Canadian Hadassah-WIZO (CHW)
Many of us can recall scenes and lines from the film “Mean Girls.” Perhaps there were scenes that made us laugh, scenes that made us angry, and scenes that brought up familiar memories of life in high school.
However, if there is any message to take away from the film, it is that bullying hurts and it must be confronted.
As many of our children have returned to school, we do not always know what is happening during their eight hours while out of our sight. We may ask ourselves: are they happy? Who are they sitting with at recess and lunch? Were they picked in gym class?
Our jobs are to do our best to raise children who are kind, inclusive, and considerate. We have tasked ourselves with this mission to ensure that when we send our children into the world, whether it is to school, camp, the workforce, and so on, we know that our children will be respectful citizens.
At CHW Hadassim Children and Youth Village, CHW Nahalal Youth Village, and CHW Netanya Technological High School, the teachers, house parents, and counselors are charged with overseeing hundreds of children and ensuring that each child is being well looked after. In fact, throughout the year, these children participate in various workshops that teach the importance of being kind to your peers, not succumbing to peer pressure, and stepping in when you see a harmful situation.
Raising kind children is not a simple task; this we can all agree on. Click here to read an article on how to raise inclusive girls instead of mean ones.
Yesterday marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. CHW, in collaboration with its affiliates, is dedicated to the prevention of violence and the advancement of women’s rights.
One way in which CHW seeks to make an impact is through its support of World WIZO’s shelters for battered women.
The women who enter the shelter are in need of support and protection. Yesterday, in recognition of this important day, one woman shared her personal story. She spoke about leaving her home, her friends, and her work in order to escape the daily abuse she suffered. She explained the fear she had for her two daughters who witnessed the abuse and was frightened that they may too become victims.
This survivor shared her journey of overcoming the emotional and psychological damage that comes with being a victim of abuse. She shared, that with the support of the shelter, she is finally re-gaining control of her life.
The stark and awful reality is this: 600,000 children in Israel have been exposed to domestic violence in their homes. The victims are becoming younger, with 8% of young adults (aged 14-18) reporting that they have experienced violence from their significant other.
Only days ago a terror attack took place in the city of Rishon LeZion, neighbor to Assaf Harofeh Medical Center, and the victims were brought to the hospital for emergency treatment.
Seven victims were rushed to Assaf Harofeh: four who suffered from major panic attacks and psychological stress, three who suffered from stab wounds.
One of the victims is an 80 years old woman named Rachel Eisenkott. In an attempt to run away from her attacker, Rachel fell and broke her hip, in addition to suffering from a deep stab wound on her back. The medical team immediately operated on Rachel and she is now in the Intensive Care Unit.
Rachel is a mother of six daughters and seventeen grandchildren. Her family rushed to be by her side when they heard the devastating news. Sagit, one of Rachel’s granddaughters, shared, “Our grandmother is aware of what happened… she woke up this morning and remembered. We are a strong family and we will be all right. She will be afraid to leave her house, but even I worry.” One daughter shared, “I should have been there to protect my mother.”
Other victims included a 36 year old man who was stabbed in the chest multiple times and underwent emergency surgery. He is now recovering in the ICU. This man and his wife welcomed their first baby only a few days prior to the attack. A very brave twenty-six year old man is recovering at Assaf Harofeh from stab wounds endured during a successful attempt to stop the terrorist.
Assaf Harofeh was there for these victims to provide them with the emergency medical care that they critically needed. It is thanks to the medical team at Assaf Harofeh that these victims’ lives have been saved.
At both Assaf Harofeh and Hadassah Hospital, children are of the utmost importance. Sadly, many children who fall ill need to spend days, weeks, months, or longer at the hospitals. For this reason, both Assaf Harofeh and Hadassah do their best to create happy, child-friendly atmospheres.
Medical Clowns visit the children at Assaf Harofeh and Hadassah to help create a positive environment, distract them from their challenges, and ensure that the children are experiencing more ‘typical’ childhoods, in spite of spending part of their lives in the hospital.
During the holidays, the hospital arranges for special clowns and visitors. Recently, Winnie-the-Pooh made a special visit to the Pediatric Department at Hadassah Hospital and it made one little girl’s day!
Parenting is no easy task, but the love that a parent shares for their child is unwavering. A new video clip released shows real parents talking about the ‘ups’ and ‘downs’ of being a parent.
CHW understands the challenges of being a parent, especially for new mothers and fathers. For this reason, we seek to provide numerous ways to assist families wherever possible.
Through CHW’s daycares, parents receive support and assurance that their children are in safe and loving hands while simultaneously receiving an excellent education.
While caring for the children, our daycares reach out to the parents in order to offer them a sense of community within the daycare. Parents receive tools to assist them with their parenting needs. For example, parents receive lessons on how to deal with challenging behaviour in their child, how to provide nutritious meals on a budget, and so much more. Moreover, CHW’s daycares cater to families in need, assisting families who receive welfare support.
CHW’s devotion to parents in need does not stop at the end of the work day: CHW supports the WIZO Parental Hotline which provides a safe place for parents to turn to when in need. This free call centre aims to help parents with their parenting challenges at any hour of the day.
One thing is certain: CHW is there for you every step of the way. We value family and appreciate the love parents have for their children.