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News Around the Country




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Hadassah Check It Out Challenge

Baltimore Chapter of Hadassah held its annual Check It Out Challenge Race on Sunday, July 28th at Goucher College. National Board members and those attending the National Business Meeting participated in the 8K, 5K or one mile route. For the past 16 years this event has benefited the Check It Out Program, which educates youth about the importance of breast and testicular cancer awareness and prevention. Program participants are 11th and 12th graders in Baltimore’s city, county and private schools.

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Hadassah Opens Season with Renowned Violinist

The Orlando Chapter of Hadassah presented renowned violinist Matitiahu Braun at its opening meeting on August 27 at Congregation Ohev Shalom.

Violinist Matitiahu Braun

Matitiahu Braun is a native of Israel where he graduated from the Israel Academy in Tel Aviv. He came to America in 1962 to study at Juilliard where he received artist and post-graduate diplomas and was the recipient of the prestigious Naumburg Prize. In 1969 he joined the New York Philharmonic, a position he held until 2006. He also served as principal and solo violist with the Dallas Symphony in the late 1970s. Braun is known as a recitalist and chamber musician. He teaches violin and viola, works with students and professionals, coaching orchestras and chamber music groups, and presenting master classes.

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Raritan Valley Hosts Tower Architect

Raritan Valley Hadassah held its first tower fundraising event on July 21 at the Highland Park Conservative Temple-Congregation Anshe Emet. Addressing the 100 members who gathered for the event, Marcie Natan, Hadassah’s National President, said “It is your dedication that makes this organization so unique and special.”

Guest speaker, Arthur Spector, lead architect for the Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital Tower in Jerusalem explained the challenges of creating a modern and practical facility whose design would blend in with the historic skyline of Jerusalem, itself a hodge-podge of architectural styles reflecting the many peoples and nations that have governed the city through the centuries.

Arthur Spector, the lead architect for the new Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital Tower in Jerusalem, is joined by Hadassah National President Marcie Natan (r) and Ellen Lacy, chair of Raritan Valley Hadassah’s first tower fund-raising event.

“As physical beings, the patients’ psyche and physiology are both under attack,” said Spector. “We as architects need to provide an environment that helps ease the pain and helps heal illness. We as architects can push that button that helps in the healing process.” Many features were created just for this purpose including the healing gardens. Another therapeutic part of the hospital environment is the tower’s atrium. Spector showed pictures of the area, adorned with trees and plants and so spacious the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is able present concerts there.

While Spector called designing the tower, “one of the most challenging projects of my professional life,” it was also one that brought him great personal satisfaction. “I always thought if you could construct a building that was intelligently designed and well planned, it would be a place to bring everyone together — Jews, Arabs, and Christians,” he said.

As of July 24, Raritan Valley Hadassah had received pledges totaling about $9,000, with more expected, exceeding the event’s goal of $6,000, said event chair Ellen Lacy.

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Resale Shop Benefits Hadassah

The Hadassah House Resale Shop in Highland Park boasts donated treasures ranging from clothes and accessories — Coach, Burberry, Dior, Juicy Couture, were recently among the designer brands on hand — to CDs, books, and house furnishings that include the usual (chairs and tables) and the unusual (lava lamps and an autographed Tommy Hilfiger poster).

The Resale Shop is an initiative of the Chicago-North Shore Chapter of Hadassah and proceeds raised by the Resale Shop go towards support of the hospitals and medical research.

Minnette "Mitzi" Edelstein was the shop's first general manager when it opened nearly 50 years ago. She died in April at the age of 90. "She still volunteered almost up until the day she died," said Robert Van Kooten, the shop's general manager. "She was well respected and much loved. She was a mover and shaker. What I appreciated about her was her understanding of how to deal with the business and her practical approach.” Her vision for the shop remains undimmed.

You have your regulars, such as Yisroel Kamin from Chicago, who visits the shop every week or so to seek out Jewish art and books, when he visits his grandfather, who lives in Highland Park.

There are also regulars who became volunteers. Highland Park resident Pat Cegielski had been frequenting the shop for some 20 years. A former Chicago teacher, now retired, she was introduced to the shop by a friend and began buying items for some of her students in need.

"Then I noticed there's some really nice clothes here, and I started shopping for me," she laughed. "My husband says the Hadassah Hospitals should name a wing after me because I've bought so much."

Van Kooten, who is entering his fourth year at the shop, said he is overwhelmed by "the level of generosity shown to this charity, and the sincerity people have in their need to donate only to us."

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L.A. Chapter Hosts National President Marcie Natan

The Malka Group of the L.A. Chapter hosted National President Marcie Natan last week, where she spoke about Hadassah Medical Organization and her connection to their community, as well as having spent a summer in Iran in 1970.

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Topless in the Temple

On Sunday, July 21, women of all shapes and sizes, ranging in age from 21 to 86, gathered at Temple Bnai Israel in Florida, and took off their shirts.

Organized by the Florida Central Region to raise awareness for breast cancer the women got together to have their "ta-tas" painted to be photographed and modeled, to be sold as works of art at their upcoming gala.

Local artists painted the models with the picture of their choice, ranging from Van Gogh, Frida Kahlo and Keith Haring to Rosie the Riveter and college mascots.

"Many of the participants are not Jewish and have never before heard of Hadassah," wrote Renee Fromkin, co-chair of the Celebrate the Ta-Tas Paint Day.

"But they've all been touched by breast cancer."

Four of the models were cancer survivors: two women had double mastectomies and two women had single mastectomies. One of the models, a 50-year-old woman, had the site of her lumpectomy scar painted similar to Frankenstein's scars and next to the words "Shit Happens;" her breasts painted as angel and devil opposites. She shared the news that she was having a preemptive hysterectomy to remove her ovaries on the following day.

One woman, "probably a great-grandmother," according to Fromkin, set the tone for the presentation of canvases: "At around 9:00 in the morning she was happily and proudly showing us her 'girls'...she was a role model for all of us in showing us not to take ourselves too seriously."

"Our models were fat, skinny, toned and flabby - you name it - small breasted, breasts sagging to their knees, some women with implants," Fromkin wrote.

After hours of painting and photographing- with a break for treats and facials for the models- the day ended with a show of the canvasses.

"It was definitely the place to be in Pinellas County that day," wrote Fromkin.

The region, which got the idea from the Charlotte, NC Chapter, plans on writing a "how to" manual so other chapters can duplicate the event.

Contact Terri Tankel, Region President at ttankel@hadassah.org for more information.



See the final images here>>
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Highland Park Partners with HPNRC to Celebrate National Nursing Home Week

Highland Park Nursing & Rehab Center (HPNRC), in collaboration with the Hadassah House celebrated National Nursing Home Week with a week full of fun, free, and educational events for its residents and their families. On Tuesday, May 14th, HPNRC held a “French Day” with lunch at Café de Paris at noon and a French Collection Fashion Show at 2pm, highlighting fashions from the Hadassah House resale shop, a project of the North Shore and Chicago Chapter.

The week also featured a Country Western barbecue, luau party, staff appreciation luncheon, ice cream parlor and Memorial Day picnic lunch. “We are honored to partner with the Hadassah House,” said Francine Brodsky, marketing director of HPNRC. “We fully support their mission and it’s nice to partner with local charities and collaborate on great events.”

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2013 Associates' Golf Outing a Huge Success
Back: Event Chair Mickey Kaufman, Southern New Jersey Region President Sherryl Kaufman, Members of the winning golf foursome Chris Armstrong, Sean Duddy, Allan Lubarsky, Tom Barr, Committee member Dr. Norm Sorkin . Front: Associate Ned Weiss, with his wife Hattie, holding the Ned Weiss Trophy for first place foursome named in his honor.

On July 17, 2013, Hadassah Southern New Jersey Region held its11th Annual Associates Golf Classic at the beautiful Battleground Country Club in Manalapan. The weather was spectacular, and there were a full complement of 18 foursomes and sixteen MahJongg and card players. The proceeds of the event, most of which came frommajor sponsorships at a variety of levels, were targeted to advance the extraordinary work of Hadassah in the Orthopedic and Neurology Departments at Hadassah Hospital.

The event included a lovely buffet luncheon and the drawing for raffle baskets.The themed raffle baskets, all containing donated items solicited by committee members, enhanced the spirit of the event and significantly increased the proceeds.

The high point of the event was the introduction of the Ned Weiss Trophy, named in honor of golf supporter Ned Weiss. Ned, a long-time Associate and an event founder, has attended and played at every outing for the past 11 years.The trophy was awarded to the first place foursome and will be engraved each year with the names of the first place winners. Awards were also given to the second and third place foursomes, Longest Drive (male and female), Closest to the Pin (male and female), and Straightest Shot.

The event was chaired by Associate Mickey Kaufman, husband of Southern New Jersey Region President Sherryl Kaufman. Shelley Kaplan, a past Southern New Jersey Region president, was also instrumental in the planning and execution of the event.

Committee members each focused on a specific area – site contact, tournament details, marketing, publicity, sponsorship and raffle prize solicitation, player giveaways, and financial management.A dedicated golf website was established, which facilitated the marketing of the event and on-line registration. A cadre of volunteers, including the children of some volunteers, helped with registration and set up the day of the event.

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Baltimore Chapter Hosts Check It Out Challenge
Ruth Gursky, Mindy Bloom, Carol Rosenthal, Jill Sapperstein, Karen Ezrine at the Check It Out Challenge, a run and walking event to raise funds.

Read about it in the Baltimore Jewish Times

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Cincinnati Holds New Young Member Event

Approximately 25 young women met at the home of Sarah and David Wise on Wednesday, May 22, for a casual evening of wine, cheese and sweet nibbles, and to learn a little more about Hadassah. Sarah Wise and Laura Berger, new Membership Chairs of the Cincinnati Hadassah Chapter Board, with the help of President Bonnie JuranUllner, planned and held this third new member event to further acquaint young Hadassah members with the organization’s mission and local programming, as well as encourage other attendees who are not currently members to join.

Each event has attracted 25-30 women, some of whom have attended more than one event but each one also included new faces. After an hour of schmoozing and noshing, Sarah and Laura briefly shared with the attendees why they chose to join and got further involved with Hadassah, and why they would encourage the other young women to join as well.

National Board member Carol Ann Schwartz then told the group that Hadassah “saves lives around the globe” with its cutting-edge research and care of patients worldwide.

She asked the group if they were familiar with Cincinnati’s sister city Netanya. They were but were not aware that Hadassah has a Youth Aliyah Village for at-risk teens in a town right next to Netanya. It is called the Hadassah Neurim Youth Aliyah Village, and was established in 1948 to serve students evacuated from the Ben Shemen agricultural village during Israel’s War of Independence.

Bonnie JuranUllner told the group briefly why she chose to become involved with Hadassah, and ultimately to become chapter president, which was due to Hadassah Hospital saving her daughter’s life almost four years ago. She stated that they should all consider joining not only because of all the wonderful work Hadassah does in Israel, but because it is changing the lives of people across the globe with its research, development of new technologies and treatment of people from countries around the world.She mentioned that through the collaboration with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Hadassah is exchanging doctors, nurses, research and technology and in this way, “we are learning from them and they are learning from us.”

Bonnie JuranUllner gave the attendees a handout on ways to get involved in the local chapter once they have made the decision to join. Three women joined that night and a total of 11 young women have joined as a result of the three events.

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Cleveland Hadassah Enjoys High Tea
Loretta Magden, Illene Rosewater, Ellen Miller, Sandra Lieber, Molly Brudnick, Carole Weinberg, Rita Frankel, RevaZaretsky and IedaWarshay.

Members and guests of the Cleveland Chapter of Hadassah celebrated its second annual garden party, high tea, took place in the beautiful Norma’s Garden at The Gathering Place in Beachwood.

The exquisite garden, known as the healing garden, features a colorful array of flowers, shrubs and trees. The guests, many wearing stunning spring hats or chapeaux, including one guest resplendent in a stunning wedding gown, assembled on the terrace adjacent to the garden. They conversed about the exuberant array of nature’s bounty as they ate finger sandwiches, fruit slices and pastries on a sunny day in a heavenly setting.

Landscape architect Virginia Burt provided a guided tour of the garden’s many unusual features, including a circuit of 11 rocks and quiet meditation areas accompanied with the gentle sounds of falling waters. Following the garden tour, Rita Frankel, chair of the high tea, introduced Ellen Heyman, director of programming for The Gathering Place, who outlined the variety of programs and services that are offered.

The afternoon, concluded on high notes belted out by Rent-a-Yenta soprano Cheryl Eitman and mezzo soprano Beverly Simmons, accompanied by pianist Marshall Griffith. What a talented duo syncopated with energy, nuttiness, charm and grace. What a great afternoon for Hadassah, with President Arlene Wieder terrific in her message about Hadassah Hospital’s programs in Israel and everyone singing “Jerusalem of Gold”

Co-chairs Ieda Warsha and Lori Potash planned the glowing event, along with Frankel.

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New Orleans Chapter Sponsors Build-a-Bra Workshop
New Orleans Chapter Sponsors Build-a-Bra Workshop
Read about it on nola.com>>
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St. Louis Hadassah Continues to 'Walk on Sunshine'
Diane Maier (right) greets Joan Zucker, mother of the late Suzy Esstman, during Hadassah’s ‘Walk on Sunshine.’ Maier was a co-founder of the walk.

Despite a slightly overcast sky, St. Louis' Queeny Park radiated with sunshine on a Sunday morning in the beginning of June as Hadassah held its eighth annual “Walk on Sunshine” to benefit brain tumor research. Families with dogs walked through the park, which was decorated with balloons; music played over a DJ’s speakers; donated items in bright bags were raffled; and Ben & Jerry’s offered free ice cream to walkers who began their route at the playing of the song “Walking on Sunshine.” The atmosphere was fun and sunny, emulating the vision of Suzy Esstman, an active community member who planned the walk after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in 2004.

Esstman was highly involved in the St. Louis community; she worked with organizations like the Jewish Community Center, Hadassah and Parkway School District, and volunteered with the American Cancer Society and her sorority, Delta Gamma.

Event co-founder and close friend Diane Maier recalled that when Esstman learned of her diagnosis, she immediately felt a call to action. At that time she said, “I really think we should have a walk.” Maier said Esstman chose to manage the proceeds from Walk on Sunshine through Hadassah because of her involvement with the organization and the strides that Israeli doctors were making in diagnostic tools and healthcare for brain tumor patients. She said a particular triumph was the development of a blood test that could aid in tumor detection.

When Esstman passed away in 2007, Maier rallied her friends to continue the walk in her honor. However, it was important to Esstman that the walk not have a somber tone after she was gone.“Suzy always said, ‘There has to be music, there has to be ice cream.’ She wanted a party atmosphere with big energy, but people not forgetting the cause,” Maier said. “We’re carrying on her vision—that’s why the event is so important. Everybody’s smiling and laughing, there’s nothing down or sad because that’s not what she wanted.”

Maier said that through a new sponsor, St. Louis University, and a new program that offers the chance for individual sponsorships for runners, the most recent walk exceeded the revenue raised in 2012. She also stressed that although Walk on Sunshine is held in Esstman’s honor, the cause is universal.

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Hadassah Capital District Presents Certificate to the Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York

For the third year in a row, the Hadassah Capital District Chapter presented a certificate of appreciation to the Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York in appreciation for their $2,000 grant to support the Youth Aliyah Heritage Trip to Poland. Dorothy Ganz, Chapter President and Josie Kivort, National Board member, made the presentation for the support of this unique and meaningful trip. Accepting the certificate was the outgoing Chair of the Federation, Malka Evan and the new President and CEO, Rob Kovach. To Hadassah’s surprise, the Federation also showed a wonderful slide show of pictures gleaned from the Hadassah website for all to appreciate the program visually.

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Hadassah Southern California Shows "Shanghai Ghetto" Movie Night

Inspired by a showing of the movie at her synagogue, Tikvah Chapter President Helayne Levy suggested Hadassah Southern California hold a movie night to play "Shanghai Ghetto," a 2002 movie highlighting the flight of 20,000 Jews to Shanghai after World War II.

Another member, Giselle Dunst, suggested they get a speaker who is a refugee from the ghetto since her Jewish neighbor is from Shanghai.

She contacted her neighbor who told Giselle that she did not live in the Ghetto since she was born in Shanghai, and referred Giselle to Austrian-born renowned speaker and Life Member Trixie Wachsner. Trixie immigrated to Shanghai during WWII and was forced to move as a stateless refugee to the Hongkew Ghetto. She donated her time to speak.

Marge Chirchick got the idea to partner with Gina Raphael, whose Chinese daughter, Sydney, was soon to have her Bat Mitzvah. Gina thought this would be a perfect opportunity to enhance her daughter's cultural identity. The idea emerged between them to make this screening her daughter's bat mitzvah project, and Sydney raised over $1,000!

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Send us news from your region, chapter or group!

Each month we will bring you news of the events and programs of the local chapters and groups throughout the country. Share your success stories and facts in the areas of fundraising, education, membership and advocacy and help spark new ideas for others. Be sure to identify participants when you send photos. For more information contact Bobbi Kraft bkraft@hadassah.org.

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