A worshipper at the Western Wall found an envelope with 507 open checks worth about half a billion dollars.
There was a time when Dora Apsan Sorell could have really used the $3,043 she received from the German government last summer. The check was meant to compensate Sorell for her slave labor during the Holocaust.
But the 83-year-old Auschwitz survivor and retired doctor who lives in Berkeley gave the money away as soon as it arrived. She donated it to the American Jewish World Service (AJWS), which is among a handful of Jewish organizations trying to aid desperate refugees from the Darfur region of western Sudan.
A foundation to aid needy Holocaust survivors in California, funded through a $4.2-million check from three Dutch insurance companies, was formally established last week by state officials, Jewish organizations and survivors.