Grapevine: Tracing unit

What may not be common knowledge is that Magen David Adom, in addition to its humanitarian lifesaving services, has a tracing unit for the restoration of family ties.

Magen David Adom ambulances (photo credit: MAGEN DAVID ADOM)
Magen David Adom ambulances
(photo credit: MAGEN DAVID ADOM)
■ MORE THAN 70 years after the end of the Second World War, remnants of families are still finding each other. Even though so much time has passed, in many cases it is still not too late.
What may not be common knowledge is that Magen David Adom, in addition to its humanitarian lifesaving services, has a tracing unit for the restoration of family ties. Operating out of Tel Aviv, the tracing unit, headed by volunteer Susan Edel, operates with sister units in the International Red Cross as well as other international tracing services.
Since the establishment of the unit in 2008, 3,521 cases have been researched. In most cases, the unit succeeded in reuniting family members or retrieving documents verifying their faith. In six cases, pairs of siblings were reunited. Some of them had not known that their sibling was living. Over the past year, 145 requests were filed. Most requests are from people looking for relatives abroad.
To reach MDA’s tracing services unit call (03) 630-1464, fax (03) 730-5983 or email
■ EACH YEAR, International Jazz Day, organized by UNESCO, is celebrated on April 30. It brings acclaimed jazz artists from around the world to different countries to perform together with local musicians. This year, it will feature the Austrian trio Baldachin, which is coming to Israel under the auspices of the Tel Aviv-based Austrian Cultural Forum and will give concerts in Jericho and the Old City of Jerusalem, where it will also hold a music workshop. Performances will be on April 29 and 30 in Jerusalem and May 1 in Jericho.
■ DESPITE THE highly publicized breakup in the six-year romance between celebrity singer Eyal Golan and supermodel Ruslana Rodina, who is the mother of his youngest child, Golan isn’t sitting around moping. Aside from fulfilling his professional obligations, Golan, who is a keen soccer fan, was able to rejoice after his favorite team, Hapoel Marmorek, was elevated to the National League. Golan and friends celebrated the team’s victory at a private home in Moshav Ganei Hadar just outside Rehovot.
■ VISITORS TO Israel who haven’t been here for years, and return after a lapse of a decade or more, are amazed at the changes. Aside from the huge amount of continuing construction of both residential and commercial premises, the quality and variety of food has progressed beyond what anyone could have imagined. The food marts in shopping malls across the country offer something for every palate.
But one of the joys of yesteryear is gradually diminishing – and that is the European-style cake shop in which the showcases are filled with a wide assortment of luscious, creamy calorific offerings, with the slices more than large enough to justify the price. These days, the calories are still in the triple-digit range, but the slices are thinner, the prices are higher and the choices not as plentiful.
That may change, however, at least in Kfar Saba, where wellknown pastry chef Mickey Shemo has just opened a pastry shop in the G Mall, adjacent to Super-Pharm. One of the first people to exercise her sweet tooth by coming to sample Shemo’s culinary creativity was the mall’s CEO, Galit Segal.
■ ALTHOUGH THE expression “Let them eat cake” – which is widely attributed to Marie Antoinette, the queen of Louis XVI, when the people of France had no bread – has become a popular watchword, Peruvian chef Pedro Luis Guimet decided to offer something more substantial at the opening this week at the Sheraton Hotel in Tel Aviv of Peruvian Food Week. Guimet was in Israel to help promote the products of Superfood, which specializes in healthy foods from the Andes.
Like all visiting master chefs, Guimet had to adapt his recipes to the requirements of Jewish dietary laws, but as far as he was concerned, it was not all that difficult. Among the special guests at the opening of Peruvian Food Week were Peru’s Ambassador Gustavo Antonio Otero Zapata and Consul Mario Vargas.