We both began our Ramah journey in 1961. I was a camper from 1961 to 1965 and Arona was in Rishonim in 1961 when her mother, Esther Hankin, was a Hebrew teacher. Arona returned again after 1961 as a babysitter and junior counselor in 1968. Later our son, Brian, was a camper for several years.

In 2004, Arona and I attended a reunion weekend at camp and that’s when we “returned” to Ramah and have been involved every year since then. We have added to our love for Ramah by volunteering our expertise. I volunteered through architectural services to design numerous camp buildings including the Chadar Ochel, staff housing, Nivonim campus, Tikvah vocational housing, the new arts center and outdoor performance stage, the Tikvah moadon, Ramah’s Chicago business office and improvements to several other buildings in Conover and at Ramah Day Camp in Wheeling, Illinois. Arona assisted by volunteering with the Atzmayim vocational program.

Just as Ramah has been a meaningful part of our past and present, we have made Ramah part of our estate planning so that the future of Jewish camping is a certainty.

George Sarfatty

Sarfatty 2.
George in Cabin 1 in 1961 (Back row – third from left).