Hillel President Wayne L. Firestone addresses students at the opening of Hillel Cordoba in Argentina.
Hillel opened its third foundation in Argentina today in Cordoba, the second-largest city in the country. The Hillel center, located in the Nueva Cordoba neighborhood, will serve approximately 2,000 Jewish students attending six major universities. An estimated 10,000 Jews live in Cordoba.
Representatives from Hillel met with the governor of the Cordoba province, Jose Manuel de la Sota. He praised the creation of Hillel and spoke of the importance of the Jewish community in Cordoba.
Nearly 100 people from throughout South America attended the opening, including Hillel International Board of Governors member Eduardo Elsztain, the chair of Hillel Uruguay Sergio Zimet and numerous friends of Hillel Argentina. From the U.S., Hillel President Wayne L. Firestone, Hillel in Latin America Chair Fred Margulies, and Director of Hillel's International Division Aaron Goldberg attended the opening. Also attending were representatives from Hillel's partner in South America, the Jewish Agency for Israel. Staff from Taglit-birthright israel, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and Chabad were also in attendance.
Hillel Cordoba will kick off its programming with seminars on Jewish leadership training for young professionals and with tzedek programming, such as working with disadvantaged youth and the elderly. Yanina Brontvain will coordinate local Hillel activities. Martin Teicher, a local businessman, has spearheaded the creation of Hillel Cordoba. Gaby Trajtenberg, the director of Hillel Argentina, coordinated the efforts of local students and adult leaders, and to position Hillel as an agent of social change throughout Argentina.
Hillel Cordoba is the third Hillel in Argentina and the fifth in South America.