You Gave Our Students a Forum to Discuss Events of the Day
As protests and unrest rock the nation, your support allows Hillel to provide our students with numerous forums to discuss the issues and hear a wide spectrum of voices. We joined a virtual solidarity rally with Hillel International, and we are looking forward to having a candid conversation with Dr. Aaron Jordan, a Black Jew married to a Hillel director. We will continue to ensure that our students have a safe space to air their concerns.
You Help Us Recognize Hillel Heroes: Contest Winners Announced
Hillel of Rockland sponsored a contest to recognize the dedication of our students and alumni serving in important roles throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Applicants were asked to submit a brief essay describing their activities to help others during the pandemic. Three winners were chosen, each of whom received $100 plus $18 to distribute to the charity of their choice. The contest was sponsored by a grateful member of the Hillel board of directors.
The three winners are: Rafi Cohn, EMT-B, volunteer at Spring Hill Ambulance Corps
Elisheva Aaron - volunteer caregiver to an orphaned boy whose foster parent recently lost her husband to COVID-19
Jordan Katz, EMT, volunteer at Ramapo Valley Ambulance Corps
Excerpts from their essays:
Rafi Cohn described, “Carrying a 250-lb. patient who is having difficulty breathing down three flights of stairs to the ambulance is no easy feat. Now picture doing that during COVID-19, wearing a gown, gloves, mask, goggles, and face shield...even though we dreaded it we gowned up again and again with no stop in sight. I have images in my head that I will never forget.”
Elisheva Aaron wrote, “My recently-widowed neighbor, the sole caregiver to her orphaned seven-year-old nephew, is isolating at home. I arrive at her house every morning to put a smile on her nephew’s face....I hope to continue being a constant presence in this boy’s life during the pandemic. I cannot save the planet, but I know each child is a world of their own…”
Jordan Katz shared, “Since the start of the COVID pandemic I immediately doubled my shifts, often volunteering over 40 hours a week in addition to time at home listening on my radio for backup calls. I have responded to more than 100 calls in the last month alone... I also spent two weeks working in a NYC COVID hotel for people who cannot isolate at home, helping the quarantined patients...I also joined my uncle's medical team as a phlebotomist, drawing blood from employees at nursing homes.”
You Brought a Hero from Another Generation to a Wider Audience
Sam Bradin, Holocaust survivor, gave an unflinching and heartfelt talk on Zoom last month to an online audience of more than 150 rapt listeners. He described his boyhood in Poland, his harrowing experience in Auschwitz, and how he managed to survive.
Sam was originally scheduled to present his survivor testimony at RCC on Yom Hashoah. The event was cancelled due to COVID-19. Instead, in a tragic turn of events, Sam spent Yom Hashoah at the funeral of his grandson, Yoni Bradin, age 36, a husband and father, who lost his month-long battle with COVID-19.
Despite mourning his grandson, Sam courageously shared his compelling story with Hillel students and members of the community. After his talk, he answered questions about his survival story. For some of the younger people on the Zoom session, it was their first opportunity to engage in a personal dialogue with a Holocaust survivor. Hillel is grateful to Sam Bradin again for giving us this opportunity, and we wish him good health, simchas, and nachas.
Entertainment Night Reveals Hidden Talents
From pandemic poetry to COVID comedy, Hillel students captivated their fellow Zoomers during a recent online Entertainment Night.
Torah & Tea Sessions Explore Intriguing Topics
Torah & Tea, presented by Ani Lipitz and Hillel Director Shevy Oliver, covers contemporary issues like love, cheesecake, and more, through the lens of Torah and Jewish mysticism. Follow Hillel on Instagram @hillelrockland to find out about upcoming sessions.
To Zehava Baker, Treasurer, Hillel student board, on her engagement to Elie Mann.
To Rena Wainhaus on her engagement to Tzali Silver.
To Board Member Martin Goldstein on the passing of his son-in-law, Jason Weinger.
Have You Joined Our Hillel Heroes Legacy Society?
Huge Hillel shoutout to the following people (plus a few who wish to remain anonymous) who have designated Hillel of Rockland as a beneficiary in their wills through the Life & Legacy program:
Rabbi David Berkman & Carol King Berkman * Bert & Cathy Distelburger * Gary & Marsha Forman * Leslie Goldress * Martin & Roberta Goldstein * Lisa Green * Roberta Leitner * Rich & Melinda Levin * Michoel Muchnik * Rabbi Dov & Shevy Oliver * Kasriel & Zipporah Oliver * Ekka & Harrison Peck * Moshe & Tzipora Reitman * Shaina Reitman * Andrea Winograd * Gerri & Allen Zabusky
BE REMEMBERED FOREVER by the Jewish community with a gift to Hillel of Rockland in your will, trust, retirement plan or life insurance policy.