Holocaust survivors' dolls brought back to life

Doll for Life Project recreated dolls lost when Holocaust survivors were taken to Nazi camps as children.

Yoni Kempinski ,

Holocaust survivor reunited with her doll
Holocaust survivor reunited with her doll
Yoni Kempinski

Three Holocaust survivors were reunited with the dolls they had lost during the Second World War.

The dolls were recreated by the Doll for Life project of the Marpe Lechaim organization, which makes dolls for children who are ill.

Lihi Lapid, the wife of Yesh Atid party chairman Yair Lapid and head of Marpe Lechaim, told Arutz Sheva that "someone had the idea to take Holocaust survivors and ask them to paint dolls. Two of them painted their dolls, the dolls that they had when they were little girls and were taken to the camps, and one of them drew a doll that she thinks [looks like] her when she was young. And the woman who makes the dolls made dolls exactly like they wanted to do it, like they thought about it, like it was in their imagination."

"Taking those women who went through so much when they were kids, and giving them back a moment from their childhood, to give them the doll that they used to have before everything was taken away from them: everything, their family, their dreams, the lives of the people that they loved, to give them back a small sense of childhood," she said.

As part of the project, Holocaust survivor Ruth Bauman and Leah Meir painted dolls they remembered from their childhood, while survivor Miriam Vladowski painted herself as she remembers.

They described the dolls down to the smallest details, from the color of the dolls' eyes, the type of leather used in the shoes, and the feel of the fabric of the dresses.

Yesterday, at the group's weekly meeting at the Kfar Saba Senior Citizens' Club, the team gave the dolls to Holocaust survivors.

Ruth Bauman's eyes were flooded with tears when she accepted the doll. She sat with the doll and murmured, "My Layla, Layla."

There was not a single dry eye in the room as Bauman, who had been through so much, reclaimed a piece of her lost childhood.



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