A Tradition of Honoring Local Survivors
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By Danielle Asif, Cleveland’s Shlicha (Israel Emissary)
My name is Danielle and I am a Shlicha, which means Israeli emissary in Hebrew. It’s my job to bring Israeli life and culture to Jewish Cleveland. And, this time of the year I want to bring you something very special.
Yom Hashoah V’Hagvurah is Holocaust Remembrance Day and a very important time in Israel. A few years ago, I was able to participate in a program called Zikaron BaSalon, which means “remembrance in the living room.” Many young people gather in an intimate space, usually a living room, to hear the story of a Holocaust survivor so that we can keep the memories alive and pass them down from generation to generation. This year, I bring this meaningful Israeli tradition to Cleveland.
For me, it was a very meaningful experience. When I heard this 90-year-old man’s story of survival, I was unable to speak. And when I looked around the living room, nearly every person was in tears.
When one of us asked him, how he managed to live without food and money, he simply replied, “Who one talked about food and money?” The things that we couldn’t imagine living without weren’t relevant to him; he was more concerned with surviving.
This was a powerful moment for all of us. It showed the deep gap between the generations, but as we listened, the experience brought us closer together. We sang familiar songs and told our own stories, and talked about the importance of listening to these stories from someone who was there.
I can still feel the power of that moment. And now I want to share this tradition with you as part of YLDay of Caring.
I hope that you will join me for this incredible experience spending time with Cleveland’s Holocaust survivors in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Here are the details:
What: YLDay of Caring: Zikaron BaSalon
When: Thursday, May 5, 2016 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
Where: Location details will be shared with you after you register!
Who: Jewish Clevelanders between the ages of 21 and 45 will gather at the homes of several young Jewish adults across the city to meet Holocaust survivors, listen to their stories, and engage in intimate and meaningful conversations about the importance of keeping the memory of the Holocaust alive.
You: You’re invited to join us and become part of this amazing Israeli tradition. Open your hearts to the stories of the Holocaust because we must never forget.