In preparation for the 10th of Tevet – the Jewish fast day also designated by the Israeli Rabbinate as “general kaddish day” (yom hakaddish ha’klalli) for victims of the Holocaust and others whose yahrtzeits (anniversaries of their deaths) are unknown, teachers at the Jennie Sapirstein High School for Girls in Ramot hosted a wonderful team of creators and workshop facilitators.
“Creating a Memory” is a unique venture founded by an inspiring man named Martin Hershkowitz, a child of Holocaust survivors who grew up in a house where all talk of the war and its atrocities was forbidden. Over the year, Hershkowitz sought a way to break the “silence of the Holocaust” through songwriting and later established the Creating a Memory initiative, in order to allow future generations to approach and connect with the Holocaust from an open, personal and meaningful place.
Hershkowitz provided the school with full funding for holding a series of workshops, from a special foundation he set up specifically for the cause. Students were introduced to survivors, a number of texts and discussions, then parlayed their personal experience into a creative project in art, theater or creative writing.
“We were so happy to be able to give our students this special encounter with texts, with drama, and with the art of creation that provides them with a personal connection of their soul and emotions to something that is far away,” said literature teacher Ossi Noyek, one of the initiators who brought “Creating a Memory” to the school. “It was a very valuable experience, and now we are accompanying our students as they digest all that they have experienced.”