We arrived at about 10:20am and made our way to the hotel, where we had time to shower, change and relax before we were picked up to be taken to Beit Halochem.
We were fetched by our driver Arye, a wonderful and very knowledgeable man. He picked us up at 4:30 and took us to Beit Halochem Tel Aviv, a rehabilitation centre (one of 4 countrywide) devoted to assisting soldiers wounded in action (and also recently victims of terrorist attacks, IDF and civilian).
50% of the funding raised is through donations from around the world including bequests and wills, 20% is government funded and 30% is raised through membership fees.
We were given an extensive tour of the facilities including, basketball/badminton courts, tennis courts, heated pool, art and craft rooms, shooting range, hydro therapy rooms, weight training room, various presentation/conference rooms, a billiards/pool room, ping pong room as well as a creche and outdoor play area that included a children’s pool.
Besides the members, their immediate family members are also entitled to use the facilities, making this an incredibly beneficial project.
We met some truly inspiring people today, including a women wounded in the Dizengoff bombing, as well as meeting the tennis coach, a man who is by no means disabled but who coaches from a wheelchair so as to better understand his students.
Not all the wounds we saw today are physical, we met a few people who are suffering from PTSD, the centre allows all these survivors a chance at a normal life.
The overall feeling I got from the centre was one of happiness.
Having seen the work they do firsthand, it only makes me see how very important it is for us to support our brothers and sisters in Israel!