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Beit Halochem Canada Raises Funds To Aid Disabled Veterans of Israel

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With the help and support of Beit Halochem, Nati Hakshur has recovered from injuries sustained in a terrorist rocket attack and is now happily married and raising 2 children. (Photo: Supplied)

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Beit Halochem Canada, Aid to Disabled Veterans of Israel is committed to rehabilitating, rebuilding, and enhancing the lives of over 50,000 Israelis disabled in the line of duty or through acts of terror.

Since its 1978 founding, the organization has raised funds to provide rehabilitative services and programming for disabled veterans and their families at state-of-the-art Beit Halochem Centres across Israel.

During times of calm or conflict, terror is a constant reality facing Israel. Beit Halochem, unfortunately, receives new members on a weekly basis through continuous incidents of rock throwing, stabbings, and vehicular rammings.

During May’s Operation Guardian of the Walls, Israelis were killed and injured. Some of those injured will arrive at Beit Halochem in the coming months and will meet other disabled men and women whose lives have been enhanced by the organization and its dedicated staff and volunteers. While each of our disabled members has their own story, we share those of three injured under diverse circumstances. 

In August 2011, Nati Hakshur was with a friend outside his Beer Sheva home. Suddenly, rockets were launched from Gaza.

Having no time to reach the bomb shelter, they lay on the ground. Nati recalls hearing “blasts over our heads. We looked up and saw the Iron Dome filling the sky with light.”

It was then that a rocket exploded and Nati was thrown several metres. He saw his right leg lying beside him on the ground. Nati was in critical condition when he arrived at the hospital. He had lost his right leg and much blood and the doctors fought to save his left leg. For months, Nati endured multiple surgeries, fevers, infections, and crushing anxiety over whether he would walk again. 

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Nati and his family were devastated, but his outlook improved when he arrived at Beit Halochem. “I was given the greatest support. I met so many people who were there for me. To see them with injuries like mine and getting on with their lives – they helped me nearly as much as the physical rehabilitation.”

In the 10 years since the rocket changed his life, he says, “Beit Halochem gave me many tools. I’m doing things I never thought possible.” Among his proudest accomplishments are being a happily married father of two children and, paying it forward, a mentor to the newly injured.

Nati Hakshur

Susana Semenduev made aliyah with her family from the former Soviet Union. In 2008, she was a 22-year-old commander with the Border Police, the unit that prevents terrorists from infiltrating Israel.

When a gunman opened fire at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Jerusalem, Susana’s fellow soldier was killed instantly and she was seriously wounded by four bullets – hitting her in the head and chest and crushing most of the bones in her left arm. Fearing her fallen friend’s body would be kidnapped, Susana, lying injured on the ground, shot at the terrorist and caused him to flee. 

Susana Semenduev in uniform before being injured. (Photo: Supplied)

She underwent several procedures, including cranial surgery and, for a time, blindness seemed likely. Following a lengthy hospitalization, Susana continued rehabilitation at Beit Halochem Tel Aviv, including physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, and occupational therapy treatments.

Today, her vision and her arm’s range of movement remain diminished. A practicing attorney-at-law, Susana says her dreams are simply, “To succeed in my profession, have a family, and accept my injury.” 

Rehabilitation programs at Beit Halochem Tel Aviv helped Susana Semenduev towards a new career in law. (Photo: Supplied)

Yoseph Haddad was an 18-year-old from Nazareth when he enlisted in the IDF’s Golani Brigade. Though not required to serve as a Christian Arab, he volunteered to serve his country.

Just four days prior to the Second Lebanon War (2006) ceasefire, his squad was hit by a Hezbollah missile. Several of his friends were killed and Yoseph suffered serious injuries over his entire body, including the severing of his leg. Following surgery that successfully reattached his limb, he faced intense rehabilitation at Beit Halochem for nearly a year.

Yoseph is still defending his beloved country, now ensuring accurate representations of Israel and the relations between its Jewish and Arab citizens. As an internationally renowned social activist and media personality who travels the world to fight antisemitism and anti-Israel lies, Yoseph’s insightful comments and observations were in particularly high demand during the recent conflict. 

Yoseph Haddad recovered from a grave injury after intense rehabilitation at Beit Halochem. Now he works “to bridge gaps of mistrust, to help Arab Israelis become more a part of Israeli society.” (Photo: Supplied)

While the country was locked down by COVID-19, Beit Halochem Centres remained open to members for their much-needed rehabilitation. Deemed “essential services” by the Government of Israel, the designation demonstrates the organization’s central role in the lives of those who have given so much while protecting Israel.

Likewise, during Operation Guardian of the Walls, Beit Halochem never closed and continued to provide vital therapeutic services. Many of those afflicted with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) experienced significant relapses during the constant rocket barrages. Emotional support was available with staff and volunteers reaching out to the most vulnerable to ensure their safety and well-being.

Beit Halochem Centres in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Beer Sheva, and the future Ashdod provide a wide range of exceptional rehabilitative services, including physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, specialized sports equipment and training, creative and cultural activities, and family programming.

Engaging programs addressing special needs, demographics, and interests are available including crucial PTSD support groups, Young Veterans Clubs, and Senior Citizens Clubs. Art classes and singing and dance troupes enhance self-esteem, while participating in team sports improves strength. Premier athletes, some of whom discover their talent only after injury, benefit from specialized coaching, training, and equipment. Many compete on the world stage – including five Beit Halochem athletes among the Tokyo Paralympics’ Israeli delegation.

Over 50,000 disabled veterans and survivors of terror rehabilitate through sports, cultural, and physical therapies at state-of-the-art Centres, with the support of donors to Beit Halochem Canada.

Beit Halochem is the only organization that takes care of Israel’s wounded veterans from the time they are injured and for the rest of their lives – while empowering them to be active participants in Israeli society. With life plans suddenly derailed by injury, scholarships can assist to determine new directions and regain independence.

Donations to Beit Halochem Canada, Aid to Disabled Veterans of Israel acknowledge the great sacrifices our injured Heroes have made, and continue to make, on our behalf.

More than ever, Israel is a symbol of democracy, spirit, and security for Jews everywhere. However, the country’s extraordinary achievements come at a high cost. Through unending acts of terror, border infiltrations, and conflicts, the number of disabled veterans continues to rise.

As Israel steadfastly continues its pursuit of peace, casualties do not stop and Beit Halochem Canada is there to help when another life is impacted. With our donors’ support, we fulfil our commitment to assist Israelis, like Nati, Susana, and Yoseph, disabled in the line of duty or through acts of terror, in reclaiming their lives. They have been there for us. It is now time for us to be there for them. 

A long-time, second-generation donor and dedicated volunteer with Beit Halochem Canada, Aid to Disabled Veterans of Israel, Marilynne enjoyed a lengthy PR career in the arts & culture sector prior to joining the organization as its Communications Manager.

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Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

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