THOUSANDS of Jewish Sydneysiders will receive the tools to observe a more personalised and meaningful Yom Hashoah commemoration in their own homes thanks to the launch of the Zachor Project.
This new initiative by the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies’ Shoah Commemoration Committee will see 1600 name reading kits distributed next week to senior students at Jewish schools and, through the NSW Board of Jewish Education (BJE), to Jewish students at public high schools.
Each kit contains a memorial candle donated by Woolworths Double Bay and Bondi Junction, a card with the name and details about a Holocaust victim, and a prayer to honour them and all victims of the Shoah.
Committee chairman Danny Hochberg told The AJN the aim of the project is to reach as many Jewish families in Sydney as possible, “to help and encourage them on Yom Hashoah to commemorate the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust”.
“The Shoah – one of the most significant and tragic events of Jewish history – needs to be remembered,” Hochberg said.
“But one of the challenges of it being more than 70 years since it was perpetrated was how best to commemorate it in the community … particularly for the new generation.
“We wanted to try to establish an annual form of commemoration that is as relevant and accessible as possible.
“The yahrzeit candles, and particularly the cards, personalise the form of commemoration.
“So whether you are a family directly connected, or indirectly connected, to the tragedy of the Shoah, it [the kit] really gives a face to the collective six million victims of the Holocaust.
“It’s up to us to keep the flame of memory alive.”
Hochberg thanked Woolworths for providing all the candles in the commemorative kits and the Jewish high schools and the BJE for -assist-ing with their distribution.
“For those families not receiving the Zachor Project packs through their children via their school, they can be ordered online for collection at various synagogues and the Sydney Jewish Museum,” he said.
“Our intention is to make this project grow each year and hopefully distribute 10,000 kits.”
Synagogues where ordered kits can be collected include Central, South Head, Kehillat Masada, Emanuel, North Shore Temple Emanuel, and Maroubra.
For online orders of Zachor Project name reading kits, visit www.holocaust.com.au and click on the ‘candle order’ box.