Itzhak Perlman has shared some of the bounty of winning a $1 million Genesis Prize with the Yiddish Book Center, donating $50,000 to the center.
The Genesis Prize Foundation awards the prize to an individual who has “attained excellence and international renown in their chosen professional fields, and who inspire others through their engagement and dedication to the Jewish community and/or the State of Israel,” according to a press release.
Perlman is using the award to support programs in the fields of music and culture and to projects that promote the inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of society, according to the release.
A portion of the gift to the center will be used for the Steiner Summer Yiddish Center, an intensive Yiddish language and culture program for college and graduate students.
The remainder will go to the Wexler Oral History Project, a growing collection of in-depth interviews with people of all ages and backgrounds whose stories offer a rich and complex chronicle of Jewish identity, according the book center’s press release.
“Mr. Perlman has been a friend of the Yiddish Book Center for many years,” said Aaron Lansky, the organization’s founder and president.
“He served as honorary campaign chairperson when we built our first building in 1997. Now, through this latest gift, he is helping to bring Yiddish learning to students at the Center and beyond our walls,” Lanky said in the statement.