Earlier this school year, Central applied for and was awarded the prestigious Microgrant from The Jewish Education Project. The school received grant money for the project proposed by Programming Director Mrs. Hadassah Frankel, which was called the “Dor L’Dor Links Fellowship.” In this fellowship, Central students had the opportunity to connect with grandparents who may have felt isolated due to the pandemic, while learning and exploring their family heritage. Seven Central students were accepted to this fellowship, which was fully funded by the grant.
The experience kicked off with a talk from British author and Mishpacha magazine columnist Riki Goldstein, who spoke to the students about the process of interviewing, transcribing, and writing a biography. The students then spent months interviewing their grandparents, and prepared their grandparents’ stories for print. Each student designed her own book, and the books were professionally printed and bound. On Friday, June 4, the fellows each received two copies of the book they created, one for each student and another copy to give to their grandparents.
At the concluding program, two participants, junior Eliana Brand and sophomore Maytal Chelst, spoke about their experiences as part of this program. Eliana shared that “over the past couple of months I have been FaceTiming my grandmother for over an hour each week to talk about her parents’ experience surviving the Holocaust. She told me things about my great grandparents that I’ve never heard before. This fellowship gave me the opportunity to connect with my grandmother during this difficult year. I will forever cherish the memories I’ve made talking and learning from her, and value the stories she told me.”
The fellows then celebrated this momentous project by serving some food of Jewish mesorah, potato kugel and Moroccan cigars, with the students and faculty, on their way out of the building for Shabbos!