Israeli “Royalty” and Hebrew U Alum Gil Hovav in Calgary
Israeli TV personality and critic, and Hebrew University alumni Gil Hovav delivered the opening night address at the Jewish Book and Art Festival in Calgary, co-sponsored by CFHU. In Israel, Gil Hovav is also known as part of a literary dynasty, the first of this famous family being his great grandfather, Eliezar Ben Yehuda. For anyone who has ever been to Israel, no city or town is without its Ben Yehuda street. The namesake of these streets is Mr. Hovav’s great grandfather, and was the subject of Mr. Hovav’s presentation, “My Great (and short) Great Grandfather and the Revival of the Hebrew Language.” In a nutshell, modern Hebrew is more or less the creation of this dedicated man and his family. Ben Yehuda used his son, Itamar Ben Avi, as his guinea pig to create the first native speaker of Hebrew by banning any other language from his home. Along the way, in order to discuss daily issues that were not mentioned in the religious texts, this family coined thousands of words that now make up modern Hebrew. Ben Yehuda wrote the first ever Hebrew dictionary and was also the editor of one of the first all Hebrew newspapers in Palestine. Mr. Hovav’s grandfather also worked in Hebrew newspapers and his mother was a big shot in radio. Everyone expected Mr. Hovav to work in media and when he took a job to support his studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem writing reviews of cocktails and bars in Jerusalem, his career as Israel’s premier food critic was started. Mr. Hovav delivered his story with a great deal of passion and humour to an enthusiastic crowd.
The mission of the Calgary Chapter of the Canadian Friends of the Hebrew University is to develop and promote awareness, leadership and financial support for the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. To raise awareness in the Calgary community of the activities, programs and research of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and encourage the involvement of lay leaders. To raise funds in support of the activities, programs and research of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem To encourage, recruit and assist qualified Canadian students who wish to participate in academic programs at the Rothberg International School at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. To encourage the development of academic ties between Canadian universities and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. To offer quality educational programs to the Calgary community that highlight the achievements and expertise of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Building Calgary - IMRIC connections: Calgary, CFHU’s newest chapter, is working toward establishing a formal link between IMRIC and the University of Calgary. Dr. Patrick J. Whelan,Calgary Volunteer Committee co-leader of the spinal cord and nerve regeneration program at the University of Calgary’s Hotchkiss Brain Institute, and neurobiologist Dr. Aharon Lev Tov, chair of IMRIC’s department of medical neurobiology, hope to establish a collaborative relationship between the two institutes in the area of spinal cord injury. A dedicated volunteer committee is working to further this goal, leading to a joint awareness and fund-raising event in the spring of 2011.
To contact the Western Region office call(604) 257-5133 or email Western Region Director, Dina Wachtel an email.
News and In The Press
Today, on December 3rd, Giving Tuesday comes to Canada! It is a new Canadian movement for giving, taking place each year and CFHU is participating. Support the CFHU Student Scholarship Fund!
This scholarship has been established in order to allow top Canadian students to benefit from the outstanding programs being offered at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
The giant-screen film Jerusalem, written and directed by Montrealer Daniel Ferguson, had its Canadian premiere at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau on Sept. 23 before opening to the public.