Visionaries are Areyvut honorees

Visionaries are Areyvut honorees

Lillian Pravda, left, Jay Feinberg
Lillian Pravda, left, Jay Feinberg

Areyvut holds its annual breakfast, this year honoring Lillian Pravda with a Young Leadership award and Jay Feinberg with a Community Leadership award, at Congregation Bnai Yeshurun in Teaneck on Sunday, May 15. The breakfast is from 9:30 to 11 a.m.; the presentation is at 10:30.

Lillian Pravda, 16, is the founder and CEO (chief eyesight optimist) of Vision for and from Children, a U.S.-based global 501(c)(3) dedicated to providing eye surgeries and vision services to children who lack access to such care. So far, she has helped 26,210 children receive the gift of sight in the United States and developing regions. Many news outlets, including ABC, CBS, Fox Business, Bloomberg TV, Crain’s Under 20, and the Wall Street Journal have profiled her.

Daniel Rothner, Areyvut’s founder and director, said “Lillian has inspired participants in Areyvut’s teen philanthropy program and at a b’nei mitzvah chessed fair.”

Jay Feinberg, a 20-year transplant survivor, is the Gift of Life’s founder and chief executive officer. After he was diagnosed with leukemia in 1991, he searched for a matching donor, organizing 250 drives and testing 60,000 donors. His match was found in the last donor tested in the last drive.

Under Mr. Feinberg’s leadership, Gift of Life has become one of the world’s most effective volunteer donor registries. He has received many honors including the Charles Bronfman Prize, the National Marrow Donor’s Allison Atlas award, and Hadassah International’s Citizen of the World award.

Mr. Rothner, who has known Mr. Feinberg since 1995, said, “Jay has been a model and inspiration. So many people have friends and relatives or know of others whose lives have been saved by Jay and Gift of Life.”

Areyvut’s mission is to infuse the lives of Jewish children and teenagers with the core values of chessed, tzedakah, and tikkun olam. The organization creates programs to make these values real and meaningful in day and congregational schools, synagogues, and community centers, and for families.

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