My family, particularly my mother, instilled in me from a young age, the importance and obligation that we must give back when and where we can. Ezer Mizion (Help from Zion) is a fantastic charitable organization that is close to my heart. I have been working with them for nearly twenty years, and I consider it an honor to support such an important charity that is doing amazing things.
Ezer Mizion: A Story of Hope
Ezer Mizion was established by Chananya Chollak. He originally did so to help people in need of dialysis by organizing and providing ambulances for transportation to and from treatments across Israel. Chananya filled a need, and his organization continued to grow as more people turned to him.
From these humble beginnings, Ezer Mizion has grown into the largest not-for-profit charity operating in Israel. Today, it offers assistance to individuals and families who are facing a variety of acute health challenges, such as cancer. In addition, the organization helps disabled adults and children with special needs. The goal is always to preserve the dignity of the person who needs the help and to improve their quality of life.
A Fortuitous Coincidence
My mother is a dynamo, and through a series of serendipitous events, she “accidentally” discovered Ezer Mizion and immediately began to explore what it did. She found herself on a phone call with the founder Chananya Chollak and CEO, Chaim Freund, and in the course of their talk, she explained that she was looking for a meaningful way to memorialize her father, Jacob Fried. Within hours, they were sitting with her lawyers, and she became a major contributor to Ezer Mizion, donating a building in Israel that was then named in honor of my grandfather.
An Important Organization, A Growing Relationship
My connection to Ezer Mizion has strengthened and deepened over the years that I have been working with it. I have had the benefit of witnessing firsthand how important its work is. Thousands of people rely on Ezer Mizion, and just as importantly, thousands of people have an avenue through which to volunteer their services thanks to Ezer Mizion. A person never knows when they will need help—not necessarily financial help but logistical help navigating the healthcare system, and sometimes just encouragement
Ezer Mizion and Alzheimer’s
I am proud to have played a role in establishing the Tzipporah Fried Center, named for my grandmother, which helps to ease the burden on families navigating life with a family member diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. This incredible program supports more than 3,000 families in Israel.
Bone Marrow, Corona Times and Greater Challenges
Ezer Mizion has moved mountains during the pandemic. In an exceptionally challenging year, it found ways to deliver help to those in need. It was able to facilitate and support 400 transplants in nearly impossible circumstances. The Ezer Mizion Bone Marrow Donor Registry, which we actively support, is the largest registry of Jewish bone marrow donors (Jews are genetically unique and have difficulty finding transplants in the general population) has completed nearly 4,000 life saving transplants since its inception, and currently has nearly 1.1 million potential donors enrolled.
Also, the organization was undaunted in its laser focus to make sure that people who were in quarantine were able to receive cooked meals, medicine, and emotional support. It increased its reach by partnering with the IDF Home Front Command.
Giving and Receiving: Two Sides of the Same Coin
We all hope that we can always give and will never need help, but life does not always work that way. By being a giver, you learn that there is no shame in receiving when you are in need. It is through receiving that we learn to give.