CHW Weekly Stories

Canadian Hadassah-WIZO (CHW)

Caring for Elka

For 100 years, CHW has cared for children, and while circumstances may change over the years, CHW’s dedication to their needs has remained unwavering. Through our support of six daycares throughout Israel, children are nurtured and protected in a loving and enriching home environment.

Elka is one little girl whose life was changed through our daycares. Sadly, while Elka’s mother was pregnant, her father was killed during active service in the IDF while fighting in Gaza. Elka’s mother was devastated and when she was born, her mother immediately rejected her.

For the first few months of Elka’s life, her mother refused to pick her up leaving her to cry herself to sleep. Finally, Elka was taken in by her aunt and uncle to be raised; though they already had six children of their own.

When Elka was five months old her aunt needed to return to work as she could only take a short time off when first taking in her niece. Elka’s aunt decided to enroll her into a WIZO operated daycare; a place she had sent all six of her children and was confident in.

Elka immediately took to her new environment; smiling and laughing as she learned to crawl and even took her first steps in the daycare! Elka has grown into a well-adjusted little girl who is happy and loves to draw!

CHW was there to provide excellent care and a sense of hope for Elka and her family in their time of need. In a CHW daycare, children receive an enriching education, specialized programs to promote the development of their physical and motor skills, and well-balanced nutritious meals daily.

Grants of Excellence

CHW Nahalal Youth Village was among the four WIZO Schools to receive grants of excellence from the Israel Ministry of Education as a result of the high achievements of their students this year. This was the second year that CHW Nahalal Youth Village has received this grant!

CHW Nahalal Students

CHW Nahalal students

This incredible achievement defines CHW Nahalal as a leading school in Israel. Some examples of the outstanding students from CHW Nahalal include Jenya, a Na’aleh child who came from Moscow to Israel in the hopes of a better future. Jenya is a dedicated student who has been excelling since her arrival at CHW Nahalal. She is planning to go to the Technion following graduation!

Lin

Lin, a CHW Nahalal student

Lin is another excellent student, originally from the north. Lin’s dream is to join one of the most elite units in the IDF, the Information Technology Unit. Lin knew that coming to Nahalal to be a part of the Anieres-Nahalal Program was her only chance to fulfill her dream.

Professor Rivka Lazovsky, Chairperson of the World WIZO Executive congratulated the students and teachers, and expressed, “At WIZO, our teachers and the educational staff create bridges every day for our students to create better and happier lives for themselves.”

Click here to read the original article.

Our Daycares are Changing Lives, One Child at a Time: Maya’s Story

Maya arrived at a CHW Daycare when she was only two years old, after being referred by Welfare Services. Maya is originally from Ethiopia, and was being raised by her maternal grandmother. Her mother was suffering from severe depression, and had attempted suicide when Maya was only a few months old.

When Maya initially came to the daycare, she was a scared and shy child. Maya did not speak a word of Hebrew, and the only language that she knew was Amharic. Maya refused to let go of her grandmother, and did not want to be left alone. Initially, Maya showed no interest in playing with the other children, preferring only to sit by herself.

The caregivers tried very hard to support Maya’s needs and encourage her to play with the other children. They would spend additional one-on-one time with her, ensuring that she was eating, sleeping, and developing. However, Maya was still an unhappy child.

One special caregiver, an Ethiopian woman named Semu, decided to take Maya into her care. She spoke to Maya in her native language, combined with a few Hebrew words in an effort to teach Maya the language. After a few weeks and with a great deal of patience, Maya said her first Hebrew word, “smile.”

This, Semu shares, was the turning point for Maya. The moment Maya said her first word in Hebrew, Maya began speaking. She would combine Hebrew and Amharic when talking with the other children. Maya became more extroverted and happy, making new friends and playing while at daycare.

Maya’s grandmother is amazed by her transformation and incredibly thankful for the daycare’s unconditional support. In fact, Maya is now teaching her grandmother Hebrew in their home!

The names have been changed for anonymity.

Celebrating Sigd in our CHW Projects

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Sigd is an annual holiday in the Ethiopian community that commemorates the receiving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. As there are many Ethiopian Jews in Israel, this is a state holiday and celebrations take place throughout the country.

At CHW Netanya Technological High School and CHW Hadassim Children and Youth Village, we have many students from an Ethiopian background. Both schools held ceremonies in celebration of the holiday.

CHW Netanya and CHW Hadassim combined the musical and dancing festivities with teaching the students about the Ethiopian Aliyah to Israel and the significance of this holiday.

Many of the Ethiopian children who attend CHW’s projects are the first generation of Israeli-Ethiopians; their parents came through Operation Solomon.

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At CHW Netanya and CHW Hadassim, these children are given the opportunities and tools to become empowered, confident, and productive in order to turn their dreams into reality.

Olive Season at CHW Hadassim

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The students from the Agricultural Department at CHW Hadassim are always busy trying new things, whether experimenting with unique vegetation, promoting an environmentally friendly atmosphere in the community, or utilizing Hadassim’s groves!

This past week was no different! Last year, the students planted olive trees and cared for them throughout the duration of the year. As it is November, the optimal month for harvesting olives, the students embarked on picking the olives!

The students collected hundreds of perfectly ripened olives and bottled them; preparing them to be turned into olive oil, soap, or simply eaten!

Have a look at the photos of the students busy at work!

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