A small child falls and is immediately enveloped in a hug to make the boo-boo go away. An adult? We expect an adult to manage the ups and downs of life his own. Usually he can. But there are times when even the adult needs that hug and a shoulder to cry on.
Illness is like an earthquake for the family. From the moment of the diagnosis, Ezer Mizion embraces the family, encircling them in love and caring, assuring them that we are here for them at all hours of the day and night.
For more than a year, Eitan* has been undergoing treatments until that black day when he was told that the treatment was not having an effect and that he’d need to undergo a leg amputation. The news hit him like a ton of bricks. The one who stood at the side of Eitan and his family and escorted them through these difficult moments was Meir of Ezer Mizion Social Services department. “Due to corona, no one was allowed to visit him,” he relates. “They made an exception for Ezer Mizion staff. During the entire rehab process with the prosthesis, I was able to accompany him, helping him with the physiotherapy, passing the time with him, and raising his spirits.”
As soon as it was possible, between lockdowns, I took him for a two-day trip to the North: an overnight in a vacation unit, a dip in the Kinneret, and a swim in a spring, with guitars, coffee and songs, precisely as he’d dreamed. He told me that this trip was the light at the end of the tunnel for the difficult period he was going through.
Ayelet, another Ezer Mizion social worker, shares a heartwarming story. It was after she’d asked one of the children what he likes. His answer was: “I like meat, especially barbecued.” But the family finances were strained. “I contacted Yossie. a professional chef whose son has recovered from leukemia. Yossie happily rallied to the cause. We went to the boy’s house with all the ingredients and, together with Yossie and his family, prepared a delightful gourmet glatt kosher barbecue. It turned into one big party. What was especially powerful was that the chef was coming from the place of someone who had been there and was able to empower the boy and his family, greatly encouraging them.
A young woman fled Iran wither two daughters. It was not long before her elderly parents also arrived in Israel. They needed help in so many different areas. ‘Our daughter will help us,’ they said to themselves. Of course, she would but she was currently engaged in a battle with cancer. So distraught at her parents’ plight, she came to the only address she knew: Ezer Mizion. That is how we became the surrogate daughter helping out until the parents were settled.
We will never let these families go through this nightmare on their own! Baruch Hashem (thank G-d), we are able to be there for them, thanks to Ezer Mizion’s strength and resources which are all due to you, our generous partners in the challenge of holding the hands of those so vulnerable as they stumble through life’s crises.