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Holocaust Survivors: Names Not Numbers

Posted by Rhonda Wehner

Holocaust Survivors: Names Not Numbers

As the Coordinator of Jewish Care Services, I have been proud of my ability to help educate our staff about the Holocaust, and caring for aging Survivors as they come to our service. I have developed curriculums to teach children, adults in Nursing Facilities, and our palliative and hospice staff. I believe it is important to keep talking about this time in history and how events in the world currently have brought fears of another Holocaust to the forefront. Imagine how those Survivors still with us must feel? The fears they are likely living with? I go to many events that support Survivors or give me opportunities to hear their stories. For that reason, I was drawn to the Names, Not Numbers program when it was described to me by a Jewish Care Services ambassador who is a parent of students at Hillel Torah North Suburban Day School in Skokie, Ill., which is sponsoring the project.

After attending a screening of this project I knew we needed to be a part of it in the future, and now Jewish Care Services of Midwest CareCenter has become a proud sponsor of this innovative program at the school. The program "Names, Not Numbers: A Movie in the Making," is a film that culminates a year of learning for their eighth-grade students about the Holocaust. The students receive a year of classroom education, and teams are paired with a Survivor of the Holocaust whom they interview and record his or her story. By producing this film, the students help to ensure that the Survivors' message about the Holocaust will never be forgotten.

As part of our sponsorship, our Jewish Care Services staff will provide an in-service to the students about caring for these Survivors as they age and approach the end of life. We will receive screening rights to the film and will use it in educating our staff, members of the local Jewish community, and students in Jewish educational programs within our service area. Jewish Care Services cares for Survivors at the end of their life's journey, and often will guide our staff in providing culturally sensitive care to our patients. Our team of Rabbis, Coordinator and Ambassadors are always available to respond to queries from staff and families about managing the unique issues that arise for Holocaust Survivors.

We are honored to be participating with the staff and students of Hillel Torah in bringing this exceptional film to the greater Jewish community at-large, as well as the staff members at Midwest CareCenter who provide care for Survivors in our care. We are offering a first screening of the film on Wednesday, May 20, at 3 p.m. in our Atrium, 2050 Claire Court in Glenview. The students and Survivors who took part in the creation of this film will be invited to join us, along with our Midwest CareCenter staff. We will allow time for questions and will provide light refreshments during the program.

For more information, contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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