W W W .L I M MU DFSU.OR G
Limmud FSU Moscow
The program included more than 250 sessions and for the first time a special full program for children, for 2 different age groups
Global Summit 2018
The Global Leadership Summit took place in Warsaw, Poland together with volunteers from 11 locations worldwide
I S S UE 2 , JULY 2 0 1 8
Limmud FSU in NYC
400 Jewish young adults attended the event in the center of Manhattan â€“ the prestigious Columbia University
CELEBRATING BEN-GURION IN PLONSK
LIMMUD FSU NEW YORK 2018
GLOBAL SUMMIT IN WARSAW
BREAKING THE RECORDS IN MOSCOW
LIMMUD FSU LEADERS IN AUSCHWITZ
FIRST EVER LIMMUD FSU DELEGATION AT THE MARCH OF THE LIVING During the ceremony, Limmud FSU leaders light memorial torches in Auschwitz-Birkenau Limmud FSU delegation at the beggining of March of the Living.
or the first time ever, an official Limmud FSU delegation took part in the annual March of the Living in Auschwitz-Birkenau. It was comprised from 60 Limmud FSU’s activists and volunteers from the USA, Russia, Israel, Canada, Ukraine, Australia, Belarus, Western Europe and Moldova, who were meeting for the organization’s Global Leadership Summit, taking place in Warsaw. . During the emotional 3-km walk, two of the leaders of Limmud FSU (former Soviet Union), Matthew Bronfman and Aaron G. Frenkel, kindled torches at Auschwitz-Birkenau in memory of the six million Jewish victims of the Nazi Holocaust. The international entrepreneur Aaron G. Frenkel, President of Limmud FSU, said: “I light this torch in memory of my family members - grandmothers and grandfathers, aunts and uncles, daughters and Editor’s sons, and tonote my mother Fruma who was a prisoner here in AuschwitzBirkenau. May their soul will be bound up in the bundle of life.” International businessman and Chair of the Limmud FSU Steering Committee, Matthew Bronfman, said that his late father, Edgar Bronfman, former President of the World Jewish Congress, had fought for years for the rights of Jewish people worldwide: “I light this torch on behalf of all the volunteers of Limmud FSU, and in the name of the Jewish people who suffered beyond the power of imagination in this very place. I stand here in the shadow of my father who fought long and hard to restore honor and dignity to each and every Jew around the world.” The biannual Summit was sponsored by the UJA Federation of New York and Limmud FSU’s participation in the “March of the Living” was made possible thanks to its Chairman Shmuel Rosenman and Vice President, Aaron Tamir. Founder of Limmud FSU Chaim Chesler and co-founder Sandy Cahn : “The goals of the Summit is to enable activists and volunteers to meet colleagues and to share knowledge and experience in an atmosphere of joint learning and study with the aim of reinforcing identity, cultural, intellectual and spiritual engagement among the organization’s key personnel”.
Limmud FSU International Steering Committee Chair Matthew Bronfman and President Aaron G. Frenkel .
Limmud FSU Global Summit participants at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
GLOBAL LEADERSHIP SUMMIT 2018 Global Leadership Summit 2018 participants at the POLIN museum in Warsaw
This April, Limmud FSU hosted its bian-
nual Global Leadership Summit, this time in Warsaw, Poland, together with volunteers from 9 locations worldwide – USA, EU, Russia, Moldova, Canada, Australia, Ukraine, Belarus and Israel. In the framework of the summit’s various exciting activities made possible thanks to UJA- Federation of New York and L.A Pincus Fund, one of the panels was in particular intriguing - Chief Rabbi of Poland Michael Schudrich, Israel’s Ambassador to Poland Anna Azari, Limmud FSU Chairman Matthew Bronfman and AJC Central Europe Director Agnieszka Markiewicz spoke about the infamous Poland’s Holocaust law during a special session on the sensitive topic: “Some of the Jewish responses to the Polish law were irresponsible” stated Schudrich
Global Summit 2018 participants and Limmud FSU leadership.
in front of young participants from 9 countries. “To say that all the Poles are anti-Semites is not true. it’s hurtful.” Bronfman said during the discussion that “my greatest fear about the law is that it’s a part of something larger, and it’s not just an isolated moment. I truly fear the wave of nationalism around Europe as a whole.” Other activities at the 5-day summit included leadership development sessions, learning about different approaches to crowdfunding and fundraising for non-profits, open space sessions with a goal of experience sharing, a session about community engagement between conferences, visiting the new POLIN museum which presents the history of the Polish Jews, and many more. Founder of Limmud FSU Chaim Chesler said: “The goal of the Summit is to enable activists and volunteers to meet colleagues
and to share knowledge and experience in an atmosphere of joint learning and study.” Sandy Cahn, the co-founder, added that the summit was taking place “with the aim of reinforcing identity, cultural, intellectual and spiritual engagement among the organization’s key personnel.” “There were the most meaningful, emotional and educational 5 days”, said Irina Kolomey from West Coast, “I can’t believe how much we did and how little sleep we’ve got. I’ve had a chance to meet and interact with the most interesting people of similar background, working on similar project, thinking about the same issues. I actually made it to the summit in the last minute. And every night this week, as I came back to my room, I would say to my roommate – I can’t believe I could’ve missed it!”
Global Leadership Summit 2018 in Poland participants at a session about the Polish Holocaust Law .
Marching in Plonsk, credit - Yossi Zeliger.
CELEBRATING BEN-GURION IN PLONSK Hundreds of Ben-Gurion’s hometown residents marched during the 70th anniversary of Israel.
everal hundred residents of this small Polish town, the birth place of David Ben Gurion, the first Prime Minister of the State of Israel, took place in a procession to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Israel’s independence. The local citizens including children and teenagers participated in the procession and the official ceremony that followed. The event, which was organized by Limmud FSU, the March of the Living, and the Municipality of Plonsk, was joined by the Chief Rabbi of Poland, Michael Schudrich, Anna Azari, Israel’s ambassador to Poland and was led by the Mayor of Plonsk, Andrzej Pietrasik. The marchers passed several of the way stations of Ben Gurion’s early life including a square named after him in the same spot where was the house in which he was born in 1886, and the home of his uncle in which he lived for most of his childhood before immigrating to Israel in 1906. During the ceremony, the youngsters performed dances in traditional costume including to the strains of Israeli tunes such as Hava Nagila. Speeches were delivered by local and Israeli dignitaries including Schudrich, Azari, Chaim Chesler, founder of Limmud FSU, the deputy chair of March of the Living, Aharon Tamir and the town’s priest, Rev. Edmond
Rabbi Michael Schudrich said: “Today in this moving ceremony in Plonsk, we have witnessed the true Poland, and the reverse side of the true relations between Poland and Israel. A quiet and dignified procession, its face turned toward peace and brotherhood, with no counter demonstrations and without strain and tension. It is not at all clear that such an event could have taken place today in Paris, Stockholm or London.” Limmud FSU founder Chaim Chesler and initiator of the event said that “At today’s event in Płońsk we saw another Poland, that despite all the differences and obstacles, celebrating Independence Day of the State of Israel, together with young Jews from various countries around the world. From our point of view, this is a tremendous achievement, and I am glad that we could contribute even a little to the brotherhood and peace between the nations.”
Global Summit participants at the event.
Marching on the streets of Plonsk.
The dignitaries in front of Ben-Gurion’s house( light blue).
Local children dancing at the event.
SAVE THE DATES : LIMMUD FSU EVENTS IN 2018 October November November December December Limmud FSU Limmud FSU Australia Ukraine
Limmud FSU Canada
Limmud FSU Limmud FSU St. Petersburg Israel
After an amazing conference in September 2016, Limmud FSU Australia comes back to Sydney on October 2018. Registration: www.limmudfsu.org.au
Following an incredible mini-event in February, Limmud FSU Canada is back again with a 3-day event in October
In 2017 they broke records - and this December Limmud FSU Saint Petersburg will be back again with a packed and inspiring program.
After 1,000 participants in Odessa in 2017, Limmud FSU is back in Lviv with a packed program, hundreds activities and the best lecturers
After 2 consecutive and extremely successful conferences in Eilat, Limmud FSU Israel will be back in the capital of Israel in December
LIMMUD FSU SAINT PETERSBURG 2018 HERE WE GO!
ave the date - Limmud Saint-Petersburg team together with our Executive Director Roman Kogan launched In July the preparations for the annual Limmud FSU in the cultural capital of Russia. The event will take place following last year’s great success with a record number of participants - 750, high quality program and a great atmosphere. The meeting with the organizing committee was designed to plan and begin the preparations for the conference, with a some new volunteers joining the team coordinated by Iulia Anohina . The visit also included meetings with the majority of the local partners, including Israel’s Consul General Olga Slov, representatives of Nativ Jeanne Friedman Stayer and Guy Stayer, representative of the Russian Jewish Congress and the family center “Adain Lo” director Eugenia Lvova, JDC representative Elena Eibschits, Director of the Yesod Community Center Masha Aryeva, Jewish Agency Head of Representative office Orit Zuaretz, and also an examination of accommodation locations. The dignitaries took an active part in discussions about the options of cooperation during the year and ahead of the conference, and we expect the upcoming Limmud FSU in the winter to be no less successful and exciting than the last one!
MOSCOW BREAKS RECORDS A
bout 2,000 participants attended Limmud FSU’s 12th conference in Moscow, between April 19-22. The program included more than 250 sessions on wide range of topics, and also a special full program for children, with a wide selection of activities each hour, for 2 different age groups. In total, the conference included more than 350 different lectures, sessions, panels and performances. Keynote speakers at the conference included Russia’s chief rabbi, Berel Lazar, Israel’s Minister of Aliyah and Integration Sofa Landver, Limmud FSU President Aaron G. Frenkel, Israeli Ambassador to Russia Gary Koren, former Israeli Ambassador to Russia Dorit Golender, who is vice president of Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG), Head of Nativ Netta Briskin Peleg, acclaimed composer Sergey Nikitin, TV journalist Nikolay Svanidze and many more. Supporters of the event included Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG), Nativ, Claims Conference, Euro-Asian Jewish Congress, The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and more. Founder of Limmud FSU, Chaim Chesler: “We’re are extremely happy to be here, right after Israel’s 70 anniversary, to celebrate with more than 2,000 youngsters at our flagships event for the 12th time”. Sandy Cahn, Limmud FSU co-founder added that “we hope to continue to grow and strengthen our amazing community here in Moscow, it’s truly inspiring.” Daria (25) from Moscow: “It’s my first time at Limmud FSU. I was told by friend that it’s an amazing event that I have to experience, and after these 3 days I feel so lucky that I decided to come. This is the most powerful Jewish event I’ve ever been to here in Russia.” In the best tradition of Limmud FSU, the event was made possible by its team of local leaders and volunteers, including the Project Manager Galina Murakhovskaya, Mikhail Libkin, Alexandra Livergant, Alexander Piatigorskiy, and others.
Havdalah at Limmud FSU Moscow 2018, credit - Eli Itkin
Lecture at Limmud FSU Moscow 2018, credit - Eli Itkin
Participants at Limmud FSU Moscow 2018, credit - Eli Itkin
FIRST EVER LIMMUD FSU NEW YORK IN MANHATTAN 400 Jewish young adults from the Russian-speaking commu-
nity attended Limmud FSU’s conference in New York on May 6, taking place for the very first time in the center of Manhattan – the prestigious Columbia University. During the event, a large anti – BDS protest took place in the center of the campus, led by prominent Jewish world figures such as Limmud FSU Chair Matthew Bronfman and Rabbi Marc Schneier. The program of the conference included dozens of lectures, sessions, panels and performances on wide range of topics. Among them: a panel with the businessmen and philanthropists Leonard Blavatnik and Matthew Bronfman, session of the outspoken transgender activist and a former Hasidic Rabbi Abby Stein on her life journey, special session by Professor Alan Dershowitz on BDS and Israel, and Howard Rosenman, who told his story as an academy award winning gay Jewish producer. Other speakers at the event included Boris Burda from Ukraine, Ruta Vanagaite from Lithuania fashion designer Leonid Gurevich, IDF senior Grisha Yakubovich from Israel and more. Founder of Limmud FSU, Chaim Chesler: “We’re are extremely happy to be here for the first time ever in the Columbia Universi-
ty, on the 70th anniversary of Israel, to celebrate with hundreds of despite the helpless BDS efforts to boycott the Jewish state”. Supporters of the event included Genesis Philanthropy Group, Claims Conference, IDB Bank, Tom Blumberg and Covenant Foundation, that supported the event with a brand-new grant for volunteer education and leadership training program for United States based Limmud FSU volunteers. The first activity was held in COJECO on May 3 (Pre-conference volunteers learning session). Sandy Cahn, Limmud FSU co-founder said that “Thanks to the Covenant foundation grant, we have begun to create an enhanced network of young leaders who are educated in Jewish history, heritage, and culture, and who have the connections, skills, and tools to shape the future of the Russian-speaking Jewish community in the United States.” In the best tradition of Limmud FSU, the event was made possible by its team of local leaders and volunteers, including the Project Manager Noam Shumakh – Khaimov, co-chairs Alina Bitel and Roman Sidler, as well as volunteers committee chair Estee Bardanashvili, programming committee chair Nina Faynberg and many others.
Pro-Israel rally at the event, credit - Igor Khodzinskiy.
L-R : Tom Blumberg, Chaim Chesler, Len Blavatnik, Sandy Cahn, Matthew Bronfman.
Kids program, credit - Igor Khodzinskiy.
Sessions, credit - Igor Khodzinskiy.
The unveiling of a
memorial plaque in the first Holocaust museum in Israel (established in 1948) was initiated by Limmud FSU, the Conference for Material Claims against Germany and the March of the Living Organization. The ceremony began in the morning hours (July 2) and was followed by the unveiling of the memorial plaque right next to a “Tree of Life”, a 70-years-old fruit tree that was dedicated to Elie Wiesel. The event was held in the presence of leading dignitaries, including Ze’ev Elkin, Minister of the Environmental Protection and Jerusalem Affairs; Shlomo Gur, Deputy President of the Claims Conference in Israel; Chaim Chesler, founder of Limmud FSU; Rabbi Yochanan Fried; Dr. Joel Rappel, founder and former director of the Elie Wiesel Archives at Boston University; Marina Koritny, Head of Aliya Promotion Department in the World Zionist Organization ;Rabbi Yitzhak Goldstein, Chairman of the Chamber of Holocaust; Marina Kontsevaya, Jerusalem Council member and other personalities. Minister Elkin said at the ceremony, “For me,
the books by Elie Wiesel in Russian translation that were available to us in the Soviet Union were an essential element in the attempt to understand the Jewish nature; his words touched the very soul of the Jewish people. There is, therefore, nothing more symbolic than a plaque here in the first museum in Israel dedicated to the memory of the Holocaust, in a place that was for the Jews during many decades, the nearest place to the Western Wall.” Chaim Chesler said, “Elie Wiesel loved Jerusalem to the depths of his being. The decision to mark the second year of his passing by affixing this plaque here was for us an issue without question.” Shlomo Gur added: “Elie Wiesel was the clear and articulate voice of those who perished in the Holocaust and those who survived the inferno. He devoted his life to the struggle of good over evil and today we are here to commemorate his life’s work and hismission. He spoke out against the consequences of indifference and standing aside, and we are obliged to follow his lead and make every effort to educate the coming generations in the spirit of his legacy.”
REMEMBERING A memorial plaque to Elie was unveiled at the ELIEWiesel WIESEL AT THE CHAMBER OF THE HOLOCAUST
LIMMUD FSU NY TEAM CELEBRATES SUKKOT
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GETTING READY FOR LIMMUD FSU UKRAINE I
n the framework of the preparations for the upcoming Limmud FSU Ukraine 2018 that will take place between November 1-4 in Lviv, a two-day meeting of the organizing commettee members took place on March 16-18. Planning, discussions, problems resolving, working on concepts, new ideas, program everything that is cruical for the event. Also, a special meeting was held with the mayor of Lviv - and a great supporter of Limmud FSU, Andrii Ivanovych Sadovyi . The meeting dealt with the arrangments needed to be done for the annual conference.
Meeting of the organizing commettee in Lviv, March 2018.
Limmud FSU Ukraine Chair Osik Axelrod and Project Manager Galina Rybnikova with Lviv Mayor Andrii Sadovoyi.
ISRAEL CELEBRATES 70: OFFICIAL RECEPTION OF ISRAEL’S EMBASSY IN RUSSIA
immud FSU President Aaron G. Frenkel and founder Chaim Chesler represented the organisation at the official reception of Israel’s Embassy in Russia in the framework of Israel’s 70th anniversary. Among the participants: Israel’s ambassador to Russia Gary Koren, Chief Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar, Minister of Aliyah and Integration Sofa Landver, Head of Nativ Neta Briskin - Peleg, “Habima” Director Odelia Fridman and many more. Chaim Chesler, Aaron G. Frenkel, Lev Levaev, Alexander Mashkevich, Cheif Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar.
OUR SPONSORS AND DONORS, WITHOUT YOU NOTHING OF THIS COULD BE POSSIBLE : • Matthew Bronfman
• Eva & Louis Galpern Foundation
• Aaron G. Frenkel
• Fooksman Family Charitable Fund
• Ronald Lauder
• Michal Grayevsky
• International March of the Living
• Conference for Jewish Material
• Jim Joseph Foundation
Claims Against Germany • American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC)
• Israel Bonds • Joe Cooper • Keren HaYesod
• Diane Wohl
• LA Pincus Fund
• Euro-Asian Jewish Congress
• Merill Kraines
• Jewish National Fund (KKL)
• Michael Zurakhinsky
• Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG)
• Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel
• Nativ - Israel Prime-Ministers
• Ruben Landsberger
• Sandra and Stewart Cahn
• Koret Fund
• Samuel Bronfman Fund
• Yuri Zelvenskiy
• Shulem Fisher
• Blavatnik Family Foundation
• Wilf Family Foundations
• Jewish Agency for Israel
• World Zionist Organization
• Benevity Fund
• World Jewish Congress
• Covenant Fund
• UJA Jewish Federation of New York
• Dr Nona International
• UJA Jewish Federation of Greater
• Edward Mermelstein • Eugene Grant
Toronto • Ukrainian Jewish Encounter (UJE)
JOIN OUR FAMILY - BECOME LIMMUD FSU SUPPORTER TODAY!
www.SupportLimmudFSU.com LIMMUD FSU LEADERSHIP MATTHEW BRONFMAN, CHAIRMAN OF THE INTERNATIONAL STEERING COMMITTEE AARON G. FRENKEL, PRESIDENT EDITOR AND DESIGN - NATASHA CHECHIK
CHAIM CHESLER, FOUNDER
PUBLIC AFFAIRS DIRECTOR, LIMMUD FSU
Limmud FSU International Foundation EIN 26-1870256 www.limmudfsu.org 80 Central Park West, Suite 2D, New York NY 10023, USA
SANDRA F. CAHN, CO-FOUNDER DIANE WOHL, SECRETARY GENERAL ROMAN KOGAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR