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Ambulance Wheelchair Minibus for Aleh

Marijke Terlouw - 23 August 2019

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13). You could almost post it as a motto on the plaque near the entrance of Aleh. But even if it is not posted on a plaque, it is abundantly present everywhere: love. Here in the heart of Jerusalem is a home, school, health care centre and so much more, for the children who need love desperately: both physically and mentally handicapped children.

Just when I walk into Aleh, the place is buzzing with comings and goings. Rush hour at Aleh. It is the end of the afternoon. Some are in a hurry because something needs to be fixed quickly, but for the rest it is a kind of pleasant chaos. Everyone is going somewhere, home or maybe to another club or association. I take a quick glance into a sort of classroom. A couple of women are sitting on the floor, engaged with young children. They are doing exercises, they laugh with the children, talk to them – they don’t worry that everything is not neat and tidy. That seems to be the case everywhere here: you almost think that you are in a chaotic household, but nothing could be further from the truth. Everything has its rhythm and place.

In a slightly quieter place, I hear more about Aleh and about their request. The children are taken to and from Aleh with specially adjusted minibuses. These minibuses are used intensively. And they have to be replaced from time to time. Could Christians for Israel possibly help with a special minibus, a kind of ambulance? A minibus fitted with not only a lift but also fitted with medical equipment so that the children who need help while in transit can reach their destination safely as well.

Special Transport Needed
Shraga Evers from Aleh explains: “Our residents need help with just about everything, 24 hours a day. They need help with daily activities like eating, washing and sitting. The children are facing all kinds of challenges and serious medical issues such as epilepsy, breathing problems, severe physical disabilities and orthopedic complications. Some need special seats, others can only be fed with a tube. From time to time they need treatments we cannot provide and for which they have to go to a clinic or a medical centre. And then unfortunately there are acute medical situations as well.

These children cannot be transported in any kind of wheelchair van. They need a bus that is equipped like an ambulance so that they can be taken to their place of destination, safely and with the best possible care.”

Can’t You Call a Real Ambulance?
“For emergency situations we always can, although it still can be difficult, because ambulances are not equipped for special wheelchairs. We are talking about children for whom you need everything close at hand, for example, oxygen. But also, there are practical issues with the construction of a bus. Think about special safety belts and a floor on which you can secure all kinds of different wheelchairs.

We would like to deploy the bus for normal outings of our residents. Just like you and I, they like to go out on an excursion. Then we take them to a shopping mall to eat pizza. Or we go for a moment of relaxation in a park or on a beach. A lovely picnic, that sort of thing. Just like everybody else. These people have a sense of belonging too. We want them to experience as much of the same things as anybody else.”

On Behalf on Aleh’s Children…
Shraga Evers concludes: “So, my question to the friends of Christians for Israel is: can you help with this special ambulance wheelchair minibus? I am not asking for myself, I am asking on behalf of the eighty children who live with us in Jerusalem and almost the same number of children who come to our special school and health care centre. I am sure that there will be a lot of happy faces when these children can go out on a field trip. It would also give peace of mind to parents knowing that we are providing suitable and safe transportation whenever their son or daughter has to go to a specialist for treatment.
We know that your help is appreciated enormously. Whenever you are in Israel and feel like visiting Aleh or joining us as a volunteer, you are more than welcome.”

 

Your donation for the ambulance wheelchair minibus is welcome!

 

 

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