18 July 2008

Yad Vashem: Volunteer Appreciation

Yad Vashem held its Volunteer Appreciation Day recently in Jerusalem.

Among the 300 volunteers honored, wrote JFRA Israel president Ingrid Rockberger, were a core group of Jewish Family Research Association Israel (JFRA Israel) members who visit Holocaust survivors in private residences and in senior homes as part of Yad Vashem teams.

JFRA members have assisted for some 18 months in the Names Recovery Project, which helps to create Pages of Testimony during interviews with survivors to ensure that every victim is memorialized in Yad Vashem's Hall of Names.

The audience of volunteers - many of them Holocaust survivors - heard moving speeches and watched emotional films in the packed auditorium.

Yad Vashem's director Avner Shalev emphasized that "without the volunteers we could not do our work the way we do. You are an integral part of our work and part of the Yad Vashem family."

Adds Rockberger, "So far, only about half the 6 million who perished have an individual Page of Testimony; it is now a race against time as even child survivors are reaching old age."

Details can be found on Yad Vashem; Pages of Testimony can be downloaded and/or filled in on-line.

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