United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Eliasaf Bagdari is 35-years-old, is married, and has five children ranging from 12-years-old to 8 months old. Eliasaf has been volunteering with the organization for the past two years since he graduated from his EMT training course. “It has been my life’s dream to become a first responder. Ever since I was always a child I’ve wanted to be involved in medicine and help others. I very much enjoy helping others and find that it gives meaning to my day-to-day routine. Through my actions, I hope to educate my children to follow in my footsteps.”
Eliasaf believes that if he has the capacity to help others then he should. “I volunteer wherever I can, not just with United Hatzalah, but also with Yedidim, (a non-profit automotive assistance organization that provides roadside assistance to stranded drivers.)
“As it is written in Ecclesiastes, ‘Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again,’ send out as much good into the world as one can because one day it will come back to help you.” I believe in this ethos of helping others and whatever I do I try to educate my children to do so as well. My kids have gotten into it. My wife recently bought my seven-year-old an Playmobil ambulance and when opened the package I caught him playing with it and saying, ‘There is a person having chest pains on a nearby street, don’t worry, United Hatzalah volunteers are en route.’”
Eliasaf said that he has spent his whole life trying to help others and that United Hatzalah has given him the perfect method of doing so. “I served in the IDF for 10 years and was released three years ago. When I found out that there was an EMT training course in my area I signed up and even brought a friend with me. Since then I have become a very active volunteer and am well known where I work as an EMT.”
Eliasaf began working in the Moseroth factory which manufactures steel cables and security fencing. “The factory is very supportive of UH and its work and even donated a defibrillator to the organization after an incident that occurred on site.”
Eliasaf recounted the tragic story. “Just as I was in the middle of my EMT training course, I was already working in the factory. One of the other workers fell off a high shelf and landed on his neck. Another worker found me and said, “aren’t you studying medicine or something like that?” I responded that I was studying to be an EMT and he called me over to where the worker had fallen. I had been in a different room and was unaware of the emergency. Once I saw the unconscious man I followed my training, called for help, checked the man’s vital signs, and when I found no pulse, I initiated CPR. I was joined by an ambulance tea that arrived sometime later, but we were unable to save him. When I graduated, the factory donated a defibrillator and the organization decided to give it to me to carry so that there would always be one nearby. Since then, I have been to more than a few CPR calls, and thankfully some of them have been successful. I have also merited to be able to assist in births and have helped many others over the past two years. But I don’t keep a count of those. I don’t look back and think of what a great job I did, I just look forward to those who I can help in the future and I count how many years I have left that I will be able to continue to help others.”
Eliasaf responds to between 30-40 medical emergencies per month, in addition to the ambulance shifts that he takes part of. Even the night before the writing of this article, his neighbor called for an ambulance and Eliasaf arrived in less than a minute to help treat his illness. May he continue to help many others for many years to come.
To learn more about our Year of the Volunteer project, or to send a message to one of our volunteers, please click on the link to our dedicated Year of The Volunteer webpage. YearofVolunteer.com