Florida congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen accepted the Emunah Humanitarian Leadership Award at the Miami Beach chapter’s annual dinner, which was held at the Alexander Hotel in late February. The theme of the evening was “A Tribute to Holocaust Survivors and Their Generations.” In her comments, Ros-Lehtinen underscored the need for vigilance against the threats of fascism as they present themselves today, and lauded the work of Emunah in strengthening Israel.
In addition to celebrating the world and work of Emunah, the Dinner recognized survivors as heroes in our time for their unparalleled efforts and accomplishments in rebuilding Jewish life. This theme was conceived by chairpersons Helene Berkowitz and Gita Galbut, and carefully developed with the input of their dinner committee.
At the inception of the program, all Holocaust survivors present came forward to lead the singing of Hatikvah. Representing the survivors was Phyllis Margules, a Miami Beach “snowbird” and matriarch of a family that has been a longtime benefactor of Emunah. Mrs. Margules recounted with strength and equanimity the basic facts of her Holocaust experiences.
Miami Beach friends of Emunah Rose and Sam Gurfinkel, Terry and Michael Lefkowitz and Elissa and Dr Ari Ciment represented survivor generations and contributed their own moving stories, divrei Torah and words of encouragement. Emunah’s well-received film was introduced with touching insight by Mrs. Ani Leiser.
Emunah’s mission is to alleviate the burdens of Israel’s social problems, to strengthen the fabric of Israeli society through education and social services, and to provide emergency services to its citizens during times of crisis. To learn more or to donate, visit www.emunah.org, or call 305-538-1222.
About the Author: Shelley Benveniste is South Florida editor of The Jewish Press.
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