ESRA Magazine
ESRAmagazine categories

Fonda was born in Pietersburg, South Africa. After finishing school, she studied ballet at the University of Cape Town Ballet School. During this period, she worked as a fashion model for leading fashion houses. Fondas husband, Mark Dubb, from Port Elizabeth, was an architect, volunteered to "Nachal" in 1956 and completed his Israeli Army training as a paratrooper.

Fonda and Mark made Aliyah to Israel in March, 1988. They  have 3 children, all in Israel. After attending the Hebrew Ulpan in Raanana for one month, Fonda was asked to take over a ballet studio for 6 months. Not having the language, it was a nightmare, not being able to discipline and communicate with the children and the parents.

A friend had heard about her love of catering and asked her to do a small function for 50 people in Israel. It was a success, and the next day she was approached to do a function for 250 people. That was how Fonda started catering professionally. In 1989, she opened "Fonda Catering", subsequently working for 15 years as a caterer for the South African Embassy. In addition, she did general catering: bar mitzvahs, weddings, etc.

Her husband Mark, an architect, as well as right-hand man in the catering business, died very suddenly in 1999, at the age of 65. Fonda decided to close her business and moved to Eilat 8 years ago. In Eilat, Fonda started doing voluntary work for WIZO – giving demonstrations and organizing group birthday parties, escorting the blind club on their "tyulim" and helping them whenever needed. She teaches English to children of Ethiopian olim through the medium of cooking, and visits the sick at a convalescent center. One of her projects is selling Ethiopian craftwork for ESRA. She also writes  articles for ESRA and TelFed Magazines.

Looking back on her busy life – only part of which is written here – Fonda feels very grateful for the gifts and blessings received.

Fonda received numerous awards from ESRA, including:

  • In 2002 for founding the Widows/Widowers group
  • In 2004 for being an English tutor
  • In 2018 for all her volunteering in ESRA over 30 years – catering for numerous ESRA events; for setting up ESRA in Eilat when she moved to live there and ensuring that it be active and for selling ESRA Ethiopian embroidered goods on the Eilat beachfront.

In 2012 Fonda received the prestigious" Woman of the Year" Award from the Mayor Meir Itzhak Ha'Levi for her volunteering in Eilat.

How my cooking courses helped domestic workers in South Afri...
Fonda Dubb, walking the first day after her hip replacement with her physiotherapist, at Tel Hashomer Hospital, Nov 8, 2019

According to the organization StandWithUs, 35 percent of all...
Congratulations on organizing and hosting this special event...

I wanted to tell you, Merle, how very much I enjoyed reading...
Johaar Mosaval, principal dancer with the Royal Ballet, with the Gelvandale Toynbee Ballet School in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

First Debutantes Ball for colored girls under the Mayor of Port Elizabeth’s patronage

Many Jews in South Africa opposed the apartheid regime. My c...
 Curiosity, not Zionism, brought Colin Porter to Israel...