The two go hand in hand. Chemotherapy and emotional therapy. A patient’s spirits become a powerful partner in the battle against illness. While Ezer Mizion is not able to provide chemotherapy, we search every nook and cranny for ways to bring joy to the patient and his family. The creativity of the professional staff supported by thousands of dedicated volunteers are in the business of manufacturing smiles on the faces of those who haven’t smiled in days.
How do you bring a grin to the face of someone whose world has turned into a nightmare of pain and misery, of fear and worry? There are many ways. Some therapeutically bring the patient into a world in which he can freely express his feelings like the famed Art Workshop whose work is displayed annually to the public or the ever-popular Lego Workshop run by Maor Cohen who knows what fear is, having grown up under the shadow of a seriously ill father.
Others take him to a ‘fun place’, a world without cancer, a respite from the unrelenting pressure of terror. Caricaturist Oriel Peled visits Ezer Mizion’s Oranit, A Home for Families with Cancer, every week. With his delightfully enchanting cartoons, he provides a reprieve from the traumatic reality that makes up their day. “Let’s draw a world without cancer,” he says to the group.
Volunteers are assigned to children like Harel who was treated to a walk in the park to enjoy the balmy weather. The girls made a big to-do over Harel’s fancy slippers, creating an ear-to-ear grin to replace the recent tears. And, of course, there are birthday parties. With fun, fun, fun! There’s Daniel being bounced high on a chair by four teenagers singing Happy Birthday to him. Do you hear his shrieks of joy?
Don’t think fun is only for kids. The whole family joins in the Pizza Workshops producing culinary masterpieces where olives and oregano replace those frightening IV poles. Mommies receive special treatment on Spa Day when their horrific terror is soothed by the ultimate in pampering by Idit, Chana, Liat, Irit, Inbal, Rotem, Angliah, Maya, our devoted ‘spa ladies’.
In the words of so many who have, Boruch Hashem, reached the other side: Ezer Mizion, we never could have made it through our nightmare without you!
Ezer Mizion provides services to over 660,000 of Israel’s population annually in addition to its Bone Marrow Registry which saves the lives of Jewish cancer patients the world over.