1880 Society members celebrate Chanukah


14 December 2004 In a ceremony on 14 December at ORT House in London, coinciding with the last night of the Jewish festival of Chanukah, six members of World ORTs elite major donors organisation, The 1880 Society, were presented with their commemorative medals. Mrs Jenny Rosner receiving her commemorative medal from World ORT president, Sir Maurice Hatter Layleaders and staff of World ORT and British ORT attended the awards at which World ORT President Sir Maurice Hatter, Jenny Rosner, Eduardo Azar, Clive Marks and Professor David Wingate received their medals. British ORT Vice-President Ivor Connick received the medal on behalf of Geoffrey Lawson, who was unable to be there in person. Mrs Jenny Rosner is invited to light a Chanukah candle Following a candle-lighting ceremony for the last night of Chanukah, participants gathered to watch a video made for the occasion by students from the ORT Technology School 1299 in Moscow. Speaking in English, four students told of their enormous pride at being able to attend this school, which had helped them to achieve so much in their studies. The students concluded with their own Chanukah candle-lighting ceremony. Following the video, Jenny Rosner, who for the last two years has sponsored the highly successful ORT English Summer School program for students from Israel, remarked that next year, she wants to invite some ORT Russia students to also take part in the Summer School. Speaking on the video, one of the students, Dasha Gulay, said she came to the ORT school, which last week celebrated its 10th anniversary, as a 10-year-old because it was Jewish and because of the high standard of its education. Now I can speak Hebrew, and know a lot about Israel and the Jewish people, the 16-year-old said. It was at this school that I used a computer for the first time in my life. Now Im a computer genius! Stas Isaev, 14, said that when he arrived at the ORT school he couldnt speak English well. Now you can see how I speak English well enough to tell you what I think, he added. Michael Dementiev, 15, also appreciated the schools high quality Hebrew and English language teaching and was thinking of a career in either law or journalism. After the video, World ORT Director General Robert Singer said: When you think about how ORT has re-established itself in Russia over the past 10 years its really a miracle. So its appropriate to think of our operations there at Chanukah time. Members of The 1880 Society receive their commemorative medals Mr Singer went on to thank the lay leaders present, particularly members of The 1880 Society, for making the miracles happen with their commitment and support. Mr Azar, an emerging-market specialist and portfolio manager based in London, was thanked for the support he has given to ORTs Regeneration 2000 and Regeneration 2004 projects in Dniepropetrovsk, Ukraine, which include a technology centre, computer laboratory and an upgraded computer classroom. Mr Azar is also heavily involved in the setting up of an ORT technology centre in Tucuman, Argentina, a collaborative project with the Chabad organisation serving the towns 5,000-strong Jewish community.Mr Marks, has supported numerous ORT projects around the world as trustee of the Lord Ashdown Trust, which specialises in funding Jewish education, for about 30 years. Among the many positions he has held in the not-for-profit sector are director of the World ORT Union Trust and chairman of the London College of Music. He is currently leading the research for World ORTs project to put on CD-ROM music that was performed or written in concentration camps, ghettos, displacement camps, or by partisans, during the Shoah. Professor David Wingate received a medal on behalf of the Harold Hyam Wingate Charitable Foundation, on whose board he sits together with his brother Roger. The Foundation is the principal backer of the annual Wingate Seminar, which brings together senior educators from ORT institutions around the world. Geoffry Lawson, together with his wife The Hon Carole Lawson, supports ORT and many other organisations through the Carole and Geoffrey Lawson Charitable Trust. In particular, their generosity allowed the inauguration in 2001 of the ORT Moscow Vocational Training Centre (VTC). Situated within the ORT Moscow Technical College, the VTC helps the local Jewish population compete in the job market by providing them with Information Technology training opportunities, and provides advanced IT curriculum and technical support to the College. Mrs Rosner, who made aliyah with her late husband Michael in 1948, has been a major support of ORT since 2001. In that short time, she has changed the organisations calendar by instituting and supporting the World ORT Rosner English Summer School. This year, 19 ORT Israel students were brought to London for intensive English language tuition. The students use their improved language skills to tutor schoolmates back in Israel. Sir Maurice and Lady Hatter are long time major supporters of ORT and have invested time and money in many projects around the world. In addition to the annual Hatter Technology Seminar held at ORT House, London, Sir Maurice has sponsored many new technology courses, directly benefiting thousands of students. He is a Governor of the ORT Braude International Institute of Technology – where he endowed the Chair of Control Systems – and an Honorary Fellow and Governor of ORT Academic College for Teachers in Technology at the School of Engineering in Jerusalem. He is strongly committed to the development of new ORT schools in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Ukraine.