27
and the youngest is 2. In 1954, they left the kibbutz and moved to Kfar Saba,
where she was active in the Workers' Council and served as the coordinator of
the "Working Mothers Organization". In the early 1960s they moved to Kalmaniya
where they reside to this day. Nurit ran the post office in Moshav Tsufit until
the age of 77. Her husband passed away in 2005 after 57 years of marriage and
Nurit was looking for an occupation and found "ESRA".
Charles came from a "Dorp" (village) Ventersburg South Africa via Johannesburg
to Israel in July 1987 to settle in the country that his son Stanley adopted 6
years prior. He settled in "Raanana Fontein" and, after overcoming many
obstacles, is now enjoying the fruits of his retirement in good health and is
volunteering, on a daily basis, using his years of experience in accounting
procedures at the Ra'anana ESRA office.
Ilan is a born & bred Sabra. He grew up in Netanya and after his Army Service,
he lived in Denmark for 5 years where he learned his trade in carpentry and home
renovations. He came back to Israel and started his own business. He set up
home in Netanya with his Swiss wife and 4 beautiful children. During the course
of his work, he met many people who were either redoing their homes or moving.
They all had furniture, linens and other household goods to donate. He
approached someone from the ESRA organization to find homes for these items.
From then on, the romance has blossomed. Ilan advertises in the ESRA magazine
and works for many of its members.
Merle & her husband Jim made aliyah from Toronto, Canada in January 2005. Merle
retired in October 2004 after a very successful 29 year career with the Canadian
telephone company Bell Canada. She came through the door of the Gan Rashal ESRA
office during the 2nd Lebanon war full of willingness to help as needed. Merle
has been sharing the responsibility of managing the donations including
tracking, creating the donation cards and preparing the donation lists for
inclusion in the magazine. Merle enjoys the time she spends at Gan Rashal and
the friendship she shares with the staff and other volunteers at the office.
Cyril Solk, has been a member of ESRA since the first meeting with ESRA's
President, Merle Guttmann, some 30 years ago. He has been an active contributor,
helping for some time with coffee mornings arranged by Celia Kriss in aid of the
blind, his frequent help to the Golden Friendship Club, contribution to the
bridge mornings and very successfully tutoring in English grammar.
Sivia was born in London, England in 1931 and is married with 3 children and 5
grandchildren. She has been in Israel since 1955. She was the Secretary to the
Senate, Tel Aviv University and was active in ELEM and the Israel Centre for
Volunteerism, ESRA Ramat Hasharon Committee 1992 initially as Chairperson and a
member of the ESRA Welfare Committee. She also volunteers in Herzliya
municipality with social welfare activities.
Despite being only 17, Shai has a full resume of volunteer activities, primarily
via his involvement in the Herzliya Sea Scouts, Dakar. Combining his enthusiasm
for marine sports with his desire to help others, Shai has introduced both young
and "older" to the sea, organized social activities on dry land and is
recognized as a leader and role model by his peers.
Volunteer Awards 2005
Born in New York Pnina made Aliyah in 1968. Married, with 3 children, she is soon to be a grandmother. She’s a graduate of Brooklyn College (History), and the Hebrew University (Librarianship) and worked as a librarian for 29 years, including 20 years as librarian of the Israel Navy. Having taken early retirement 2.5 years ago, Pnina joined the Esra Kfar Saba Branch and became project coordinator of the Mo'adonit Kfar Saba in Sept. 2004.
Pat Arthur was born in Glasgow, Scotland and emigrated to Israel 30 years ago with husband Morris and daughter Joy. They also have a sabra son Daniel, who has just completed his army service. Pat had a 25 year career with the U.S. Airline TWA, working her way up through the ranks. At the time of TWA's demise she held the position of Manager Marketing and Sales for Israel/Turkey and was the only female management appointee during the 54 years TWA served Israel. Today she and her husband run a small company. Pat has been tutor in the English High School Project in Ra'anana Schools for several years and in 2005 she became the local coordinator.
Eric Cohen made Aliyah from Scotland in 1978. During his first 2 years in the country he worked as a painter and decorator followed by a short stay on a "moshav shitufi".
Eric began his book business, Eric Cohen Books Ltd., from his apartment in Raanana in 1980 with money lent to him by a friend. Today Eric Cohen Books Ltd. is Israel's largest publisher of English teaching books. In addition, the company exports to various countries in Europe and has become one of the leading publishers in its field in Europe.
Eric has become a committed supporter of ESRA's Right Track Project. Having come from a situation in 1980 when he had to borrow money in order to survive, Eric keenly appreciates how much a support system can help underprivileged young people fully discover and exploit their natural potential.
Before arriving in Israel in 1979, with David and their two daughters, she was very active in her home town, Leeds, U.K. She was the founder and first chairperson of the "35"s in Leeds which worked on behalf of the Prisoners of Zion in the former Soviet Union, as well as the founding first chairperson of the city's Ladies group Joint Israel Appeal and WIZO. In Israel, she volunteered at Beth Hatefutzot, where she later joined the permanent staff. Estelle then worked with David in his dental practice for over twenty years until his retirement four years ago. It was at that time that she became involved in establishing the Kiron/Savion branch of ESRA.
Born in Sydney, Australia, Geeta made Aliya in 1966. Prior to and during the Six day War she volunteered at the Israel Military Industries. A short while after she settled in Ashkelon working as a bilingual secretary for a subsidiary of the I.M.I and later at the Weitzman Institute of Science, Rehovot. After a period of 12 years at home bringing up 4 children, Geeta returned to the work force and joined the staff at the Sharon Hotel in Herzliya for 17 years, where she was Business Department Manager. Since her retirement in 2003 she has volunteered at ESRA's Gan Rashal Office and is also co-coordinator for the magazine distribution.
Born in South Africa, Ruth first came to Israel for two years with her husband Max in 1948 and was one of the founders of Kibbutz Timmorimon. Making Aliya in 1971 with two children, she volunteered at Wizo for 4 years as a secretary, then worked as a secretary to a dentist for 9 years followed by 17 years as a secretary of the English Department at AMIT headquarters. Upon retirement Ruth was both voluntary Chairman and Co-chairman of Wizo Raanana. For the past 6 years she has been volunteer at ESRA as a tutor in the schools in Raanana and works at the ESRA Raanana Office once a week.
Born in London, Sally grew up in South Wales. She made aliya together with her husband, Richard and small child in 1982. Later two more children were born after settling in Raanana. Sally has used her expertise in English in many different areas such as translation, narration and tutoring. Sally's involvement in Esravision began four years ago when she was co-opted to make a film about her Grandmother. She recently received an outstanding volunteer award from the Israel Association of Community TV and Radio for her work in Esravision.
ESRA acknowledges Kol Misgeret for their continued interest and respect for the Ethiopian Embroidery Project. The beautiful frames designed in their shop and their cooperation, contributes to the success of the project. It is indeed a pleasure to work with them.
Joyce and her husband came on Aliya from Rhodesia in 1976 and settled in Rehovot. She was lucky enough to find employment almost immediately as an “English editor” at the Weizmann Institute and subsequently worked in that capacity at the Settlement Study Center in this field for 15 years at the University of Jerusalem’s Faculty of Agriculture in Rehovot. Her retirement left her free for voluntary work just at the time when plans for the establishing of ESRA’S branch in Rehovot were first being considered. She was among the founding members of it’s board, having served thereon ever since. She has been involved in many aspects of ESRA’S voluntary efforts, but particularly in its support, both financially and practically, of “MESHI” (a government assisted organization that provides employment for the mentally ill), with whom she is in constant touch and visits on a weekly basis.
Born in Stockholm, Sweden Kleile grew up in Edinburgh, Scotland and attended Nursing School in Manchester, England. Following a year’s Hachshara at David Eden farm, England with Habonim and a period of midwifery in Edinburgh, Kleile came to Israel in 1957. She married Moshe Lerner, and then spent three years in the USA, accompanying her husband as Associate Professor of Radiology at Harvard. She moved to Ramat Chen in 1964 and worked as a midwife in the delivery room at Tel-Hashomer Hospital for 35 years. She joined ESRA 5 years ago and is the treasurer of Kiron/Savyon Branch.
Having arrived in Israel in April 1951 Doreen went to one of the first Ulpanim in Israel in Nahariya and soon found work as a social worker in Petach Tikva. In 1954 she married and had 3 daughters. Her return to work in 1968 included a position at the Jewish Agency Welfare Department. Later she changed direction to teaching English. Doreen has been an active ESRA volunteer in Tel Aviv, tutoring English and organizing activities. Now as a resident of Beit Protea, Doreen continues her English tutoring in Herzliya.
Edna has lived in Israel for more than 60 years. Edna uses her creative talents and experience in sewing to teach the sewing class in Kfar Saba for Ethiopian men and women. Edna travels every week from Ramat Gan and is a source of inspiration for the members of the group.
Lynn made Aliyah from the U.S. in 1972 with her family which included two small children. She lived in Jerusalem and had her own business. Moving to Tel Aviv six years ago she immediately became involved with ESRA's English Oral Bagrut program. Subsequently she has become active on the Program and Ethiopian Embroidery Committees. Much of her time has been organizing and leading some of ESRA’s trips and tours.
Ze’ev was born in Rehovot and moved to Tel Aviv at age 18. He served in the army and studied at ORT. Ze’ev worked for his father for 20 years and then with Bank Discount for over 20 years. He first started volunteering for ESRA by assisting his wife Rennie. Now he volunteers by visiting the housebound in Tel Aviv. The Jaffa Techushon also benefits from Ze’ev’s help especially at the special celebrations held during the year.
Sybil was born and raised in South Africa. Sybil came on Aliyah in 1977 with her husband after the last of her 3 children married and left for Canada. Upon arriving in Israel Sybil went to Ulpan and soon became active in various volunteering activities. Her late husband had been an active member of ESRA and enlisted Sybil for ESRA's activities. Sybil has been distributing the ESRA magazine for many years.
Chavah came to Israel in December 1955 from London and attended Ulpan Etzion in Jerusalem. At the end of the course she started work as a Physiotherapist at the Beilinson Hospital, Petach Tikvah and worked there as Chief Physiotherapist for 25 years until she was appointed Superintendent Physiotherapist of Kupat Cholim. She retired in1990 and is kept busy by her 3 children, 8 grandchildren. She has been an active member of the Ramat Hasharon Committee and has coordinated the discussion group.
Sally and her husband came on Aliyah five years ago from Cape Town, South Africa, in order to join their children who had arrived ten years previously. With a background of communal and voluntary work in Cape Town, Sally became active in the ESRA Kfar Saba branch of which she has been secretary for the past two years. In addition Sally regularly distributes the ESRA magazine.
Cynthia came on Aliyah in 1961 with her late husband David. Following ulpan on Kibbutz Degania Aleph, she moved to Ramat Hasharon for 9 years and then to Ra'anana in 1972. She has 3 sons and 6 grandchildren all living in Israel! Her interests include Yoga and Chi Kung and a holistic and new age way of life. She has worked for various companies since living in Israel including Dun and Bradstreet and for many years with Eric Cohen Books until she became a pensioner. Cynthia is a volunteer in the Raanana Bookshop, Raanana office, the Techushon and magazine distribution.
Margaret made Aliyah in 1988. As the mother of two children, who have learning challenges she became involved with ESRA's Support Group for Parents with Children with Mild Learning Disabilities. She has been attending meetings for five years, and two years ago she started to volunteer with the support group's organizing committee. She organizes monthly lectures and also writes and distributes a monthly newsletter. Margaret has a MSW from Yeshiva University in New York and works part-time in fundraising at the Women's Counseling Center.
Ruth came on Aliyah in 1974 with her family first settling in Herzliya and subsequently moving to Ra'anana. She worked at Arkia Airlines for five years and at Scitex for twenty years. Ruth retired six years ago and since then has been happily volunteering for ESRA wherever needed. These days she enjoys helping customers find books at our wonderful Raanana Bookshop.
Nurit made Aliyah from Los Angeles in 1992. Presently she lives in Rosh HaAyin with her husband and their two small children. She works in the field of Cosmetology. Nine years ago, she learned about the ESRA support groups for ADHD and became involved. She has been a part of the planning and management of these groups, particularly in the adult and parents groups. She is now in the process of co- founding another sub-group for the support of adults with the disorder that will give people a chance to meet and ‘talk it through’ with peers. Nurit is very active in the movement towards education and public awareness regarding ADHD and the effects it has on all it touches.
Jelena Vasovic Vujadinovic
Jelena came to Israel in 1999 from Yugoslavia, fleeing her war torn country as a single mother with two small children. She left behind everything she possessed and achieved up to that time, including a successful career as an Independent Editor. She had been presenter on the Yugoslavian Television where she had worked for almost twenty years, producing her own monthly Magazine on educational issues and documentaries. Esravision has greatly benefited from her fine professionalism, which she has brought to the group. She is also always ready and willing to help in many other aspects of ESRA
Sara came from the United States in 1994 with her husband, Ido, and their young son Ben. They now have two more sons Daniel and Michael. Being an avid reader she began volunteering two years ago in the ESRA Bookshop in Raanana in addition to volunteering 3 days a week at the ESRA Nearly New Shop in Raanana.
Nina came on Aliyah with her husband from South Africa in 1972. For 15 years she worked in Tel Aviv representing an American Aircraft Company. After the birth of her first child, Nina decided to work at home and teach English. Nina has been coordinating the ESRA Netanya Sewing Centers for the past 10 years and helped has to establish the new Shachal Learning Center in Netanya.
Volunteer Awards 2008
Tuesday October 28, 2008 at Kibbutz Shefayim Auditorium
ESRA at thirty is a remarkable organization.
It began as a group of English-speaking new immigrants who sought the ease and familiarity of socializing with other English speakers. It has grown into a registered charitable organization which presents to the public a rich array of social, cultural and educational activities and services as well as over thirty projects in the community for those new olim and veteran Israelis in need of support.
The secret of ESRA’s growth and development lies in the quality of its volunteers. ESRA volunteers are hands-on, hard working, innovative and intelligent. They speak with a broad array of accents, mainly in English, sometimes in Hebrew, and often in a mixture of the two. They have ideas and the willingness to act on these ideas, and there is an underlying respect for the individual and a system of support that enables the volunteer to develop his and her interests and pursue individual passions.
Tonight’s Honorees exemplify the diversity of backgrounds, talents and interests of ESRA volunteers. These men and women come from seven different countries and have a wide range of professions and work experiences. They contribute to different areas of ESRA. In several respects, however, they are very similar. They have all demonstrated dedicated and long-term leadership in ESRA and have made significant contributions for positive change in the organization and in the community.
ESRA’s unique strength lies in its willingness to embrace this rich cornucopia of dedicated and exemplary volunteers.
, Chairperson of ESRA
Phyllis’s first Aliya was in 1976 from the United States to Jerusalem. She was employed by Israel Television Children’s Department until 1982 when her husband was sent to the Israel Embassy in Washington. They returned in 1989 and settled in the Sharon area.
Phyllis has been the Coordinator and developer of ESRA’s Ethiopian Embroidery Project since its inception in 1993. Phyllis served as Vice-chairman of ESRA and on many varied ESRA committees. She has participated in many Community Projects in Kfar Saba and is a member of the Volunteer Umbrella Organization and a board member of Melo Ha Tene, Food for the Hungry Project in the community. Phyllis was awarded the Geller Prize for volunteering in Kfar Saba, and the Jewish Agency Yakir Klita award, presented at the President’s house in Jerusalem.
Frankie and Mike Cronin
Frankie and Mike made Aliya from England in 1977 to Herzliya, moving to Ra’anana in 1995. Mike is a Civil Engineer and has worked on such projects as the Hadera Power Station and the new Ben Gurion Airport. He was the Tel Aviv University engineer for 8 years, and most recently has been working with the team planning the new Tel Aviv Mass Transit System. Frankie is a pharmacist, having been a familiar face at the Golan Centre Pharmacy for many years. They have three children and four grandchildren.
Frankie and Mike were among the 250 English speakers who came to the first of Merle’s meetings to organize ESRA. This began a lifelong involvement with ESRA. In 1981 Mike organized a Bicycle Safety campaign and a Road Safety Survey in Herzliya; he helped organize the ESRA Conferences for 60 Plus and Volunteering, the early Supper Quizzes, and served as Chairman of ESRA in 1986-7. Frankie and Mike started the Hiking Club 13 years ago and recently organized three Sponsored Hikes to raise money for ESRA’s Community Projects.
Frankie helped establish the volunteer distribution system for the Magazine and has made sure that ESRA’s database has kept pace with the computer age. She has managed the ‘esra.org’ website for the last 8 years and edits the Monthly Bulletin. Mike and Frankie have been distributors of the ESRA Magazine since its first edition.
Teddy was born in Rouxville, Orange Free State and received his medical education and specialization in Obstetrics and Gynecology in South Africa, as well as rich experience in volunteering. In 1974, Teddy, together with his wife Marsha and three children, made Aliya, eventually settling in Ra’anana. Teddy became Head of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at Poria Hospital and later became the “Chief” of Gynecological Oncology at the Beilinson Hospital in Petach Tikvah. Teddy was introduced to ESRA, was “extremely impressed with the activities and workings of ESRA” and became an active member.
He was involved in fund raising and organized many film premieres, barbecues, casinos, musical interludes and fetes. He chaired the Fund Raising Committee of ESRA and has remained a member of the present Fund Raising Committee.
Renee and Michael Goldway
Michael was born in Lodz, Poland and studied Electronic Engineering in France, graduating in 1939. He joined the French Army, was captured and made a prisoner, escaped and in 1942 reached England. He joined the Army, and settled in England after the war. Michael made Aliya in 1951 where he taught in the Air Force and was sent on missions to Africa, Asia, and Latin America. He then began working for the United Nations in UNESCO and ILO and worked for 17 years in Latin America. Michael retired from the UN in 1979 and returned to Israel and to active volunteering in ESRA.
Renee was born in Cairo, Egypt and made Aliya in 1949. She left Israel to join Michael in Latin America and returned with him to Israel in 1979. Renee was Chairperson of the Ramat Hasharon Branch of ESRA, served as Chairperson of ESRA from 1992-3 and encouraged new immigrant musicians from the Former USSR by organizing fund-raising concerts for them. Together, Michael and Renee established the first ESRA College, in Ra’anana, and the ESRA Travel Club with tours all over the world.
Audrey Goodman made Aliya in 1969 from Columbus, Ohio with her late husband Richard and their three sons. While her sons were in school, Audrey worked for the Rothschild Foundation, the Department of Family Medicine at Tel Aviv University, and was part of the team to establish the Open University.
Audrey’s volunteer work in ESRA includes serving as the Coordinator of the Beit Malinov Lecture Series in Ramat Hasharon, serving as Co-chair of ESRA and then as Chairperson. Audrey continues as the Coordinator of Cultural Activities and Chair of the Program Committee, as well as Chair of the Branches. Three years ago Audrey began the ESRA Cinema Club, and last year she helped establish the ESRA-Moadon Ha Zahav English Speaking College of Ra’anana. Audrey is the proud grandmother of 13 grandchildren.
Adele Hunter grew up in Swansea, a small Jewish community in South Wales, UK where she became involved in Jewish and Zionistic organizations. Before making Aliya she was active in the 35’s women’s campaign for Soviet Jewry. In 1980 Adele, husband Michael and their three children made Aliya and settled in Ra’anana. After working in Tel Hashomer Hospital and Beit Hatefutsoth, Adele then volunteered in ESRA and has been actively involved in all aspects of the organization. She served for two years as co-chairperson of ESRA and for 4 years as co-vice chairperson. From the beginning, her main involvement has been as coordinator of the Welfare Fund. Adele is also an active member of the Fundraising, Charity Shops, Finance and Ra’anana Committees. She has served as a member of the Executive Committee for 13 years. Adele has been actively involved in organizing to-day’s Festival. She and Michael have 8 grandchildren.
Freda and Ralph Lanesman
Freda and Ralph Lanesman made Aliya from South Africa in 1980 and settled in Ra’anana. They both joined ESRA soon after their arrival. Freda worked with the Russian immigrants when they arrived in 1992, helping them with the details of immigration and working in the shop on Bar Ilan Street which she co-managed. Freda was the first chairperson of the Ra’anana branch committee and served as its chairperson or co-chairperson for 12 years. She is a member of the Ra’anana Group and of various committees in ESRA. Freda has worked in the Ra’anana office for many years and “still continues to be of assistance whenever required.”
Ralph qualified as a chartered accountant in South Africa, taking time out to serve with Machal during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948-49. From the inception of the ESRA Community Fund, Ralph served in the financial, administration and management capacity and attended to its accounting matters. Subsequently he was elected to the Control Committee where he still serves.
Robert was born in Johannesburg, studied there and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in South Africa. Robert, together with his wife Rosslyn and two young children, made Aliya to Israel in 1962. After attending Ulpan in Dora, Netanya, the family settled in Ramat Hasharon where their third child was born. Robert served in the IDF during the Six Day War and the Yom Kippur War, and in the reserves until reaching the age limit. In the private sector he served on the Executive of Danish Interiors and Chief Financial Officer of Comasco Ltd. where he maintains a seat on the board of Directors even after retirement. Since his retirement in 1997, Robert has been an active volunteer with ESRA, serving as Treasurer and as Chairperson of the Finance Committee, a position he continues to hold.
Noah Margalit, originally named Violet, was born in England to German refugee parents who were on their way to the United States. After finishing University, travelling in Europe, and teaching in Switzerland, she went to Israel “just to see”. In 1964 she returned to settle in Israel where she taught at Kibbutz Yad Mordechai, studied for another degree at Tel Aviv University, and met and married a “vatik” sixth generation Israeli. They began raising their two children and Violet became “Noah”. She taught at the Alliance school until she retired, and then, by chance and good fortune, she met Adele Rubin and was introduced to ESRA. Noah has served as Co-chairperson of the Steering Committee, has been a member of the Executive Committee, founded the Tel Aviv Branch of ESRA and became its first Chairperson. Today Noah volunteers and tutors Ethiopian students at Bar Ilan University, coordinates ESRA’s Tel Aviv Bible Study Group and the Tel Aviv Short Story Discussion Group, and packs and delivers the ESRA Magazine.
Rika was born in Ficksburg in the Orange Free State, South Africa. A teacher by profession, she came on Aliya in 1969. In Israel, Rika gave up teaching and went into the fashion business, promoting the sale of Israeli products to major stores in Europe and the USA.
Rika began volunteering in ESRA when the large Russian Aliya started and she helped to collect and pack needed items for the new immigrants. In 1998 she took over the distribution of the ESRA Magazine, a job that she continues to be responsible for until today. She was Chairperson of the Herzliya Branch and volunteered at the Techushon until she moved to Netanya. In 2003 Rika, together with three other Netanya women, organized the Hand in Hand Food Pantry which collects, packs, and delivers food parcels once a month to needy families in Netanya. She and her husband also collect and deliver goods from Netanya to the ESRA Charity Shop in Ra’anana. The Netanya Music Evenings were started by Rika and these evenings are hosted in the Meyerowitz home with Barbara Blum presenting the programs. Rika is married to Willy and they have three married children and six grandchildren.
Adele came to Israel from Capetown, South Africa in 1951 and married here in 1954. She and Mike have two children, a son plus three in New York and a daughter plus two in Israel. Mike is from the United States and came to Israel with Machal. Adele’s work with bereaved families during the Yom Kippur War led her to leave teaching and become the Volunteer Coordinator of the Herzliya Municipality from 1978-1985. Adele became the Coordinator of Volunteers on the Steering Committee of ESRA from 1985 and one of the first Coordinators of the Branches. Adele served as Chairwoman of ESRA from 1994-96. In order to deal with ESRA’s continuing growth and expansion, she has recently organized the new Volunteer Division which deals with all aspects of ESRA volunteering. Adele currently serves as the Coordinator of ESRA’s Volunteer Division.
Joseph (Josie) Shlain
Josie was an active member of the Zionist Socialist Party in his native South Africa, and he was the founder of the Dror Youth Movement. In 1948, at the outbreak of the War of Independence, he came to Israel as a Machal volunteer. In the initial years he was active in the creation of the Hachshara Center, Beth Chever and the Moshav Shitufi Kfar Daniel. He is a qualified auditor/accountant by profession as well as a registered Real Estate Broker and Insurance Agent. Josie cites as his major achievement, his marriage to a wonderful immigrant from England, and his two children and nine grandchildren, all of whom are in Israel. The Jewish Agency called on him in 1961 to head the Department of English Speaking Immigrants. He later set up his private business, which dealt in the main with promotion of Business and Investments in Israel. For more than 30 years he was involved in volunteer activities of TELFED.
In January 1984 he moved to Herzliya and from that moment ESRA became an integral part of his life. Irrespective of the posts he held he was always involved in the organizational aspects of ESRA. He has served as Chairperson of ESRA, Treasurer, Business Administrator of the ESRA Magazine, and several times as Chairman of the Finance and the Administration Committees.
Richard was born and educated in Dublin and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1969. He came on Aliya in 1977. Richard is married to Rena, they have three children, and he is now the proud grandfather of one grandchild.
Richard has been involved with ESRA for the past 10 years, serving as Chairman from 2001 to 2005. At present he is the Chairman of the Fundraising Committee and is very committed to the Social Services side of ESRA.
Volunteer Awards 2004
Meira came on aliya from the US in 1967 with Jack and their four children. She founded ESRA’s second hand clothing shop in Zahala and served as Branch Chairman for three years, coordinating branch activities. Meira has volunteered teaching and organized many volunteer workshops and training sessions. She was instrumental in organizing a program in Yavne for gifted Ethiopian children to study at the Weizmann Institute. This year Meira headed the ESRA Soup and Salad Cookbook project.
Freda Berman (ז"ל)
Freda was born in London and worked as a social worker in a Manchester hospital before arriving in Israel in 1959. After retiring from her job as an office manager at the American Embassy, she devoted her time to volunteering. Freda found her niche in ESRA organizing the Rehovot Garden Club.
Judy arrived from Cape Town in 1989, joining her two sons who had made aliya earlier. Her third son joined the family in Israel soon after. Judy began her volunteering in ESRA as a magazine distributor and helping in ESRA’s offices. Judy has been instrumental in reorganizing the English Tutoring Program in Kfar Saba.
Ishai is a member of Kibbutz Givat Brenner. He has devoted many years to teaching at the Open University and Seminar HaKibbutzim. He is a source of inspiration to the ESRAVision team. His expertise is photography, television production and video. He is married and the father of four children.
Creo, a pre-press publishing company, opened its doors to welcome seventeen teenage immigrants from Ethiopian families for a dynamic program involving some thirty volunteers from amongst their staff. With full support from the management, the volunteers introduced the youngsters to the world of hi-tech and shared their experience and enthusiasm to encourage them to reach for new horizons. Creo has shown, by example, that it is a company with a heart toward the community and is pro-active in challenging today's youth.
Shifra made aliya from the USA with her husband and children ten years ago. In response to the urgent needs of the hungry, she began the Hand in Hand Food Pantry in Netanya, along with Hadassah Birnbaum, Marian Burk and Rika Meyerowitz. It is based on a similar organization in her native Chicago. They prepare food parcels for 120 families with 800 people. She is the proud grandmother of 14 grandchildren.
Born in India, Kitty, as many Jews of her generation, left for Hong Kong where she met her late husband. They had three daughters and a son. She has always been involved with children, whether running her own preschool or teaching in the Jewish community. She dedicates herself to the ESRA Szold afternoon program and English tutoring. Kitty also volunteers in the children’s Oncology Ward at Tel Hashomer hospital.
Fonda originally from South Africa, taught ballet there for many years. She was nominated for the American and Canadian Women Association for her work with the colored ballet in the Eastern Cape. In 1988 she made aliya with her family and in 1989 opened “Fonda’s Catering” in Ranaana, catering for the South African Embassy as well as many other events. Following her husband’s death, Fonda founded the ESRA Widow- Widowers Support Group in which she is still deeply involved. She has moved to Eilat where she volunteers as an English teacher to Ethiopian children and helps at a soup kitchen. Fonda collected recipes from Eilat chefs for the ESRA Soup and Salad Cookbook.
Hadas was born in Switzerland and spent her childhood in Barcelona. Hadas made aliya 27 years ago after having volunteered at a kibbutz. She worked for 16 years at the Gottex Company. In 1986 she received an award as the "outstanding employee in Israel Industry" at a ceremony held in the Knesset. Hadas volunteers with the Esra Embroidery Project, collecting food for the hungry and teaching English to children with social problems.
In 1961 Neville left South Africa to serve in Machal – the IDF unit for volunteers from abroad. He has been in Israel ever since. He worked at TWA for 36 years. Upon his retirement He began volunteering with ESRA. Today Neville works with the magazine and its distribution and advertisements. He is also a vital member of the Esra Welfare Fund project. He is the proud father of two daughters and 4 grandchildren.
Gitty, originally from Montreal, Canada, made aliya in 1964 with her husband and late daughter. Since then she has devoted her career to education. She has worked in various English teaching programs in Israeli high schools. Gitty joined ESRA in 1995 and today volunteers as an English tutor coordinator and chairperson of the Ramat Hasharon branch.
Joe, his wife Chana, and their three children, made aliya from Australia in 1972. Upon retiring as a dentist, Joe served as secretary of the Lawn Bowls and represented Israel at World Bowls competitions. He participated in three Maccabiot and won three gold medals. Joe has been a member of ESRA for the past twenty years. He has been an outstanding volunteer at the Gan Rashal office for the past two years.
Cecily, born in Capetown, South Africa, made aliya in 1970. She received a music degree from the University of Cape Town and continued studying here in Israel, specializing in music therapy and psychotherapy. She worked for many years in special education with children and youth with severe developmental and physical handicaps. Through her hobby in gardening she has become an outstanding leader of ESRA’s Garden Club.
Yitzchak was born in 1922 in Czechoslovakia. During the Second World War he was interred in Nazi Work Camps until his escape to Budapest. In 1949 he made aliya with his family and settled in Bnei Zion. He ran the makolet there for 28 years, opening afterwards a clothing shop near ESRA’s Nearly-New Shop in Raanana. He often donated clothes to the shop. Today the shop benefits from his expertise as a full time volunteer.
Shlomo, born in Israel in 1950, completed his army service and ran a successful carpentry business for 22 years. In 1992 Shlomo became blind due to a hereditary disease. He then studied alternative medicine at Reidman College continuing his education at Wingate College taking special courses to assist the blind. Shlomo now devotes his time volunteering at ESRA’s Kadima project for disabled young adults, Yad Sarah, and the Laniado Nursing Home.
Judy and her late husband, Aubrey, leaders in the Bnei Zion movement in South Africa, made Aliya in 1958 and became members of Moshav Shitufi Timorim. Judy went to South Africa on Shlichut between 1972 – 1975. She has been involved with ESRA since her retirement, volunteering as a tutor at Ostrovsky High School and knitting for the Raanana knitting group. In addition, she uses her administrative skills as a faithful volunteer at the Gan Rashal office.
Shirley made aliya from Johannesburg in 1964. She began her study of ballet at the age of four and it is has been her lifelong love. She is an active member of the Tel Aviv branch. She has organized the ESRA Tel Aviv knitting group which has produced many knitted items for people in need in her city and elsewhere. She is the proud mother of four children and six grandchildren.
Leonie was born in South Africa and studied music at the University of Capetown. She made aliya in 1974 and prior to moving to Kfar Vradim lived in Ramat Hasharon and Jerusalem. She taught music and also worked as an interior designer. She and her next door neighbor, Shirley Stein, founded the ESRA Kfar Vradim group. They created a unique project of playing scrabble with mentally challenged people.
Madelyn ( Maddy) Levine
Madelyn and her family made aliya seven and a half years ago and settled in Raanana. She worked for Pfizer Pharmaceuticals until two and a half years ago. At ESRA she uses her expertise in public relations for ESRA and created ESRA's mentoring project.
Bella has been involved in volunteer work all of her life. In South Africa she helped found Toastmistress International and served as a Council President. In 1995 she made Aliya from Cape Town. Her specialty at ESRA is gift-wrapping presents for all our special events. She has three children, eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Elliot Lindell (ז"ל)
Elliot was a devoted treasurer and active member of the ESRA Rehovot branch. In spite of his serious illness, he served as an inspiration to all. He will be sorely missed.
David and Adele Margolis
David began his volunteer work more than five years ago when he answered an ad requesting volunteers to aid the blind in Netanya. Today the couple volunteer six days a week on a variety of projects, including collecting items for ESRA’s nearly new shops and the magazine distribution for the Netanya area.
Born and raised in Israel, Varda studied arts and crafts and spent her career teaching carpentry. Upon retirement nine years ago, she became involved as a worker with the immigrant services teaching Ethiopians sewing. The project expanded and ESRA took over under the leadership of Nina Zuck. Varda has become personally involved with the progress of her students and has helped tremendously with the Ethiopian embroidery project.
Lily Rose Michalowsky
Lily Rose became involved in ESRA soon after making aliya in 1994 from South Africa. She has volunteered in the Raanana office since that time. She also tutors English in Raanana and sewing to Ethiopian immigrants in Kfar Saba. Her motto for retirees is: ‘go out there and see for yourself how much you can do for others and reap the benefits and satisfaction you get from volunteering’.
Avraham made aliya with his wife Ruth in 1998 from New York where he managed luggage factories for prestigious companies. In Israel he has offered his expertise to the Netanya Ethiopian sewing center. His talent in maintaining and repairing ESRA’s sewing machines has allowed this project to grow from strength to strength.
Maxine is originally from New York and made aliya with her late husband 46 years ago. Together they raised two sons on Kibbutz Hazorea where she still resides. She is a semi-retired clinical social worker who specializes in individual and group therapy. She facilitated the ESRA Widows and Widowers therapy and support group.
The Raanana Knitting Group
Renee Lees and a committee comprised of Esta Azouz, Ethel Goldberg, Edie Sherman and Hettie Hyams founded the Raanana Knitting Group. The group began knitting for children who arrived with the first Ethiopian Aliya. Today, under Wendy Goldstein's leadership, the group consists of over 40 members aged from the mid-fifties to Esta Azouz, who is now 102. The group knits more than 1,000 articles yearly. The elderly, wheelchair bound, premature babies, and other people in need benefit from the Raanana Knitting Group’s products.
Cookie, born in Milwaukee, taught school in the US until her aliya in 1964. She was a regular volunteer for many years in the ESRA office, is a magazine distributor, English tutor at Rishonim High School and a Techushon helper in Herzliya. Cookie organizes music evenings and short story group in Herzliya. In addition she has volunteered for over 16 years at the Herzliya public library.
Renee, originally from London, made aliya in 1967. Since 1969 she has been involved in volunteer work. She visits homebound people and is a volunteer English tutor at the Open University. Renee also opens her home to needy youngsters who need help in English. She is an active member of the Tel Aviv branch.
Rani Kfir has supplied thousands of hot, nutritious and comforting meals to the children in ESRA's Learning Centers. Each portion represents his caring and concern for the children's welfare as he has demonstrated on many occasions. Rani is an example of how commerce and welfare may come together for the benefit of all concerned.
Noga is Israeli born and educated. After serving in the army, she became a teacher, married and spent time in California. Upon her return to Israel with her family of four children, she continued her education at Tel Aviv University. She worked with schizophrenic patients in Abarbanel hospital for 10 years. She heads ESRA's very unique social group project in Kfar Shmaryahu, joining disabled children with students from the Rishonim high school in Herzliya.
Before making aliya in 1972, Eve worked at the Kibbutz Aliya desk in New York. In Israel, Eve and her family settled on Kibbutz Kfar Haruv. She works with special needs students as an English teacher. She joined the Support Group for Parents of Children with LD looking for advice in dealing with her own child. Eve has been active in securing guest speakers for monthly lectures. She edits the support group newsletter.
Eddie was born in Cardiff, Wales. He was an avid student of Bridge and achieved many successes, eventually reaching the British National Finals. Together with his wife Gloria, they made aliya in 1982 and settled in Netanya. He began teaching bridge at Beit Fisher in Raanana, where he founded the ESRA Bridge Club that celebrates its tenth anniversary.
In 1980 Cynthia and her husband, Stanley and their four children, made aliya from Belfast, Northern Ireland. In 1999 she began volunteering at the Gan Rashal office. Cynthia proofreads the magazine and, together with Dorothea Walters, has contributed greatly to the success of the ESRA second hand bookshop at Beit Fisher.
Aida made aliya to Israel from Uruguay in 1977. Having acquired vast experience as an active volunteer in communal activities and leadership, she embarked on her career with the Ministry of Absorption’s Community Involvement Department. She rose through the ranks to become the director of the department’s central region division. She has been an avid supporter of ESRA's activities for new olim.
Marlene made aliya with her family 17 years ago from Cape Town. Today she lives in Kfar Saba with her husband and teenage children. She is a longtime volunteer with the ESRA Support Group for LD children. She is now an active committee member.
Shirley,and husband Itz, made aliya in 1956 from South Africa. They lived in Jerusalem and Shirley worked for the Israel Bond office. They were sent to South Africa on Shlichut. Upon their return to Israel, they settled in Herzliya and Shirley worked at the American International School. On moving to Kfar Vradim in 1999 Shirley joined forces with Leonie Klugman to establish ESRA's northern branch in Kfar Vradim. Today they are involved in several ESRA volunteer projects.
Born in England, Gill came to Israel in 1972 and worked for TWA. She was transferred to their world company, Worldspan. Today Gill supervises ESRA's English oral coaching in the Tel Aviv area. This successful project is in 12 schools and Gill's goal is to increase the number to 15.
Norma made aliya from England 20 years ago. Together with her husband she opened a chocolate factory in the industrial area of Raanana. Upon retirement she has become a most active volunteer at the ESRA Nearly-New Shop in Kfar-Saba.
Dorothea made aliya twice, the first time in 1964, and again, in 1983. She worked at the Tel Aviv Hilton until her retirement in 1999. Last year when the ESRA second hand bookshop was opened, Dorothea became an active volunteer at the shop. She continually strives to promote the shop amongst the English speaking community. She works at the shop 3-4 days a week and was inspirational in creating an ESRA bookmark containing all the relevant information about the shop. Dorothea proofreads for the ESRA magazine.
Erika was born in Castle, Germany and was sent to England by her parents in 1939. During WWII she worked as a radar operator until she was able to join her parents in Chile. In February 1971 she made aliya together with her late husband. Erika joined ESRA and began volunteering as an English tutor. She is also very involved in Neve Hanna, an organization that assists children from broken families. She found in ESRA, “all the indispensable ingredients such as morality, help to your fellow beings, tolerance, patience, to which we human beings should be entitled.”
Volunteer Awards 2003
ZIONA AGULNIK Ziona made aliya from South Africa for the second time in April 1996. Her first project with ESRA was helping open the Techushon in Kfar Saba
where she volunteered for three and a half years. She delivers food for the needy in Kfar Saba and works with the Ethiopian community. She has also helped start a sewing chug for the Ethiopian ladies in Kfar Saba and worked with ESRA volunteers to help Beautiful Israel projects by painting walls and beautifying
parks in Kfar Saba. She is married has three children, 2 grandchildren and one on the way. She paints and has exhibited in Israel, South Africa and Sweden.
SHARONA AXELROD Sharona made aliya in October 1959 from Dublin, Eire. She sits on the ESRA Ramat Hasharon committee and volunteers at the Techushon in Ramat
Hasharon which was previously in Herzliya. Sharona helps tutor English for Bagrut at the Lady Davis School. She likes swimming, music, playing the piano,
dressmaking, gardening, helping people and is interested in art and history and loves to travel.
DAWN BELAGA Dawn made aliya from Manchester in 1985 after being a volunteer at Kibbutz Shamir. As the mother of four learning disabled children she has been
assisting the Learning Disabilities Group for the past four years. She is a lover of horses and all animals and offers her home for a shelter nursing strays
back to health, then giving them to S.O.S.
HADASSA BIRNBAUM Born in the United States, Hadassa made aliya in 1970 with her husband and 3 sons. They settled in Midreshet Sde Boker where she assisted her
husband in the organization of a high school for English speaking olim. Hadassa began a new career in Social Work and worked in the Kadima Department of Social Services for 21 years. Presently she serves as coordinator of the ESRA Moadon for Young Disabled Men and Women. Hadassa is also a social worker for the
Disabled, abused women and in the Shikumon of Yad Sarah. She is the proud grandmother of 10 grandchildren.
BARBARA BLUM Barbara was born in London, qualified in Dentistry from the
University College Hospital, London. She made aliya in 1985 with her husband,
Sydney Blum from Johannesburg who passed away a year later. Their four sons and
8 grandchildren all live in Israel. Barbara practiced dentistry in London, Hong
Kong and Jerusalem and worked as a volunteer for twelve years at the Israel
Museum, Jerusalem and as a dentist to the Frankfurter Center for the Aged. She
moved to Herzliya in 2000. Her hobbies include collecting thimbles, bowls and
the history of music. She presents unique music programs as a volunteer to ESRA
groups in private homes.
HILLEL DAVIDI Hillel was born in Iran and made aliya in 1965 at the age of 7.
He studied at Kfar Batya. He was a seaman for seven years and lived in the U.S.
for twelve years during which time he married. He returned to Israel with his
wife and two daughters in 1995. Hillel received help from ESRA getting started
with work and has always been happy to help ESRA with any office repairs that
need to be done.
TONY FRANKLIN Tony made aliya in 1974 from England. He volunteers at ESRA
assisting with financial management of ECF Projects and helps English teachers
in preparation of students for Bagrut at Aviv High School in Raanana. He also
volunteers in the Civil Guard in Raanana. He enjoys sports in general, long
distance running in particular and is the co-founder of the Annual Raanana 10k
run and is on the organizing committee with the Raanana Municipality since
1990. He likes music and photography.
EILEEN GOLDSMITH Eileen made aliya from England, after her husband passed away.
An active volunteer for Israeli projects for 40 years, she was President of WIZO
in Brighton and Ort in San Diego. Eileen together with Henry Blanks started
the Sharon Social group in Herzliya. After loosing her second husband Eileen
became involved with the ESRA’s Widow’s Group and has been hosting the group in
her home for the past two years. She has two grandchildren and expects to be a
great-grandmother twice over in the near future.
DEBBY & PHIL HERMANN Debbie & Phil, who was born in Austria, made aliya from
the United States. Phil does the correspondence and edits the bulletin for the
Kiron/Savyon Group. Debbie & Phil bring and serve refreshments at all the
meetings. Both have volunteered in the past with the administration of the
Magazine. They both volunteer in the Civil Guard Debbie likes reading and
gardening and Phil likes painting and writing. They have two children and 5
grandchildren all in Israel.
BARUCH KASSIFF Baruch came on aliya in November 1980 from the United States. He
belongs to the Support Group for Parents of Children with Learning Disabilities
and helps to prepare for meetings. As a professional cameraman he voluntarily
videotapes meetings for people too far away to attend. He enjoys music and
cooking. The Kassiff’s feel they have received so much help for a severely
learning disabled son that they try to repay the kindness and care.
MERVYN MEDICKS Mervyn made aliya in February 1961 from Nairobi, Kenya. He has
taught English to Russians and is presently teaching at schools. He volunteered
2 hours a week for four years with a young mother with arteriosclerosis . He
exhibited his paintings at the Mofet Gallery in December 1997, the proceeds of
which went to needy Ethiopians. Mervyn is currently writing short stories, and
volunteering in schools 2 hours a week. He oil paints and has had 10 exhibitions
in the past years.
MAUREEN NISSEL Maureen made on aliya from England in 1968. She is married with
2 children and 1 granddaughter all of whom live in Israel. She helps with the
Ethiopian women’s project in ESRA Kfar Saba’s sewing center and has tutored and
delivered food parcels to the needy. Maureen enjoys reading, studying Italian
music and traveling.
LINDA SCHLOSBERG Linda made aliya in 1984 from England. Widowed at a young age,
she raised two children and now has four grandchildren. Always ready to help,
she volunteers in the Raanana office and is also active in Emunah. A very busy
lady, her hobbies include creative writing and folk singing.
NISSIM RACHIMI Nissim was born in Iran in 1946. A Raanana resident he is
married with four children. He does general renovations and repairs. He likes
to help organizations and those in need. His parents also believed in helping
and this value passed from generation to generation. He is willing to help Beit
Fisher with all that is required.
VIVIANE REICH Viviane was born in Switzerland to a French family, grew up in
France and later moved to England. She made aliya in 1977. Married with 4
children and 11 grandchildren (and another on the way) all of whom live in
Israel. Besides her volunteering work for ESRA she works part time. Viviane
helps the Ethiopian women in ESRA Kfar Saba’s sewing centers and does whatever
is needed for the community. Her interests include cooking and music. She has
made a new career designing jewellery.
DAHLIA SHAPIRA Dahlia Shapira, a seventh generation Israeli, is managing
director of Shapira Films Ltd., which she co-founded with her late husband David
Shapira. All along she has been active in helping promote the Israeli cinema and
volunteered on many boards and committees. She is currently a board member on
the Israeli Film Council. Throughout its 35 years Shapira Films has been
dedicated to contributing time and funds to various good will organizations
including: ESRA, The Gila Almagor Wishes Foundation, Eran, Israel Cancer
Association, Akim, Shema, and various hospitals. Dahlia is also interested in
the fine arts and over the years has acquired an interesting collection of
paintings and sculptures. She hopes to continue to contribute for many years to
DENIS SHIFRIN Denis made aliya in 1949 from England. As Illustrator for the ESRA
Magazine he has added a new dimension to the graphics of the Magazine. He also
illustrates and designs for the "Seniors of Habonim" Magazine. He is interested
in Art, Sculpture, writing and reading. Has a wife, 3 children and 7
grandchildren all living in Israel.
ANATOL SHLAK Anatol was born in Buenos Aires in 1945. After volunteering at a
Kibbutz in 1967 he made aliya with his family in 1971. He has volunteered with
ESRA for more than 20 years. He also volunteers at the Herzliya Municipality
and is able to help olim from Argentina and Russia as he speaks both Spanish and
Russian. He is married with three children.
NORMAN SILBERT Norman was born in Durban, South Africa, in 1951. He made aliya
in February 1976 and is married with three children all born in Israel. He
studied translation and interpreting at Bar Ilan University between 1991-1993.
He worked as a freelance translator and for many years as the in-house
translator/editor for a large translation company in Tel Aviv and currentlly
works for the US government. Norman translates for the ESRA magazine. An active
member of the local shul he is a keen student of biblical Jewish history and an
unrepentant Zionist. Norman gets pleasure from organizing and leading tiyulim in
Israel for firends and is an enthusiastic gardener and enjoys playing bridge.
HANNA WENDE Hanna made aliya in 1979 from Australia. She is married with 6
children(?, all married,)and 19 grandchildren, half living in Australia and half
in Israel. Her interests include the piano and attending concerts. On arriving
in Israel she set up a Nursery, which has become very successful, but she
herself has always been interested in drought tolerant plants. On her
retirement from the nursery she established a smaller nursery for drought
tolerant plants and all the sales are donated to ESRA projects.
VALERIE WHITESON Valerie made aliya in1960 from South Africa. All her children
and grandchildren live in Israel. Valerie has volunteered for the past 5 years,
through ESRA, helping the blind in Netanya and has also taught English at all
levels including at Bar Ilan University. She writes textbooks, is still
involved with teaching English, plays bridge and belongs to a book club and
RUTH WIDERKER Ruth made aliya in 1985 from the U.S.A. She volunteers in the Gan
Rashal office, with the Food for the Hungry project and also tutors English to
Ethiopian College students and provides special transportation needs. She is
always willing to extend a hand to help someone. Ruth enjoys yoga and Chi Kung,
bridge and traveling. She has 2 children and 7 grandchildren all of whom live
Volunteer Awards 2002
Born in the United States, Hadassa made aliya in 1970 with her husband and 3 sons. They settled in Midreshet Sde Boker where she assisted her husband in the organization of a high school for English speaking olim. Hadassa began a new career in Social Work and worked in the Kadima Department of Social Services for 21 years. Presently she serves as coordinator of the ESRA Moadon for Young Disabled Men and Women. Hadassa is also a social worker for the Disabled, abused women and in the Shikumon of Yad Sarah. She is the proud grandmother of 10 grandchildren.
Rosalie was born in Montreal, Canada and received her BSEng, MS and PhD in the United States. Rosalie is Editor of the Rehovot Reporter, a quarterly publication of the Rehovot English Speaking Organizations. She was programme chairperson of ESRA Rehovot for two years and is now Secretary and liaison person with Yad Yaakov. She has organized many activities and edits the well received "What's New" for the Rehovot Branch.
Rosie and Piers Coleman
Fonda was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. She trained as a ballet teacher in Cape Town where she married. The family lived in Port Elizabeth for 18 years where Fonda taught ballet to non-whites in a voluntary position. She was nominated Woman of the Year for her roll with non-whites. Returning to Pietersburg Fonda voluntarily organized a non-white cooking school which she ran for 10 years. Fonda was on the committee of the Pietersburg Zionist Organization. The family made aliya in 1988 and Fonda opened a catering business. Fonda has 3 married children and three grandchildren.
Tally was born and raised in England. She first made aliyah at age 9 and spent 3 years here. The family then returned to England and Tally made aliya for a second time in 1992. After one year of national service at Yad Vashem Film and Photo archive in Jerusalem, researching the Eichmann Trial, Tally studied at the Technion where she received a Diploma in Interior Design. Tally joined ESRA in 1997 and has since become a Befriender.
Sharon made Aliya in 1999 from South Africa together with her husband and settled in Ra'anana. She began her "new" career in 2000 when she started doing voluntary work at the ESRA Gan Rachel office and now volunteers at the Hanadiv office. She has served as secretary to the Ra'anana Branch Committee and also keeps herself busy knitting sweaters for the Ra'anana Knitting Circle. She recently started volunteering for the Learning Disability Group.
Leah grew up in Habonim in the United States and made Aliya with her husband and children in 1975. During the 20 years that they lived in Jerusalem, Leah participated in various volunteer and educational activities. After moving to Raanana in 1995, Leah joined the ESRA Raanana office in 1996 and uses her background in Social Work to help. She is also active in the Job Seekers.
Didi was born in Poland and moved to Israel at the age of 3 in 1931. He was educated at the Hebrew University and was a member of the Palmach. He served as Managing Director of the Herzliya studios and produced many movies for the BBC and CBS on location in England, the U.S, Canada, South Africa and Eastern Europe. He organized an outstanding, successful evening at the American Ambassador's residence this year.
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Ruth came to Israel with her family in 1949. Today she has two daughters and six grandchildren. She studied Hotel Management. Ruth joined ESRA several years ago. Today she is secretary of the Ramat Hasharon branch and works with the Welfare Department of Ramat Hasharon in support of an after-school "moadonit". She helps organize the yearly concert at Yad Lebanim in support of needy families at Rosh Hashana and Pesach. Ruth also volunteers at Kfar Ofarim with Autistic grown-ups in a project called "Coffee and Sympathy" and coordinates the volunteering of youth movements in the local community.
Sandra made aliya with her husband and 3 children in 1971 and now has 6 grandchildren. She worked for 24 years at the Sheraton Hotel in Tel Aviv as chief florist and took early retirement last year. Three years ago Sandra volunteered to teach flower arranging to the residents of Shikma, a hostel for mentally challenged adults. Her most successful and best appreciated work was when members of the flower arranging society of Israel together with the residents of Shikma, presented a combined full day working with flowers and achieved unbelievable results. Hopefully, this will become an annual event. Sandra is also a member of the Hiking Club and helps with their office work.
Lenore and Herb Hahn
Born in Poland, Gloria emigrated to the United States in 1947. She met her husband in Betar where she was a very active member. Affiliated with the Conservative Synagogue Gloria held many high positions in the sisterhood. The family made aliya in 1969 and settled in Savyon. Two years ago Gloria joined the new ESRA branch in Kiron/Savyon where she is chairperson. She is the proud mother of a son, two daughters and 5 grandchildren all of whom live in Israel.
Hilda arrived in Israel on aliyah on her 13th trip in 1992. Always inv()\ved in voluntary work in South Africa, she soon became active here. For several years Hilda helped at the Kfar Saba trampiada, she also assists "bagrut" students with their oral English, helped at the Municipal Senior Citizens' Daycare center and was the secretary and co-chair of the ESRA Knitting circle. A behind the scenes worker today she co-ordinates ladies who want to knit at home.
Ian made aliya from South Africa in 1986 with his wife, Lynne. He joined in the first hike and later helped with the organization of the ESRA Hiking Club, as a way of ensuring that the hikes could continue for all in the community to enjoy. Ian is a gynecologist; his hobbies include food, cooking, food, music, food and hiking.
Ann came on aliyah from South Africa in 1977 with her husband, Leon and 3 sons. She was on the executive of the Womens' Zionist League for many years. The family lived in Jerusalem for 19 years where Ann worked at the Hebrew University Library and the Law Faculty. After moving to Kfar Saba, Ann became involved with the ESRA Branch there and has been secretary and treasurer for the past 5 years. Ann also delivers the magazines and assists with the Ethiopian embroidery projects.
Born in England and married to an Israeli, Stella has two children and two grandchildren. She has worked at the Tel Aviv University for 29 years as administrator of an Economic Research Institute. Stella has been a volunteer with ESRA since its inception 23 years ago. Since moving to Modi'in, she has run the ESRA "48+ Social Group" with Joan Lester and has spent many hours organizing excellent programmes for her group.
Zamira was born in Haifa but moved to Tel Aviv with her pioneer parents where she was brought up. She married towards the end of the War of Independence and has two sons and 5 grandchildren. Together with 10 friends Zamira established Kahal which works for soldiers' welfare. Zamira is a member of the "Beautiful Israel" board and joined the ESRA Community Fund when she saw the dedication and willingness given by their volunteers
Rennie, born in London, has been involved in charity work since the age of 16. For the past two and a half years, Rennie has been volunteering on the ESRA Tel Aviv committee, helping out wherever possible; visiting the housebound, teaching conversational English to pensioners, preparing Bagrut students for their oral English examination at school as well as at home, collecting goods and arranging fund-raising events.
Born in 1922, Renee spent most of her life in Coventry, England where she married and had one son. She was always involved in charity work, in particular the J. N. F. In 1982 Renee made aliya with her husband and mother in order to join her son, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren. On arrival, Renee joined the executive of the ESRA Golden Age Club as treasurer, a position she still holds. She is also Secretary of the ESRA Knitting circle. Renee has 2 married grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren.
Yvonne came to Israel for the first time as a volunteer during the Six Day War in 1967 and made aliya in 1969. Yvonne spent her time on Kibbutzim until joining a Nahal Paratrooper unit in 1970 as their cook. She later married David and had two children. Yvonne has been involved in various group activities and has been involved with the ESRA Support Group for Parents of children with mild Learning Disabilities, since its inception. Today there are three different groups and Yvonne, as well as being a working mother, runs the ESRA Support Group for Adults (over 20) with ADHD.
Rochelle made aliyah in 1996 together with her husband. Rochelle joined ESRA and the Support Group for Parents of Children with Learning Disabilities. Rochelle became an active member of the group and joined their Steering Committee where she has served for the past three years. She is involved in the organization and planning of the group's activities.
Last year, Rochelle was instrumental in setting up an ESRA Learning Disabilities website.
Volunteer Awards 2001
For your untiring efforts and enthusiasm on behalf of the Right Track Centres. Your gift of story telling has brought added enjoyment and pleasure to everyone there.
For your caring, dedication and nUliuring of ESRA's most valued asset - our volunteers. Your volunteering, facilitation of the Immigrant Women's Group and regular home visits to the elderly make you an exemplary volunteer
For your dedication, tireless efforts and enthusiasm in chairing the Computer Club
For your dedication and commitment to fulfilling the task of updating the ESRA Data Base at the Hanadiv office and for your willingness to contribute your time.
For your readiness to help and collect needed items for the ESRA Nearly New Shop in Ra'anana
For your sensitivity, understanding and encouragement to those whom you help in our support groups
For your volunteering in the community and dedication and perseverance in developing and promoting interesting programmes for the Ganei Yehuda branch
For your caring, hard work and contribution to the success of the ESRA Nearly New Shop in Ra'anana
For your many years of dedication to the ESRA Knitting Group which you successfully lead with good humour and affection. The many beautiful knitted items have brought both warmth and pleasure to young and old alike
For your untiring efforts and your willingness to help new immigrants living in the Raanana Absorption Centre.
For your dedication and efforts as a volunteer teacher of English for the past eighteen years. By your example you have enabled us to recruit many other volunteers and fill a very important educational need for many children
For your willingness to help in every way and for your dedication to the special children in the Techushon in Jaffa
For your commitment, patience and untiring efforts on behalf of the LD/ADHD Support Group and for your dedication to the management of the group's mobile lending library
For your dedication and steadfastness as a volunteer in Beit Levinstein. Your concern and care for these very needy people is heartwarming and most appreciated.
For your outstanding efforts and professionalism on behalf of ESRA's projects. Your strong, supportive leadership has created an effective professional committee ready to meet the needs of the community
Edward & Valma Pachtman
For your dedication to the ESRA Nearly New Shop in Ra'anana and for your patience and kindness at all times
For organizing, maintaining and sustaining the Ra'anana Golden Age Club through your dedication and enthusiastic leadership
For your vision in the development of ESRA, your inirn:tab!e ability to discover. nurture and mentor volunteers and your untiring efforts to strengthen and secure the future of ESRA
For your dedication, warmth, initiative and continued efforts on behalf of the children in the moadonit in Kfar Saba and for your voluntary activities on behalf of ESRA Kfar Saba
Marie & Lynn Sanders
For your work over the years in addressing and distributing ESRA Magazines, your activities with the Golden Age group in Herzliya and your many contributions to the English speaking community
For your outstanding creative talents not only in your leadership in ESRAvision but in all aspects of ESRA's special events. Your many unique ideas have added a breath of vitality to our activities
For your outstanding leadership in guiding the development of the Rehovot Branch and for your efforts in finding answers to the needs of the English speaking community
Volunteer Awards 2000
For your determination to keep the ESRA spirit alive in the Hadar area and for your creative talents in fmding new activities to answer the needs of the English speaking community.
For your sensitivity to the needs of others, your knowledge and gift of heart which have touched the lives of so many in the ADHD Parents' Support Group.
For your determination to keep the ESRA spirit alive in the Hadar area and for your creative talents in finding new activities to answer the needs of the English speaking community.
In appreciation of your creativity and successful efforts in promoting all aspects of ESRA, from the Ethiopian embroidery project to the Kfar Saba branch where you reach out to the entire community.
For the quiet efficiency with which you do your work, without which ESRA Tel Aviv would have difficulty functioning and for your willingness to volunteer and help whenever necessary.
Zena & Wolf Doffman
For your readiness to help and your willingness to travel almost anywhere to collect needed items for the nearly new shops, first in Neve Sharett and now in Ra'anana.
In recognition of your participation in so many facets ofESRA: magazine distribution, tutoring high school pupils in English, participation in the Golden Age group and the Herzliya branch of ESRA, and more.
For your outstanding contribution to the Gan Rashal office, your hard work and your willingness, dedication and gentle manner which make working with you a pleasure.
For your outstanding work as a volunteer tutor in the Right Track Centre in Kiriat Nordau and your warm, outgoing personality and excellent rapport with your students which have served as an inspiration for other volunteers.
For your 10 years of continued efforts to fmd meaningful employment for the many highly qualified academic olim from the former Soviet Union and from English speaking countries.
For bringing to ESRA new energies and enthusiasm and for devoting your outstanding administrative abilities as past Co-chair, co-ordinator of many ESRA events and in particular as a caring Chairperson of the Welfare Committee.
In appreciation for your professionalism., dedication, tireless efforts and long hours spent in creating quality programmes on ESRA Vision and making sure there are always programmes.
With appreciation for all the time, expertise and energy you give as treasurer ofESA, as well as your enthusiasm and willingness to help in every field of our endeavours, and your understanding and encouragement of ESRA's community work.
For your steadfast commitment and perseverance in your efforts to compile a computerised index of the ESRA Magazines.
For your creativity, enthusiasm and perseverance, the promotion ofESRA and its projects in Tivon in achieving community support.
In appreciation for your professionalism, dedication, tireless efforts and long hours spent in creating quality programmes on ESRA Vision and making sure there are always programmes.
For your commitment to helping in the 'Hanadiv' office in a most pleasant and reliable manner, enabling us to call upon you whenever needed.
For your outstanding leadership in creating a successful ESRA team in Tel Aviv and for your commitment to ESRA in the many activities in which you participate in your charming and unassummg way.
For your initiative and organizational ability which have inspired so many parents of ADHD children, for your untiring volunteering efforts at SHIKMA, a home for developmentally challenged adults, and for creating a group of ESRA volunteers there.
For your untiring efforts and personal humane caring in teaching Hebrew to olim from the former Soviet Union imbuing them with a love for the language and Israel.
Marie & Lynne Sanders
For your work over the years in addressing and distributing ESRA Magazines, your activities with the Golden Age group in Herzliya and your many contributions to the English speaking community.
In recognition of your commitment, compassion and sensitivity to the needs of others in your work with the very special children in the Techushon.
In appreciation of your many years of co-ordinating the Job Seeker Service of ESRA, and your untiring efforts to assist new ohm in finding their way professionally.
In recognition of your commitment, compassion and sensitivity to the needs of others in your work with the very special children in the Techushon and in the Social Club for Teenagers.
In recognition of your commitment, compassion and sensitivity to the needs of others in your work with the very special children in the Techushon.
Aggie Van Der Laan
For your commitment, willingness to accept responsibility and determination to persevere until the end, with a smile regardless of the effort or extra work involved.
Betty & Ed Wolfe
For your dedication to the ESRA Nearly New store in Kfar Saba, the great amount oftime and effort you have given and your willingness to collect and prepare the clothing for resale.
In recognition of your many years of service as an ESRA volunteer and for your initiative in establishing, and running the popular discussion group in Ramat Hasharon.
For your many years of untiring efforts as a volunteer teacher, using art therapy as a means of reaching out to your pupils, both in the public school and in SHIKMA, a home for developmentally challenged adults.
ESRA MAGAZINE EDITORIAL BOARD
Merle Guttmann (Editor)
In appreciation of your commitment to producing the ESRA Magazine and your creative efforts and high standards which have made the Magazine truly outstanding.
THE OFFICE STAFF
Sue Ben Harosh
For your willingness and volunteering spirit in accepting tasks in addition to your official responsibilities and obligations, enabling the offices to function well and fulfil the growing needs of ESRA.
KFAR SABA GROUP
Charlotie Alhadeff Ziona Agulnik Harriet Eisenberg Shush Masel
For your outstanding commitment to your community, your concern for the environment and your initiative in creating activities for the benefit ofESRA projects in Kfar Saba.
Davld Margolis Simcha Hadari
For your involvement, enthusiasm and caring in making the ESRA Sewing Centres in Netanya for Ethiopian immigrants so special and successful.
Volunteer Awards 1999
Mimi Ben Aderet:
For your many years of service to ESRA in Kfar Saba and your tireless efforts in helping all new immigrants.
For your ongoing contribution to the children of ESRA Hadar Techushon & for your generosity in the giving of your home for them & other events.
For your many many years of outstanding organisation of the distribution of the ESRA Magazines in Kochav Yair almost single handed.
For your invaluable help and willingness to share your time and expertise whenever ESRA needs assistance.
For your outstanding leadership and hard work in helping raise funds in innovative ways for the projects of the ESRA Community Funds.
For your many years of continued service and tireless efforts on behalf of ESRA, and belief in our work.
For your outstanding organisational and professional skills and the time and hard work you invest in running the finances as Treasurer of the ESRA Community Fund.
For your outstanding organisational and administrative skills in co-ordinating the distribution of the ESRA Magazine & general involvement in ESRA's projects.
For your enthusiasm, inspiration and innovative projects for new immigrants and in helping establish ESRA Tel Aviv.
F or the devotion, spirit and life that you breathe into the Gan Rashal office with your easy manner and willingness to rise to any task & for being a valued team player.
For your commitment, enthusiasm and willingness to further the goals ofESRA.
In recognition of your outstanding initiative and devotion to the support group of parents of children with learning disabilities and for your continued involvement with ESRA since its inception 20 years ago.
For your caring, warmth and concern in visiting new immigrants over so many years at the Absorption Centre in Ra' anana.
For your generosity of spirit, kindness, patience and giving of your time in driving and organising the transport of children by members of the Hebrew Order of David, to and from the Techushon in Kfar Yona and now in Netanya.
In appreciation of your enthusiastic commitment, inspiration, deep thought and hard work in fundraising for our community projects. You engender team work and lead by example. Your generous spirit extends to home and office.
For your leadership and efficiency in all projects you undertake on behalf ofESRA.
Raanana Second Hand Shop Volunteers Award
The 2004 Volunteers Awards party was held at Beit Fisher on Monday 23rd February.
In attendance from the ESRA Executive Committee was Richard Stein, Chairman, Phyllis Bloch and Adele Hunter, Co-Vice Chairperson and Josie Shlain.
Motti Weiner was the M.C. and welcomed about 80 people and thanked all the volunteers who worked to make the event a success.
Motti in his speech told a few hilarious stories including the story of when he and Grant discovered that water had damaged many items in the 'Machsan' – they decided to throw away 8 bags of clothing as the contents were musty and smelly. Whilst they were throwing the clothing into the garbage a young waitress from the restaurant next door suggested they “take the clothes to a store in Ra’anana by Ahuza and Hankin Street, the name is the ESRA Charity Shop and they accept and sell old clothes”.
Motti then performed a skit on what goes on in the shop. He came dressed in a smart jacket – charcoal trousers, a white shirt and tie- black shoes. He then said he bought the outfit for 50 shekels at the shop instead of 90 shekels and he suggested that the audience encourage their friends to shop at the ESRA shop – “You too can be well dressed for very little”.
The awards were presented to the 7 awardees with a special award to Ruthann Fields who was a volunteer for 3 years and is now on the ESRA staff. The last award was to Barry Samuels who turned 90 – a special Birthday cake was presented to him and everybody wished him many more years in good health.
Citations for Shop Awards - February 2004
For your dedication and willingness to always be available to help in the ESRA
Nearly New Shop over many years and for never missing a week. You are truly one
of our staunchest volunteers and your advice and suggestions are always welcome
In recognition of your willingness to give time, on a regular basis over the
last seven years, to the ESRA Nearly New Shop and a special thanks for doing two
shifts every Sunday. Your efforts are much appreciated
For your loyalty and volunteering in the ESRA Nearly New Shop - you never miss a
week even though you travel a long way. You are always pleasant to the
customers and your dedication is much appreciated
For working in the ESRA Nearly New Shop for over 7 years and for always being a
most dependable and devoted volunteer as well as an outstanding cashier
For being a staunch, reliable and dependable volunteer in the ESRA Nearly New
Shop. Twice a week, in the afternoons, you are in charge, never letting us down
and always with a smile. Your help is much valued
In recognition of being a superb cashier, and the oldest volunteer in the ESRA
Nearly New Shop. Your commitment to helping us regularly every week is
Special Award to Gideon Noah
For never missing a morning at the ESRA Nearly New Shop and for arriving at 7.45
a.m. to help check all mechanical and electrical items. You meet every request
with a smile – we are indebted to you for your advice and help
Ruth Anne Fields
For being a loyal and dutiful worker for over eight years in the ESRA Nearly New
Shop. You are loved by customers and volunteers alike, who appreciate your
pleasant and even temperament
For being a conscientious and dedicated worker for more than six years in the
ESRA Nearly New Shop. Your commitment is much appreciated