It’s clear from recent anti-Israel resolutions that the United Nations doesn’t care what happens in the Middle East. In contrast, Israel continues unfazed to perform the good deeds that a caring world really should be cheering.
Another two wounded Syrians were brought in for emergency care last week at the Baruch Padeh Medical Center in Poriya near Tiberias in Northern Israel. One of the injured, a 17-year-old, was treated for shrapnel wounds. Israeli doctors have cared for thousands of Syrians wounded in the endless civil war across the border. Meanwhile, Israeli surgeons in the South of the country saved the life of Yara - a 4-year-old girl from Gaza - after doctors serving the Hamas government amputated Yara’s leg but allowed necrosis to set in. Israeli doctors took care of the injury and fitted a prosthetic leg that meant she could walk again.
I almost choked when Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch showed that he could not care less when he mocked Israel for sending medical teams to Nepal. I strongly urge him to read this article, from Israel’s Dr Giora Weiser, who saved many lives whilst witnessing the appalling devastation and trauma. Fortunately the local Nepalese have been far more grateful than HRW for Israel’s care and support.
Anyone with even an ounce of care and compassion knows that Israel will go far beyond the call of duty to save innocent lives. East Timor just became the 50th country to send child patients to Israeli charity Save A Child’s Heart, whose surgeons successfully repaired the congenital heart defect in baby Lisa. SACH doctors have saved over 3,500 children’s lives.
Israelis care for the disadvantaged in society far more than any other country. Where but in Israel would the government appoint a Minister for Minorities in order to oversee that pensioners, students, women and the young are sufficiently cared for. And here are three recent features about organizations that care for specific disadvantaged sections of Israeli society. First is the Alon Center in Kibbutz Alonim, which caters for the needs of teenagers of normal intelligence with emotional and/or behavioral issues who have been unable to successfully integrate into the regular school system. Second is ALEH Negev that cares for the severely disabled – founded by Maj Gen Doron Almog, who gave up his army career in order to establish the village. Finally, here is an amazing video from ESRA that highlights what the English Speaking Residents Association is doing to help the 30,000 plus Ethiopian community in my home city of Netanya.
Israel is well known for its innovative devices that enhance the medical care of patients and the disabled. One of the most famous of these is the ReWalk exoskeleton that gives paraplegics the ability to walk upright. And a newly discovered positive side effect is that users become healthier physically and mentally, as the device exercises their body and boosts their self-image. You would expect mothers to care for their children, but in Israel this goes further. Israel’s Debby Einatan invented the Upsee harness in 2014 because her son couldn’t walk unaided. Thanks to her, over 6000 disabled kids can now walk tall with their parents. The harness can even normalize the child’s hip joint and improve head control.
Care for the elderly is another Israeli priority. Israel’s EarlySense makes sensors that detect when the vulnerable are at risk of falling from beds or chairs and has just announced a strategic cooperation agreement with Japanese giant Mitsui that will help launch the distribution of EarlySense products in Japan. On a much larger scale, Korean giant Samsung and Israeli startup Mybitat together are to develop an innovative smart home solution aimed at helping the elderly stay safe while at home. It combines cloud-based software, advanced sensors and behavior analytics to monitor seniors' daily routine and wellness.
But even a low-tech solution provides adequate care for the majority of seniors. Which is why Israeli charity Yad Sarah distributed emergency beepers to 20,000 people who live alone. Users can contact Yad Sarah, relatives or the emergency services at any time using a button on a bracelet.
No matter how careful you are, accidents can happen, often with painful results. Israel’s MedaSense Biometrics has developed a monitor to help in the management of pain. It uses a finger sensor to record vital signs and a unique algorithm to measure pain mathematically. MedaSense won the title of most innovative medical startup at the IATA Biomed exhibition in May.
To conclude, here are two examples of the uniqueness of Israeli’s caring attitude to the more vulnerable.
When a student’s baby started crying in one of the Organizational Behavior lectures of Professor Sydney Engelberg, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem professor picked up the baby, calmed it down and continued the lecture whilst holding the baby.
And finally, Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport halted international flights for 30 minutes when a nest with five hatched falcons was discovered in a navigational antenna. As the worried adult birds circled overhead, the baby falcons were carefully removed and taken to the nearby Ramat Gan Safari to be raised and then returned to the wild.
Israel – where everybody cares.
Michael Ordman writes a free weekly newsletter containing positive news stories about Israel.
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