Savyon Lodge

Jewish Aged Home

 

P.O Box 151 I Bulowayo I Zimbabwe
Contact: Lanis McLarnon
Phone: 263-9-210618
Website: www.africanjewishcongress.com












About us

Situated just out of town, on the road to the airport, the Lodge is able to enjoy a tranquil atmosphere, much to the delight of our current 9 residents of which half are Jewish.

Due to the harsh economic climate in Zimbabwe, we found it necessary to open our doors to other denominations, who are equally happy to enjoy their retirement at our home.

The foyer is warm and welcoming, leading out onto the patio, which overlooks the wonderful secluded sunken garden, designed by a long-standing resident.

The average age of the residents is 90 years, which is no mean achievement in any environment, and we pride ourselves in accomplishing this, which can only be attributed to lack of stress, loving care and nourishing food from the kosher kitchen.

As well as three meals, a day, afternoon tea is usually served with freshly baked cakes or cookies. Birthdays, of course, are always a time for celebration.

Special meals are prepared for Chagim – the Pesach Seder is the piece de resistance! Our verandah is converted into a Sukkah and many memorable meals have taken place there.




Our History

Savyon Lodge, the only Jewish retirement home in Zimbabwe, situated in Bulowayo, is probably the apple of the Jewish community’s eye, with impressive furnishings, paintings and an aura of peace and serenity.
In 1960, it was decided to establish a home for the elderly residents of the Federation. The land was allocated by the City Council of Bulowayo in co-operation with the Trustees and Executive Councils of neighboring old age facilities.
Government funding and money from the State Lottery Trustees was made available, and Jews throughout the country sent support pouring in.
Plans were drawn up and an interim committee, under the chairmanship of Ellie Zacks, was appointed and given authority to proceed. However, work on the first stage only commenced in 1966, with the foundation stone being laid by Mr Zacks, who was by then, President of the home.

The first stage of the home was initially completed in 1968, after thirteen months of hectic activity.
Finally, in 1976, when room was made for a further 26 persons, accommodation had risen to 45.



Tea and Commitment in Zimbabwe Savyon welcomes the Zimbabwe community to a delightful tea every Thursday afternoon, next time you are in town please join them!
We reached out to Ted, one of our consistent and dedicated American donors to find out what inspired him to support a Jewish Institution so far from his home. He quoted the Torah verse Leviticus 19:32 "You shall stand for the hoary hair head and respect the face of the elder, and fear your God, I am the Lord." When asked why specifically Savyon Lodge he said “My interest in Zimbabwe stemmed from personal research into the history of Rhodesia where I discovered her Jewish community. Upon learning of the remaining members of the Zimbabwe Jewry, and the continuing economic hardship endured by the country's pensioners I wanted to contribute in some way to the kahal (considered the local governing body of a former European Jewish community administering religious, legal, and communal affairs).” Ted continued to say that “while it seems my efforts alone are insignificant, they become greater combined with the efforts of others.” Savyon Lodge had a plaque made in his honor for his consistent and continued support of the Zimbabwe Jewish community.
This article, written by Akiva Novick from the Yedioth Ahronoth, entitled "The Last Jews" has been roughly translated from the original Hebrew. It tells the story of the tiny and dwindling Bulawayo Jewish Community. "The Last Jews" By Akiva Novick In the Jewish school the Muslims and Christians sing Hava Nagila. In the Jewish old-age home the people talk quietly about the dictator Mugabe who stole their properties and assets and left them in poverty. In the Jewish cemetery we find the gravestones of the Fischer couple, the late parents of Stanley. A rare and unique visit to one of the tiniest and most remote Jewish communities in the world, just before it disappears altogether. A blue and White Flag -raised on a mast outside “Carmel” school Bulawayo, Zimbabwe flew between the tops of the trees. 210 female and male students lined up for a Shabbat ceremony the boys with kippoth on their heads, and the girls had memorized the words to Passover songs that they had just learned. The ceremony began at seven-thirty exactly: washing hands, sanctification and blessings. The Shabbat candles and the aroma of freshly baked hallah bread. Then there is singing “Thanks do I” (modeh ani) and “heveno shalom aleichem” which filled the hall, and then “Hatikva”. Even in the depths of Africa “Carmel” children proved that Judaism is still alive and kicking. Just a little detail spoils the picture - at the school there is not even one Jewish student. Muslim, Christian and Hindu sects are taught in the Jewish community school in Bulawayo but this once grand community is dying. A community for the past 120 years consisting of thousands of Jewish people flourished here. Today there are 65 people and their average age is well over 70. Meanwhile under huge mahogany trees in the school's grounds Muslim children learn about the evil king Pharaoh who fought the Jews and the chosen people. The boys tell us enthusiastically how they dressed up to be “Queen Esther, and the Jewish Mordecai”, and how the Jews ate “manna”. Not less than 2,000 children are on the school’s waiting list. It is considered one of the best in Zimbabwe. “We are preserving the tradition out of respect for the community, who own the school”, explains Christian Director David Ricks, the Head teacher. “We have enormous respect for Jewish values, and these are universal things that speak to each parent”. How long will it last? “I honestly do not know. I'm leaving soon and already there are voices in the Jewish community who want to sell their ownership of the School. They ask why they have to fund Jewish education for children Christians and Muslims. Very logical that it will one day be a Christian school.” Memories from the cell I landed in the African country a week before a crucial referendum on a new constitution. On paper, Zimbabwe is conducted in a democratic manner. Every few years, citizens go to the polls and exercise “their desire” to choose Robert Mugabe as president. None of the people on the streets of Bulawayo could tell me what is included in the proposed Constitution, but only that it further secures Mugabe's rule. Quietly, almost all said they intend to vote against the constitution, but everyone was also clear that the constitution will pass. This is probably related to mysterious events affecting almost all who dared run against the President. Many feel that Mugabe released the country from white oppression in 1980 and then began to suppress it himself. But strangely the streets of Zimbabwe do not feel like a totalitarian regime. No sign of aggressive police on the streets, like the Gestapo in Nazi Germany or the secret police in Iran. Instead, there are indifferent police on bicycles, soldiers doing fitness training on the street in their camouflage pants and T-shirts. Two days after I landed I saw a group of soldiers at the corner of a street who marched down Main Street. “They looked at an enthusiastic tourist who took out a camera and captured the moment. Within 3 minutes I realized just what Zimbabwe is all about.” A police car blocked us on the highway with their car and two soldiers entered our vehicle. They instructed us to “follow the police car,” My host Hilton Solomon, head of the Jewish community in the city was told by the police “You are detained on charges of Photography.” The police station was actually a collection of huts in the bush surrounded by a high barbed wire fence. A large fat officer in khaki shorts jumped out of the leading police car and started shouting at us. It seems that the picture I took embarrassed him. Solomon tried to calm him down, and gave him the first excuse that came to his head: “See, the guy here was a soldier in the Israeli army and is excited to see soldiers.” The interrogation room looked exactly as you imagined: Wallpaper covered floor in peeling burgundy, shocking turquoise walls, a broken wooden table in the middle of the room and a bench along the wall above with a picture of a smiling Mugabe -in whose name we have been arrested. I sat down on the bench and two soldiers sat on either side-like a witness in a standard crime. They smelled really badly and reminded me of the “fragrance” of African prisons. Sweat began to emerge, not just from the heat. Several minutes later, the officer entered the room and Hilton turned to him: “Do you know I am? I am Hilton Solomon.” The officer's expression changed almost immediately. Solomon is the Director of a large grocery store in the city center, which gives him the status in this poor country -if you will – of the Rami Levi of Zimbabwe. The police take me to a separate shed without light or air. I quickly separated the memory card from the camera and put it in a sock. After a second, I understood that if they found the card there I'd be in a lot more trouble and returned it to the camera. Major Svangaga the police station commander finally entered the shed and made sure I deleted the image. Meanwhile, outside Hilton meets four men in black suits. They apologized to him and explained that too many soldiers saw me taking pictures and the police had to “do a show for them.” Meanwhile I am not updated and I sit with Uri the Jewish Agency emissary and together we look down the barrel of the FN rifle directed at us by a soldier. The three interrogators enter the room and blast us with questions to ascertain if we are spies or worse – journalists. I'm not joking with them and give details of my identity – a student from Jerusalem - visiting Bulawayo to do the important custom of putting stones on the tombstones at the Jewish cemetery. In front of the station is the cemetery and I invite them to check the tombstones to see the stones for themselves and they will see I have not lied. We are taken to the office of the commander of the camp. This time he is nicer and tells us that the period before the referendum is particularly sensitive. “Our enemies are looking for us now,” he says, and does not understand Zimbabwe's real enemy was smiling at him from the picture on the wall. Hilton announced to all the police officers that they are welcome to come and have a coke in his shop, they promise to come and shake our hands. On the way back Hilton tells me about a friend of his that accidentally took a picture outside State House - the summer home of Mugabe in Bulawayo and who was immediately jailed. The city of killing The first Jews came to Zimbabwe at the end of the 19th century. They fled on ships from Lithuania and the Russian pogroms and reached the British colony established by Cecil Rhodes. Later the country would become Rhodesia. During the Holocaust Jews fled from Europe and by the 1960s there was a flourishing community with thousands of Jews, mostly rich, integrated with the local white elite. There were diamond and gold mines, large textile and electrical engineering factories as well huge farms which contributed to a greatly enriched community. After a protracted war between black militants and the white-run minority government everything collapsed for the whites. In 1980 the whites capitulated and the country became majority ruled Zimbabwe. Robert Mugabe gradually dispossessed the whites form their lands and businesses and the Jewish community is now a tiny minority of about 150 souls within the white minority of some 25,000. In the capital Harare there are about 100 Jews, who asked that we not write about them so that they will “not be known”. Bulawayo remains a tiny community of which we had a rare glimpse on this visit. The Third World experience of Zimbabwe begins as soon as the wheels of the small plane touched the ground. The J N Nkomo named after the resistance leader who fought the whites is more a field than anything to do with aviation. On this plot of land in the heart of wheat fields, at the end is a small barn. This hangar is the terminal. From its asbestos ceiling hang wires, one side is devoted to incoming flights – with desks for Customs, passport control, and a pile of suitcases. The other side is for outgoing travelers including a clerk that writes boarding cards with a pen, and a red carton box that acts as a duty-free stand. Twenty foot from the terminal on the tarmac is parked a red Massey Ferguson tractor, and even the farmers do not even lift their heads when planes land nearby. The meaning of the name Bulawayo is "City of the killing." It has been there for about 150 years, when Lobengulo, a tribal leader used to kill anyone who annoyed him. Now they do not need to kill. Life expectancy in Zimbabwe is the lowest in the world, and according to the UN World Health Organization - average men will live until the age of 37, and women not last much after the age of 34. From the air Bulawayo seems to a be a huge refugee camp - a million people in shacks, dirt roads, buildings, surrounded by huge dark green savannah and abandoned farms. On the ground it does not look much better. Hilton Solomon (58), our host, provides the main support to the tiny community. He looks like Chico Tamir and his thick arms are about the same as his voice. He takes us to the vibrant center of the community – the Jewish old age nursing home “Savyon”. Three floors of luxurious conditions, where only 12 elderly men and women live, along with a number of black nurses. In the landscaped yard sits Ruth Bernstein. She is 93, but argues that she 92 “and not one day more.” She was the manager of a large import company and now she did not have a lot, mainly her little dog Doska. “How could I leave?” She sighs. “I fled from the Nazis in - 1939, settled here and how many times can you re-plant an old tree”. In the next room to her is Nathan Middledorf, only 80 years old. He wears Ben -Gurion pants and is playing with the cat Pickles. His hobby is collecting trains. He was born in Bulawayo. “On that day the Africans came to the city I was in my building. I went up to the 13th and saw a huge black snake moving slowly toward the city. It took me a while to realize that it is a swarm of people coming. Then everything started to change.” I ask just how it has changed and he is pale. “It's not something I can be quoted on the paper. I want to continue to live here even after the article is published. We lost everything,” he says as an afterthought. “Government required all businesses be run by Whites and Blacks together, but they took 51 percent of the business we founded and they became the Bosses. What happened is that the factories were closed and many Africans became unemployed”. To illustrate the deterioration, the nursing home director Lanice showed me her paycheck from five years ago -a number followed by 16 zeros. “The situation was getting worse, and the government simply decided to print more money. I was a multi billionaire, but with a bill 10 zillion dollars, I could barely buy a loaf of bread,” she says. “There have been 32 different bills.” In 2012 Israel's inflation rate was 1.63 percent. A small increase leads to a flood of criticism of economic commentators and rightly so. Zimbabwe inflation rate was about 32 per cent. Sounds like a lot? 10 years later, in August 2008, he has stood at 11.2 million %. Three months later estimated inflation rate was approximately -516 Kwintilion percent. Prices of all products doubled every few hours. The last and the most painful blow struck the Jews one morning in February 2009. After their farms had been nationalized, and the blacks had become partners in most businesses, Mugabe decided to reform the currency by dollarization, an act that saved the country but almost shattered the upper class. The country dropped the worthless Zimbabwe dollar and adopted the U.S. dollar as its official currency. It was a day when the Jews of Bulawayo instantly sunk into poverty. “They just deleted the zeros. Then someone who had fantastic sum of 25 zillion dollars in the bank suddenly discovered that he had US$25. It was good for the very rich and but very bad for the poor. Those who had money invested in foreign exchange were fine but everyone else just became homeless.” There is no other way to say it - the local economy is being run by a bunch of idiots (cabbage heads). One of the richest countries in the world with natural resources is one of the poorest. Instead of allocating mining licenses and freely allowing Zimbabweans to mine the gold, diamonds and other minerals that they have in endless quantities, the government would rather find other ways to provide livelihood to its citizens: in many of the roads huge ditches are dug. These pits are open sometimes more than a year. When finished or “fixed” the workers just dig another trench down the road. Another method is to send police officers into the street to collect money. They set up a checkpoint and decide whom to give a report. Every car can get a report for having a loose license plate, screw missing on a wheel or for not “driving responsibly.” To hide the situation, the government has imposed severe restrictions on the freedom of the press in the country. Independent newspapers such as the Daily News were forced to close after a mysterious explosion that occurred on their premises. The Zimbabwe Government runs its own newspaper “The Herald” which presents extremely “filtered” news. Friends of Stanley It was not always that way. In the – 50s and 60s the Bulawayo Jewish Community was one of the strongest in the Jewish world with Women’s organizations, Jewish sports club, youth groups, summer camps and a lot and a lot of money donated to the State of Israel. Even 20 years ago it was still good here. A festive brochure published in 1994 to mark 100 years for the community and the first synagogue illustrates this. The editor opens her remarks by saying how the future generations will see how the community developed in its first 100 years. The booklet lists important dates recording community life: it turns out already by 1869 the first Jew Daniel Kish was appointed secretary to the local King Lobengula -the head of the Ndebele tribe. In 1895 - the first Jewish wedding took place of the Yakobsons and all the 92 community members came. Shortly before 1900 Isidor Henry Hirschler became the first Jewish mayor of Bulawayo. A total of eight Jews served as Mayors of Bulawayo and five Jewish politicians served in the country’s parliament in various positions. In the mid-fifties a Jewish family arrived from Zambia (formerly Northern Rhodesia) by the name of Philip and Ann Fischer. They lived on Wally Road 66 A, and their son Stanley was one of the outstanding youth in the community. It is ironic that a failed state produced one of the most respected Israeli and international economists of his time. Community elders still remember it well. The community’s Cantor Harry Shmeizer (90) boasts that he worked together with Philip Fischer in a large department store. Reuben Philosof (84) boasts that he had taught the young Stanley to play cards and to this day they are in touch. He remembers him as a “very very clever boy and he had many friends and was gracious with people. We did not know he would grow up to be such an important man. He is our hero.” Just before being appointed Governor of the Bank of Israel the Fischers invited the Philosof couple to dinner at Yale University. He asked them a personal favor: rent the family home in Bulawayo and donate the money to the community. “He particularly emphasized that the money should towards the Chevra Kadisha, to have someone to take care of the graves of his parents.” Now the house is rented to a local black family, and the proceeds of $500 a month, go to the old-age home and burial society. Today Fischer is actually one of the financiers of the community. Deep in the Jewish cemetery we found the graves of Philip and Ann Fischer. Ann (Hannah, daughter of Elijah) Mother of the outgoing Governor of the Bank of Israel, died in the New Year of 1963. On her tombstone reads: In memory of my dearest wife and our sweetest mother who left us suddenly. A few rows from there is buried her husband Philip (Passover son of Aaron Jacob Cohen) who died in 1978. Compared to the Christian side of the cemetery which is full of thorns and weeds, the Jewish cemetery is preserved and well maintained. 1200 graves are neatly arranged and all because of Hilton, who with his wife act as the Chevra Kadisha and provide much of the finances. Even the black funeral car with a Star of David is provided. The first Tombstones are from the end of the 19th century and Hilton shows us the grave of his great grandmother. “Now you understand why I'm so connected here.” Solomon is considered a local celebrity. Not only the police, the boys on the street recognize him and greet him as “Mr. Solomon.” He sends his hand into his pocket and pulls coins for them. His house is spread over a huge area with garden, palm trees and a pool. Two servants live in an adjacent house and four cars are parked in the front. In the neighborhood of his house are another 600 villas and at one time half them were owned by Jews. Today it is possible to count the Jews in the area on one hand. In the afternoon one of them comes to visit - Rami Haddad, an Israeli diamond merchant who has been coming and going since 2006, hoping to find a successful business. “This is the best country, rich in natural resources,” he says, “but there's a thin layer of rulers who eat the state and the rest are poor. There is no in-between.” Haddad is one of the only ones who benefited from the situation before dollarization. “I used to come with fifty US dollars for a week and convert them to live like a king with servants and free food. At the end of the week I still had stacks of money and bought souvenirs. That was before the money lost its value again.” He remembers how he would come to a restaurant with two bags full of five thousand billion Zimbabwe dollars, give them to the owner to be counted and began to eat his meal. The next day he took me to the gold mines he was trying to buy. There was a fruitful area which Jews were involved in and today almost none are. We leave the city in his jeep and drive to the area known as the Motopos. Soon the road becomes one lane between the trees and then difficult dirt tracks. We pass through villages on the road where there is no road and travel paths which see no civilization in sight. The blue sky of Africa covers the endless savannah Rami know clearly how to identify the gold -the vegetation becomes dense and suddenly spikes as hard as nails. Locals believe that this is G-ds way of preventing man's greed. We get to an abandoned British mine and the skeletons of trucks can be seen in the fields around. It turns out that gold is not minded in chunks from the earth but by removing rocks from the earth, crushing them and extracting a few ounces of gold for every ton. The rock is brought to a huge mechanized device and crushed with water and then the metals are separated through heat. For every gram you can get $50, half of which will go to the state. Still from as few as 10 or 20 holes you can produce 2-3 pounds of gold and make something like 60 thousand dollars at the end of the month. Not bad. Miners sleep in tents or makeshift shelters, and work long days and nights for $180 per month. They eat cornmeal bread that they burn on the bonfire, and dip in it a fish sauce called Themba. Archie, the current boss, looks like Derrick Sharp, is a worthwhile partner in these businesses. Not because of good business sense, but because of the fact that his father is close to local mines minister, ensuring that the government does not take more half of the profits. Diving into oblivion The next morning I go to the other side of Bulawayo with Ruth Feigenbaum (79), who is retired but a lady with excess energy. She takes me to see an organization she established to support families with AIDS that fill the continent. This is a network of support groups of female patients, or those who care for patients. “We convince them there is a reason to take the medical cocktail and to continue to live.” She takes me on a tour with her battered Mazda to the rural areas of Bulawayo. A few minutes’ drive from downtown the horizon is filled with corn fields and dirt roads. We stop at a structure which is one of seven branches of the organization. In the building is waiting for us a rather large black woman named Patricia Tsabalah who lives in a hut nearby and is working for the organization. Patricia had eight children and three died. I am ashamed to ask what they died from. She points out through the window at two girls who she adopted and that now help her run the organization. Ruth and Patricia plan together how they will be screening the children for a new project called “Rabbi Moshe Library”, named for Rabbi Moshe Silberhaft of South Africa. Placed along the walls are donated books for the 540 orphans who also come to learn to read and receive a hot meal. Some children have AIDS and some are the children of parents with AIDS. Patricia herself has not completed 12 years of study. Zimbabwe’s grim statistics can be confusing: For example, when talking about a third of the country's citizens as AIDS patients, this means that there are villages with nearly 100 percent levels of the illness. This is the reason that in villages we passed we found huge signs imploring residents not have sex before marriage. About one percent of the population is Albino or about one in 400 blacks. In some villages children watched us almost as lepers and did not understand what happened to our skin. As Shabbat approaches the phone starts ringing in the hope of finding a minyan. By nightfall on Friday a dozen men and three women: Five elderly from the Savyon Old Age home, six Israeli businessmen and an Israeli journalist. Prayer is conducted quickly in a heavy Ashkenazi accent. I'm staying with Eric Bloch, Stanley's Fischer’s “madrich” from the Habonim youth movement who persuaded him to immigrate to Israel. Bloch has a Doctorate in Economics and could well have been an influence on which field Fischer selected. “Stan was a very talented guy. We knew he would go a long way.” Wikipedia’s Who’s Who for Bulawayo is a list of celebrities from the city, headed by the name of Bloch and slightly below the apprentice Fischer. If on Friday night, 15 people come to pray, on the Shabbat morning there are only eight and the prayer is conducted quickly and Torah reading is out of the Chumash. No one understands the parasha that Rami reads. The “seudat shlishit” on Saturday afternoon a few elderly come to the synagogue from the old age home and eat beans pickles together. As the sun went down I was left alone in the synagogue with the couple Bernard and Rivi Tatz – both in their 90s and both suffering from alzheimers. We leave the dark street and Mr. Tatz presents himself to me for the 12th time that evening and asks what brought me to Zimbabwe. The doctor who delivered all the babies in the community, including Stanley, and was considered one of the best doctors of Bulawayo now fights an illness which destroys his once wonderful mind. Just before he gets in to his shuttle ride, he looks straight at me very clear and true, and says slowly: “The most important thing that despite everything, we have shrunk and have been bruised, we still remain unified. There is everything that a Jew could want; synagogue, kosher food and even the burial society. We will stay until the end a strong community and we will continue to hold meetings and tea parties – right until the end.” The wall in their hearts After Zimbabwe I visited the Jewish community of Johannesburg of about 70 thousand people and I found a strong and Zionist community but one living in fortified golden cages. I grew up in a settlement during the intifada with well-oiled security systems lubricated - and I never encountered with such a sense of Insecurity as in Johannesburg. The hostel where I hosted at the corner and Viljoen and Main St is surrounded by a high stone wall that hides the street and on top an electric wired fence along with razor sharp barbed wire. This security level is common here. There are signs illustrating what will be the punishment of burglars. Almost every head of a family holds a firearm in the bedroom. Each family pays about 1500 Rand a month on security – enough to fund a private army including ammunition, bulletproof vests and vehicles. There is a new fashion: iron indoor bars to protect the bedroom areas. Let them take the money but not kills us – is the thinking. Driving on the road from the airport the Jewish Agency emissary for Betar, Uri Laser, recommends me to go out with as little on me as I need to avoid being a target for robbing. He came from Israel six months previously and is not yet used to the situation. "Car doors lock automatically when turning on the engine, "he says." At night one does not stop at the red traffic lights here because it's too dangerous. " Every city in the world has areas not recommended. But in Johannesburg there are permitted areas whilst the rest is chaos and dangerous. At the Beyachad community center the building is fortified by concrete barriers against shooting. On the third floor we meet the Ayala Feldman, CEO of the SA Zionist Federation. “How do you live here?” she is asked. “We can ask the same question about Israel,” she says. “Even you face rockets and buses that explode. So we can say that you are Mashiganas. The situation here is no different from Mexico or Brazil. You set aside military budgets, we do for our personal security. " Shimon Shamila sits in an adjacent office and is head of the Jewish Agency delegation and head of "Center of Israel”. "This is a honey trap” he determines...” Without much effort or competition one can be very rich here, and because it is a third world country – one may live at very high level with a pool and servants. " So the Jews look and see that we live in a minority within the majority black rule and the government is hostile to Israel. Later that day we descend a kosher restaurant near the Jewish suburb and meet a well-manicured business woman, whose face is much younger than the other parts of her body due to the surgeon’s knife. I tell her about my fear of walking around the streets and she smiles dismissively. “We get used to it,” she says. “After a while we don’t see the fences,” she adds. Then later I hear that her husband was murdered during a robbery last year. “South African Jewish community is a warm and Zionist community, keeps Jewish tradition maintains close contact with Israel,” says Shai Felber, vice president of community relations at the Jewish Agency. “Support of South African Jews for Israel crosses geographies and religious orientation and Israel occupies a very significant part of the community’s agenda.” “About 75% of Jews have visited Israel at least once in their lives, and now Israel is the number one choice for migration for South African Jewry, and for Zionist reasons.”
A Daughter Offers Gratitude Dearest Staff of Savyon There is continual bad news coming from your side of the world, and because of this, many of my friends question me about the wisdom of our keeping my Mom at Savyon. I spend so much time explaining how well off my Mom actually is at Savyon. I tell them about the exceptional care, the delicious meals and teas, the beautiful surroundings and tell them about all the wonderful people there are at Savyon in particular, and in Bulawayo.I certainly tell all that there is no other place here that can compare with Savyon Lodge. And I make a special point of saying how happy and settled my Mom is at Savyon. I quote my Mom when she says that she is so well looked after at Savyon, and that she has such good friends there. I also remember fondly a very special and spiritual Rosh Hashana meal that we had at Savyon. So I thought that I should tell you all, I know how stressful it is for you to run Savyon Lodge, with all that you have to do, and be involved with. It is time for me to remind you how very grateful we are that our Mom is at Savyon, and to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all you, and the staff of Savyon do for all the residents. I will be in touch soon. Fondest love to you all. The health and well-being of the residents is of paramount importance – they are under the care of a trained nursing sister, who distributes their medication during her daily rounds. She is on call 24 hours a day, should the need arise. Zimbabwe as a whole suffers from very erratic power supplies and experiences daily outages of up to 12 hours. Savyon Lodge is extremely fortunate to have been donated a very large and powerful generator by the Hon. Abe Abrahamson. This ensures that the residents are never inconvenienced by a lack of electricity and the home is able to run efficiently at all times.