For Every Pushke, a Story

A Blue Box in Mexico that began its journey in Germany, 1935.

New! Stories of the Blue Box

The first of a series from KKL-JNF in Latin America

All about the Blue Box

Raquel Gitlin de Marcovich and Susana Karchner tell the story about their special treasure: a KKL-JNF Blue Box made in 1935 in Germany, a gift to them from their uncle, Mr. Abraham Margules, who served as honorary chairman of KKL-JNF.

Raquel Gitlin de Marcovich and Susana Karchner with their unique Blue Box. Photo: Enlace Judío

On February 10th, Enlace Judío had a conversation with Raquel Gitlin de Marcovich and Susana Karchner, volunteers from the Keren Kayemet Leisrael (KKL) in Mexico.

The pushkes, or KKL-JNF collection boxes, have existed for many years in almost every jewish home and educational institution in Israel and around the world. The State of Israel was built on these blue boxes. Their existence not only enabled the collection of money from hundreds of thousands of Jews  to buy land in Eretz Israel, but it also was a major educational item to convey the strong link of the People of Israel to its land.

Pushkes have existed in all sizes and colors, being blue the classic model. A big collection of these can be seen at the KKL México offices.

For Raquel and Susana, the little box they showed us is a real treasure: it was made in Germany in 1935 and their uncle, Mr. Abraham Margules, who served as honorary chairman of KKL-JNF, gave it to them as a gift. She was surprised by the fact that their uncle, who had already sons and nephews, decided to give it precisely to her.

“This Pushke is very special: it has carved a map in the back, with the territory of Israel that, thanks to the pushkes, was acquired by KKL-JNF”, she says. She also states passionately that “nobody gave gifts to Eretz Israel”.

She considers herself a “zionist from my birth” since her family has always participated as volunteers in favor of the Jewish State.

In turn, Ms. Susana Karchner says that, at the Tarbut School, the pushke was very important because every Friday, children would give a flower, candies and money for KKL-JNF, and that this tradition was passed on from generation to generation.

Finally, they stated their wish that young people will always love the State of Israel “because that reaffirms them as human beings and good Jews”.

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