Project of the Month

These programs allow talented underprivileged teenagers to fulfill their potential by providing them with a challenging program of enrichment and leadership training at the Ruppin Institute of Marine Science. Talented 7th graders from all backgrounds of Israeli society in the lower socio-economic levels are chosen - programs run for 2 years.

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
enjoys traveling.

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
in Israel.