Nonprofit NGO Chai Lifeline - which provides services for families of children with severe illnesses - recently held its annual Wish at the Wall trip to Israel.
During the trip, the participants, including 15 teenagers and their parents, hiked Masada, rode camels in the Judean hills, visited the Dead Sea and rode ATVs in northern Israel.
“Everyone has their own challenges, but also has their own strengths,” said Natalie Steifel of Florida, who accompanied her daughter Chana on the trip. “It’s incredible to be in an environment where you can be comfortable being you and your child being her, comfortable with their abilities or lack of abilities, and having a whole family here to support you. To literally pick you up and put you in the water, or to push your wheelchair, or just to play music and give you the opportunity to shine and be happy while experiencing Israel with such amazing people. We are so grateful to be here."
“Since his accident in 2019, I’ve always been looking at and treating Eyal like someone who is recovering,” Osnat Hadad of Maryland said about her son. “Seeing him do things that I would be afraid to try at home, seeing him walk more, walk farther, getting on a camel and up Masada was eye-opening. I don’t know how, but Chai Lifeline found a way to make it possible, step by step. Wish at the Wall has provided him with a newfound sense of confidence in what he is capable of and has given us parents the ability to let go a bit more.”
“It’s beautiful to see how this trip brings together a diverse group of individuals from across the world and from various backgrounds for an unforgettable experience, where they connect with one another and with Eretz Yisroel in a deep and meaningful way.”Rabbi Shlomo Crandall, director of Chai Lifeline Midwest
“It’s beautiful to see how this trip brings together a diverse group of individuals from across the world and from various backgrounds for an unforgettable experience, where they connect with one another and with Eretz Yisroel in a deep and meaningful way,” said Rabbi Shlomo Crandall, director of Chai Lifeline Midwest, who organized the event. “At the end of the day, we are all family, and that is the message which underlies all of our work and Chai Lifeline’s mission. We are a family, dedicated and loyal, supporting and encouraging each other through the most difficult of times.”
“Our mission to provide for social, emotional and practical needs of children and families doesn’t end when treatment does,” said Chai Lifeline CEO Rabbi Simcha Scholar. “Wish at the Wall is a wonderful example of Chai Lifeline’s continued commitment to our families who become family. This trip to Israel is a celebration of resilience and strength and a reminder of community and support during challenging times.”
About Chai Lifeline
Chai Lifeline describes itself on its website as "an international support network, providing social, emotional, and practical assistance to children, families, and communities impacted by medical crises and trauma through a variety of year-round programs and services."