Arabs, Jews and Christians to celebrate ”Chanukah” with Arcadi Gaydamak
Russian-born tycoon Arcadi Gaydamak is planning a major charity event in Tel Aviv aimed at bringing together Jews and Arabs. The main goal of this event is to raise funds for high risk children, while all proceeds from the event will be donated to the Variety Children's Charity.
According to press reports, Gaydamak will host the "Chanukah" party on December 21 with a diverse group of guests including representatives from the Arab, Bedouin and Druze communities and World War veterans, in addition to Israeli youth, dignitaries and celebrities. Senior politicians and businesspersons were also invited to the event. All in all, some 1,000 people are to be invited by Gaydamak, reported Ynet.
“A cooperative event such as the one financed by Gaydamak is more than welcome at a time like this,” said one local invitee who preferred not to be mentioned by name.
“Bridging cultural and economic gaps is a step most people in Gaydamak’s position neglect. Hopefully, people will learn form this initiative as well,” he added.
Meir Lau, former chief Rabbi of Israel, will be responsible for the religious ceremony to be held during the event, which will include the lighting of the traditional “menorah” for the Chanukah celebrations. Jelly donuts, a traditional pastry served during the eight day-long Jewish holiday, will also be enjoyed by the partygoers.
However, the major highlight of the event will be Spanish singer Enrique Iglesias and his Russian partner Anna Kournikova, a former tennis player. Enrique, who will perform for the first time in Israel, is son of famous Spanish star, Julio Iglesias.
This is not the first time Gaydamak has been involved in such activities. In the past, he generously helped poor sectors in Israeli society. Gaydamak, for instance, stood behind the initiative to evacuate residents from northern Israel during the recent war with Hizbullah. Several weeks ago, he financed the mass vacation of residents of Sderot, the southern Israeli town which was bombed daily by Gaza rockets before the truce was declared.
In addition, Gaydamak has called for boosting cooperation between Israelis and Arabs. Within this framework, Gaydamak has also helped finance an Israeli-Arab football team, amongst other regional philanthropic projects.