Ezer mizion is the greatest place!!
i was a volunteer in the summer day camp for Children with special needs, and it was amazing to see how much they help everyone and any one that needs!!
The day I made my way through the frantic atmosphere of the recruitment base, waiting for my new green IDF uniform, I never thought that with a little pinch of a needle at the Ezer Mizion bone marrow sample testing booth, I could save a human life. I had almost forgotten all about the sample I gave. When they called to tell me that I was a match, I cried with joy and I cry every time I relive the dramatic moment
I have been living in Israel for 3 years. I am still on all the 'Old Country' email lists and look on longingly about all the Golf Outings that are advertised at various times during the year.
Whenever I participated in the day's events, I always enjoyed the entire atmosphere camaraderie's, food, and of course the golf. If a trip stateside coincided with one of the various outings I would have attended, I would try to work my hectic schedule into the outing, but - more often than not - it was not possible.
Living in Beit Shemesh, having a day job and not being an ardent 'twice a week' golfer, my golf skills waned and my rounds became few and far between. Which has been a shame because the year I made Aliyah, the Caesarea Golf Course reopened its beautiful Pete Dye designed championship course. I was able to play every few months but not more.
Shortly after arriving to Israel, friends and family started turning to us for advice on where to go and what to do as they found themselves on the JFK-Ben Gurion express once again. They are always looking for the 'out of the way', 'off the grid', 'never did that before', thing in Israel. Invariably the suggestion was met with 'been there, done that'.
Until one year when my friend Simmie visited from West Hempstead. He was investigating different yeshivot his high school senior was interested in attending the following year. He also knew there were quite a few others that were traveling to Israel the same Thanksgiving weekend.
After an exhaustive yeshivah search he found himself with an afternoon free. Having done practically everything else in Israel, he wanted to play golf. A few phone calls later we had two foursomes and a tee time at the Caesarea course. We followed up the round at a restaurant in the Herzalia marina and one of the participants commented on what an absolutely great and different day this was.
This began the wheels turning in our heads. If; with a few quick phone calls, we can organize a great golf day, why not make this into an annual event and raise money for a worthwhile cause?
Playing golf, eating food, having fun and all done in the name of raising money - we right away came up with a worthy organization: Ezer Mizion.
Our relationship with Ezer Mizion began six years ago. Simmie introduced me to the organization and on one of our many trips we had packed some gift bags or brought some clothes and we were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to tour their facility and deliver the goods to a welcoming recipient.
We discovered that Ezer Mizion has its hand in so many areas. It may be a family whose mother is struggling with cancer and unable to cope or a frail octogenarian desperate to maintain his independence or perhaps a special child frustrated by failure.
The prime division is its International Jewish Bone Marrow Registry. Our tour of the place was where we learned about the registry.
They had just initiated the testing of every IDF recruit and their numbers of specimens in the bank was growing along with their costs. They estimated if the number of people in the bank was 1,000,000 they would have a 97-99% certainty of being able to provide a match for any Jewish person that would, G-d forbid, need it. Clearly this was a suitable match for our fundraising efforts. Saving one soul is akin to saving the world. Currently they are the fourth largest registry in the world behind the USA, Germany and Brazil. They are the largest Jewish registry.
Irv Hackel played an important role in helping us arrange for a speaker to come and give us words of inspiration while raising money for Ezer Mizion. Other events and circumstances led us to the logical next step, raising money for Ezer Mizion via a golf outing in Israel. As far as I know there are no other ones like it. With Simmie spearheading the US efforts and my being in Israel and arranging the logistics, we inaugurated the Annual Turkey Shoot Golf Outing in Support of Ezer Mizion's Bone Marrow Registry.
This was not as simple as making a few phone calls, but everyone we spoke with was enthusiastic and eager to help. The golf course was happy to help us with the planning. Holy Bagel gladly jumped aboard as a sponsor and provided breakfast and lunch. After all said and done we had 24 golfers, had an incredible amount of fun and raised a lot of money.
Afterwards there was a unanimous agreement to make this an annual event. Many people who heard about it after the fact pledged to play the following year.
There are some things that you hear a lot about, but do not really grasp until you encounter them in real life. Only then do you suddenly truly understand all that you heard or saw on the subject, and realize that - until now - you really had no idea what it was all about.
That's what happened to me recently when, for various medical reasons, I had to travel from my home to the hospital, back and forth, repeatedly. When I attempted to use public transportation, I learned that I would have to take three different buses in order to reach my destination. My health situation could not tolerate all that time on buses. Taxis were way out of my budget. I was at a loss of what to do. Then suddenly, the "good angels" I had heard so much about appeared out of nowhere and opened my eyes.
A friend referred me to Ezer Mizion's Transport Division. It was there that I discovered an entire world of busy activity, humming quietly underground - or more accurately - above the ground, on the asphalt roads. I revealed an entire network of volunteers, regulars and occasional, at set hours and odd timers, with big vehicles and little ones. Among them were very busy, rushed people, who are anything but bored. Nevertheless, they were all there on call, like soldiers at a drill, quick to respond to every request from Ezer Mizion's coordinator to come help another Jew.
I don't have to describe the distress of patients and their families, some of whom unfortunately suffer for long periods of poor health. Much of that time, they spend on the roads, between home and the hospital. The other family members, and especially young children, get caught in the middle, desperate for a bit more attention and less isolation and distance from their harried parents.
The endless travel time turns from an inconvenience into a nightmare, as the lengthy trips steal away big chunks of time from the children, and the long hours spent outside the home come at the youngsters' expense.
You cannot possibly understand the tremendous kindness in the mitzvah of facilitating speedy, comfortable transport of patients and their escorts, until you go through it yourself. We hope that no one should have to go through the experience and that everyone's loved ones will stay well and healthy, and that by just hearing about it, people will come to a true understanding of how significant volunteer driving really is!
Ezer Mizion's volunteer transport network is based on the caring and cooperation of hundreds of drivers who devote time and patience, driving their own cars and paying for the gas, to pick up patients and their companions and get them to their destination.
At this opportunity, I suggest that drivers devote some thought to this important topic. Whoever feels he can find the time to help out in this important chesed should speak to one of the organizations he is familiar with and offer his assistance to drive patients and their family members. In this way, more Jews can be helped to get through their difficult times with relative ease and comfort and to gain valuable time for the benefit of the patients and their children.
May all Jewish patients experience full recovery and render all these chesed avenues unnecessary!
I volunteer - usually on a weekly basis - to sit by the bedside of a patient in one of Jerusalem's hospitals.
There are other volunteers from Ezer Mizion who drive me there and back.
While in the hospital, there is an Ezer Mizion volunteer giving out tasty meals (or snacks, depending on the time of day/night). I have seen how these gifts of food have really made a difference in the lives of the family of the patients.
Some people are sitting there day and night and can't leave to try to find a normal meal. Ezer Mizion comes along (with a smile too) and provides them nourishment to continue the vigil by their bedsides.
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Dear all the angels involved in this holy work!
As the mother of a counselor who participated in Ezer Mizion's summer camp in Petach Tikvah, I wanted to express to you my tremendous appreciation for allowing my daughter the privilege to be with you, give of herself, and discover her hidden strengths.
Words cannot capture the tremendous, elevating experience that she went through and is still drawing from until today – in addition to the fact that the camp opened her eyes to a different world, a world where every single person is of no less value than herself.
I feel that these days contributed a great deal to deepening her inner world and developing her character. She can hardly wait for the joint weekends for the children and counselors!
My blessings for your continued wonderful work~