“The lighthouse leading the organization” – such was the description of Uri Lupolianski, founder and president of Yad Sarah, by Yishay Lapidot, on the event of the founder/president’s speech to the southern volunteers.
Applauded by the volunteers, Lupulianski said:
“Here you are – volunteering with all your might, with that shine in your eyes, ready to give from yourselves to others, giving up your own wishes in order to care for others, and doing all that with profound devotion, day in day out, with no rest summer or winter, any time, all the time.
It was no wonder to me when during Tzuk Eytan I had been informed about the unequivocal response of the southern volunteers, people who opened the branches in spite of insufficient safety conditions, people who arrived even at night time and regardless of physical difficulties.
When in ordinary times there are such devotion and readiness of the volunteers, in times of emergency even more so: the good on routine becomes better under stress. You volunteers, who usually work wonders, presented your greatness during these difficult days.
Thanks to the mutual responsibility among Am Israel and the acts of grace and utmost devotion, God helped, saved, and rescued. It can almost be described as a cloud that wrapped the south, defending its people against destruction, suffering, and bereavement.
Such unity of Am Israel touches the sky. I am privileged to tell you on behalf of all of Am Israel: thank you and all your family members. May we continue with our blessed normal work”.
The message of Uri Lupolianski, recorded also in a movie produced especially for this event, mentioned the horror moments of the alarms heard before missiles landing and also the solution offered by Yad Sarah not only to the handicapped: wheelchairs for swift transferring of many people to sheltered areas. In some cases, special efforts were invested in bringing wheelchairs to those who needed them.
The purchase of hundreds of wheelchairs and the transport to the different destinations were made possible thanks to the President’s fundraising among the organization’s friends across the world.
Rubik Danilovitch, the Mayor of Be’er Sheva, praised the giving, grace, and love expressed in the work of Yad Sarah’s volunteers:
“You are the strong Am Israel”, he said. “Talking about national strength refers not only to the Iron Dome, which is a highly important means of defense that immensely boosted the feeling of personal safety. However, Israel’s true iron dome is its people.
We have observed it throughout Israel’s struggles and now in Tzuk Eytan: this is Yad Sarah, in times of routine and of emergency, activating through its country-wide branches the people who give of themselves, who know how to embrace. You are the beautiful Eretz Israel, people who choose to be responsible. Women and men, religious and secular, citizens of many years and new immigrants, Jews and Arabs – all are giving their hearts and souls endlessly, all are working wonders by way of Love Your Neighbor as Yourself. Whoever sanctifies human life, sanctifies God”.
Moshe Cohen, Yad Sarah CEO, praised “the volunteers of the organization that leads the nation’s unity, involvement and giving. By God’s help we will continue together with utmost energy to support the Israeli people. The various people gathered here share one mission, one wish – simply to implement grace“.
He added: “I wish to thank the Mayor of Be’er Sheva for providing to us the means for getting together here; Mr. Asher Greenbaum, Liora Zafrani and the wonderful Jerusalem staff; Spideh Yom Tov who invested so much for the sake of this event’s success; Michael Benson, director of Be’er Sheva branch who could not attend due to his sickness; special thanks go to Kobi Aderet and Reut Barbi, actors of the Fringe Theatre, who for the third time now fully volunteered to perform their play; to the directors of branches and departments – my partners in doing; to my teacher and Rabbi, President of Yad Sarah Uri Lupolianski, who has been accompanying me step by step with so much love in his great heart to Yad Sarah and its volunteers”.