CT’s Philip Krawitz honoured by K-Hayesod
Krawitz was one of four recipients to be recognised at Keren Hayesod’s 2015 Annual World Conference. The other three distinguished community leaders and philanthropists hailed from Hong Kong, Brazil and Switzerland respectively.
In his acceptance speech Krawitz told the audience, which included Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, how, as a boy, his father had shown him photographs of refugee ships passing through Cape Town harbour, filled with Jews who were unable to find sanctuary in any port, in any country.
RIGHT: Philip and Michele Krawitz
“That reality made me realise that, whether or not Israel requires the financial support of Diaspora Jews, we as Diaspora Jews have a need to support the only country in the world that will take us in, regardless of wealth, health, age, financial status, skin colour or level of Jewish observance.”
Krawitz told Jewish Report that he wasn’t quite sure what prompted his recognition at this particular juncture but thought it was because he spearheaded the Cape Town Jewish community’s fundraising efforts during Operation Protective Edge last year when Cape Town raised the most amount of funds per capita in the world for Israel.
Krawitz, who has grown outdoor clothing retailer Cape Union Mart from a one-store operation to one of South Africa’s largest family-owned companies, is moving to a more non-executive role so he can focus his energies on philanthropy.
He is chairman of the board of the United Jewish Campaign, which raises funds for both local and Israeli causes; he is a trustee of the South African Holocaust and Genocide Foundation as well as the CSO and is a protector of the Trust of Ikamva Labantu. He has also won the SA Jewish Report’s Lifetime Achiever Award.
Krawitz was thrilled to have his wife Michele as well as two of of his daughters at the ceremony with him. One of his daughters lives in Israel.
Former SA winners include: Stanley Seeff, Russel Gaddin, Robert Kaplan, Mervyn Horwitz and Geoffrey Herman
Philip receiving his award