In the late 70s, Erma Blumenfeld’s late husband, Allan, was introduced to Weizmann Canada by a good friend. Passionate about Israeli causes, he was quick to get involved, and Allan soon became President of the Vancouver Chapter.
When Weizmann Canada supporters across the country rallied together for the Solar Tower project, the Blumenfelds worked to promote the cause in Western Canada. Erma and Allan were on campus for its dedication ceremony, and Erma still recalls the passion that was present. “There was this overwhelming feeling of pride for Canadian supporters that we were doing something tremendous for humanity”.
Over the next two decades, Erma and Allan lost touch with Weizmann, as they moved around Canada and Israel, built their business and raised their family.
Twenty years later, Erma, now living in Toronto, found herself close to the Institute while visiting Israel with a friend. She reached out and a tour was arranged, during which she came upon the ‘Allan and Erma Blumenfeld Garden’. This was the result of a gift the two of them had made together, and seeing it flourishing so many years later was an incredibly moving moment for her. She knew Allan would have been proud to see that his association with the Weizmann Institute continued to this day.
Returning from her visit, Erma was inspired to re-engage with Weizmann Canada and she established a student scholarship in Alzheimer’s research. “Student researchers are dreamers, and without financing, their dreams will collapse.”
Erma firmly believes that the Weizmann Institute is one of the world’s greatest research institutions and she recognizes the importance that the individual plays in ensuring its success. “The Weizmann Institute and scientific research can’t survive without supporters. Consequently, without us, there is no benefit for all of humanity.”