|Avraham Aharon Alperovich|
During those days, Tzeirey Zion, an organization of Zionist youths was
established in town as well as an organization by the name of Cherut and Tchia.
Every night, boys and girls from the school would meet and coordinate games and
political discussions. As time passed we started visiting the surrounding
towns. We would meet with the youths of Vileyka, which was nearby, and we even
exchanged letters with the center in Vilna. At the head of the youth movement
there were leaders, and amongst them there were teachers from the Hebrew school
in town, and they would make speeches about Hebrew literature, the history of
Zionism and the history of the Jewish nation. We would have parties that aimed
to collect funds for Keren Keyemt and Keren Hayesod (funds for Eretz Israel).
We would regularly make the rounds of all the homes in town, trying to get
donations for the miscellaneous Hebrew national foundations. We would sell
pictures of the Zionist leaders, and once in a while we would put on plays in
which we participated as amateur actors. In time we succeeded in getting most
of the youths in the area to partake in our activities.
|Ephraim Lieb Kramer|
In the year 1922, the branch of Ha'chalutz was established in Kurenets. We communicated with the center and followed their instructions from the very start. I remember that year a few leaders from the center of the Ha'chalutz in Warsaw came to Kurenets. Amongst them were Y. Bankover and A. Dobkin. They gathered us and told us about our mission for the future. We all acknowledged the missions that they suggested to us, which would be concluded by immigration to the land of Israel. At the very beginning there were only a few members in Ha'chalutz, but at the end of the year, the branch in Kurenets became a very respected branch and was renowned in the entire region of Vilna.
We chose members to head the organization, and at the top of the organization (the head of the branch) we elected Ephraim Leib Kramer. Other promotions were given to other members of the organization, I amongst them. Each evening we would meet and discuss issues such as how to enlarge the organization, how to teach and promote better understanding of the Zionist pioneer movements among the youths. We started organizing the Ha'chalutz not only in our town but also throughout the whole region. We would go to all the neighboring towns and in time we were successful and managed to involve other youths who were committed to founding branches in other shtetls.
Ephraim Leib gave a lot of time and energy to these activities. Every Saturday,
we would meet halfway between Kurenets and Vileyka with the youths in the area.
There we would spend hours singing and strolling together. During that time we
started organizing Hachsharah (training to live in an agricultural community in
Israel), founding farming communities as educational/training places in which
to study agriculture in different parts od Poland. We sent some members of our
branch to such communities. I was among the first to live there. I went to an
agricultural community by the name of Trumpeldoria near Vilna (in Lobodov?).
There we lived and worked in an agricultural community. We learned how to clear
and plow fields, plant seed, and milk cows.
|Hachalutz in Lebodove|
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