Dozens of families in Caesarea hosted 35 handicapped children and the medical staff accompanying them – a total of 105 doctors and nurses – for a full Shabbat in their homes.
The children, all with severe medical handicaps and some confined to wheelchairs or completely bedridden, are cared for throughout the year on a voluntary basis by the Akim organization. This was an opportunity for them to enjoy a special vacation Shabbat, rich with activity and festivities.
How did they get there? Ezer Mizion was happy to cooperate and provide transportation via its professionally outfitted ambulances which transport the mobility-challenged to and from clinics and therapy sessions on a daily basis.
The children ate the Friday night Shabbat meal in the homes of their host families. For the daytime meal, a festive banquet was held for more than 200 people: the children, the medical escorts, and the hosts. At the closing of Shabbat, a grand event was held, including dancing and song, where joy mingled with feelings of sadness at the imminent parting.
What an amazing sight it was to see a fleet of eight fully equipped Ezer Mizion ambulances with additional minibuses and coach buses lining up so that children whose daily lives are colored in sadness can enjoy the smiles that accompany the camaraderie of this most special Shabbat.
If not for the magnificent cooperation and collaboration between the two organizations, and the immense dedication of the volunteers, these severely handicapped children could never have been able to get to and from their destination, and the Shabbat would not have become a reality.