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Datnow credits his award to a community that cares

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Chevrah Kadisha Chairperson Colin Datnow received his Absa Jewish Achiever Award for service exactly 130 years after the idea for the Chev was born.
by JORDAN MOSHE | Sep 06, 2018

It all started, he said in his acceptance speech, when a group of concerned Jewish men met on 2 September 1888 in a bar on Market Street, Johannesburg, to form an organisation that would secure the welfare of their community.

Datnow did not stress the role he had played, but that of the community itself. “We have a community that has stood by us for 130 years,” he said. “The Johannesburg Jewish community is one of the most unique communities in the world, and the achievements of the Chev are a clear testament to this.”

The culture of leadership which our community possesses is one which seeks to find the vulnerable amongst us and give them comfort when they need it most. Marked by its defining characteristics of courage, partnership, strength, and care, this community, Datnow said, it was one which would do anything for anyone, no matter the circumstances.

“Thanks to a community which keeps the Chev, at its heart, an incredible professional management team, and a board of governors unlike any other, we have seen 130 years of constant building,” he said. Asking for a spotlight to be shone on his team, Datnow sought to identify and pay tribute to every person with whom he said he shared the award.

“I can assure you all that the faith you place in these people is well founded,” he said. “Whatever needs to be done to sustain our community is their priority, and you should know that you always have a team of great people at the helm.

“Thanks to my family, and to our community. Thanks to Hashem. The fact that we have built something sustainable is nothing short of a miracle.”

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