Every May, Canada celebrates Jewish Heritage Month - an opportunity to learn about Jewish heritage and the community’s significant contributions to Canada.
In recognition of this month, the CRRF has partnered with the team at Ontario Jewish Archives, as well as with David S. Koffman, the J.Richard Shiff Chair for the Study of Canadian Jewry at York University’s Koschitzky Centre for Jewish Studies to share the stories of Jewish Canadian trailblazers and their milestones.
We’re pleased to share two exclusively-produced videos that tell the story of fascinating, little-known stories of Canadian Jewish history.
We invite you to watch the stories of boxing champion Sammy Luftspring as well as pioneers in Canadian Jewish medicine who have helped shape our collective history.
Sammy Lufstpring was a Canadian boxer, referee, and member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. A practising and proud Jew, Luftspring fought with a Star of David on his shorts throughout his career. In 1936, he was selected to represent Canada at the Berlin Olympics, but Sammy boycotted the games given the situation of Nazi Germany at the time.
This video recounts the story of his life, and how he became the source of pride for the Jewish community.
There was a time when antisemitism was so rampant in Canada that aspiring doctors faced anti-Jewish quotas at medical schools, hospitals refused residencies to Jewish physicians, and doctors and nurses went on strike in opposition to working alongside Jews.
This video is a tribute to the Canadian Jewish doctors who persevered to break the glass ceilings and made incredible contributions to the Canadian medical care we all enjoy today.