JFS recognizes important of Holocaust remembrance during Hanukkah

FLORHAM PARK, NJ — Jewish Family Service of MetroWest NJ is partnering with The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, also known as the Claims Conference, to honor Holocaust survivors with a candle-lighting ceremony on the third night of Hanukkah. This event, representing the second International Holocaust Survivors Night, will also be taking place globally in Berlin, Jerusalem and Moscow.

JFS MetroWest’s ceremony will be led by Gov. Phil Murphy and Holocaust survivor Roman Kent, who is chairman of the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Their Descendants.

“We are honored to welcome Gov. Phil Murphy and Roman Kent to our Hanukkah Cafe Europa program,” JFS MetroWest CEO Diane Squadron said. “We value our partnership with the Claims Conference, which enables us to meet the increasing needs of Holocaust survivors in our community.”

Holocaust survivor and Kristallnacht witness Charlotte Knobloch said, “This commemoration comes at a time when we just saw the passing of the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht. I remember the hate in the eyes of the raging crowd as well as the desperation and fear of my family and friends. At the time I questioned why nobody helped us. It’s now time on this Hanukkah remembrance of Holocaust survivors that we ask our friends, neighbors and the global community to remember those who were murdered and commemorate survivors.”

The Claims Conference is a longtime partner of JFS MetroWest, enabling the agency to serve more than 100 Holocaust survivors annually. Funding from the Claims Conference supports homecare, meals and socialization programs, such as Cafe Europa, for Holocaust survivors throughout the year.

“As we witness the passing of Holocaust survivors each day, there’s an urgency to honor them, listen to their experiences, recognize their suffering and raise awareness about Holocaust remembrance,” Claims Conference President Julius Berman said.