by: Leslie Bunder - Last updated: 2008-03-01
A London-based property millionaire is enabling Jewish students around the world to gain valuable educational services through videoconferencing.
David Gradel, who runs UK Estates, has provided the funding to enable ORT to develop a videoconferencing network across 26 locations in 11 countries where pupils and educators can interact with each other.
"I want to reinforce to Jewish communities around the world that they are not alone they are part of something bigger," he said. Gradel also pledged an additional $75,000 to pay for half the running costs over the next four years.
The technology allows students and teachers to quickly forget the distance between them so that they feel like theyre in the same room," said Dr Vlad Lerner, head of World ORTs education and technology department. "The only way that we could develop closer bonds between the participants would be to physically bring them together, but that is prohibitively expensive."