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Summary of last Month’s Events
Who’s Counting … Over the past month, 17 coordinators have sent 363 volunteers, including 23 new volunteers, on 1,010 trips taking 469 patients from different border crossings to hospital and back again.
A letter of thanks from Zinaldin Shabana
The truth is, anything I write cannot give you even a little bit of what you have given us. But I would like to thank you with all my heart for what you have given me and all the patients and their families. Over the last three or so years, I have got to know many nice people in The Road to Recovery Association. An enormous thank you to your amazing team. You were my second family, you gave me more than I expected, you were like good beautiful brothers.
I want to send you a lot of love. Yuval, Noga, Yael, Hava, Tova, Amatzia and the dear friend who also accompanied me all these years, Ehud Bar. And to all the members of the Association. I wish you days and years of love, peace and tranquility.
I have already completed an important stage in my treatment and have come out healthy from skin cancer. And now I have treatment and a check-up in only six months’ time. I hope I always see you. And once again an enormous thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Love you, Zinaldin Shabana
Interview with a Volunteer
Shahar Steif and Shay Cohen / October 6, 2022
I first met Shahar Steif, an active volunteer in The Road to Recovery Association, on the Fun-Day out organized for the Palestinian patients, which took place last month on Ma’agan Michael beach. The heartwarming spectacle of this tall, broad-shouldered man with his large, loving arms wrapped around Qassem, a skinny boy bobbing on the waves in the sea, touched my heart. When I asked, I was told this was Shahar and Qassem. That’s Shahar Steif? I asked, and remembered the prophet of doom with his posts full of tirades, his regular presence at volatile demonstrations against right-wing rule and in heartwarming stories about Palestinian families in need of support…
About a month has passed and we are on a WhatsApp call between Ramat Gan and Paris. Shahar is sitting on a bench in the Marais district of Paris and tells me about Mahmud and Qassem who give his life meaning. I ask him about his relationship with the Association, and Shahar tells me about his work in an international communications company in Hong Kong, where he deals with the business aspects of the automation of commercial processes and supply chains. His work, which involved many trips abroad, was cut short abruptly during the coronavirus pandemic. He had heard about the Association some time ago, but when he realized that there was a need for volunteers in the northern region, he made contact and was immediately answered by Yuval, who immediately put him onto the driving roster that week.[ Read More ]
Victory of the spirit
Mona and Ghufran Awad and Shay Cohen / October 6, 2022
“If you can, on your way to the fun day out in Sdot Yam, please pick up Mona and Ghufran from Tel Hashomer” Yael Noy requested. I agreed, of course, but nothing prepared me for the relationship that was about to develop. The morning started early at the entrance to the Pediatric Emergency Center at the Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer. I got out of my car and started looking for a mother and daughter. To my great surprise, a sweet little girl in red glasses ran toward me with open arms, a broad smile and a cry of joy, and jumped into my arms, melting my heart, and in an instant removing any residues of hesitation or embarrassment. Following a long, brave hug, Mona and Ghufran got into the car and we were off. A ride full of difficulties and smiles, pain and hope, obstacles and love. The Road to Recovery. On the way we picked up my friend Yoram Aschheim, and continued on to the fun day out at Sdot Yam. Along the way I could sense the uncertainty and embarrassment of the mother, a young woman of 39, wrapped in a black dress and wearing a head covering. I tried to imagine her feelings, sitting behind two men who are talking in a foreign language and taking her and her daughter to an unfamiliar place. All fears disappeared as soon as we arrived at the beach. Little Ghufran , who was seeing the sea for the first time in her life, ran with cries of happiness straight into the waves. The girl’s beaming face was reflected in the mother’s happy expression, watching her daughter relaxed and happy for the first time in many months. [ Read More ]