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Tikva in Israel

There’s an old sayng, that there are no former odessites. This rule works all over the world. The same can be said about school (for a teacher there are no “former” pupils!) or people, connected with school “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah”. And the significant event that was held in Jerusalem at the end of May confirms it. Here, not far from the center of eternal city, at 24, Kanfei Nesharim street, “Tikva-Israel” center was opened.

As Pavel Kachka, deputy of chief rabbi of Odessa and Odessa region tells, this idea was initially simple and “was in the air”: more than 300 pupils of Odessa Jewish school “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah” live today in Israel. They live all over the country and often they need help and support (to settle down in a new country is not an easy thing)… Of course, all these years graduates from “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah” school were not left all alone with their problems, or new things in Israel real life. And first of all many of them addressed rabbi Benzion Feist for advice, help and support. He is one of creators of Odessa school “Tikva”-“Or Sameah”, he was one of the closest assistants to Shlomo Baksht, chief rabbi of Odessa and Odessa region. He worked for several years in Odessa and now he lives in Israel, continuing “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah” page of his life.

Often help to pupils and their parents starts in airport Ben Gurion and it never ends… It’s not by chance, that when a little daughter of Benzion Feist was asked about the profession of her father, she replied: "He speaks on the telephone!" After years this support and care became necessary for more people, and it’s not very easy to pay attention and time to everyone. That’s why the idea to create a big center appeared, for communication and culture. The realization of this project became possible owing to old friends of Odessa Jews – Americans Ed Frenkel and Seth Gerzberg. And Benzion Feist became director of “Tikva-Israel” center.
What does the center looks like? Huge premises on the first floor of high office building, where there’s a place for everything – for meetings, communication, additional lessons on Hebrew and English language, for computer and fitness-machines, library and even kitchen. And also it’ll be possible to read a fresh issue of our newspaper…
— Mostly our graduates work here, - says Pavel Kvachka, - But of course, if more serious help is necessary, for example, an advice of an experienced lawyer, then no problem, everything is forseen. Experienced lawyers, business-consultants and other specialists will help those, who need them. And, actually, the center already gave the main thing to people: the feeling that you are not alone, that there are reliable shoulders near you…

Serious preparation and repair preceded opening of the Center. More than 200 graduates of “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah”, their parents, people in any way connected with “Tikva”-“Ohr Sameah” (such as Yakov Patsiornik, David Maklyarevsky, and former teacher of Hebrew at school Eli Petranker) came to celebrate this event from the whole country as they live today in Jerusalem, Haifa, Krayot, Kiriyat-Malahi…
- But it was not a problem to gather everybody for celebration, - says Pavel Kachka, - as connections are hold almost with everybody.
At center opening it was decided not to make an official part with speeches, etc. It was a celebration in the circle of family (with tasty food of course!), which lasted for several hours. Many of guests haven’t seen each other for years, so there was much to talk about. But if it was not enough time to tell everything – not a problem. These big meetings are planned to be frequently held in the center. But it’s not obligatory to wait for an invitation.
According to Pavel Kachka, one can come at any day – for advice, help or just to feel friendly atmosphere. “Tikva-Israel” (though it’s mostly youth-oriented) is always open for everybody!

Yelena Aizina

Газета "Тиква"

Tikva Children's Home