United Hatzalah, Israel’s leading volunteer emergency medical service organization, will be kicking off its 18th-anniversary celebration in a special event that will take place on September 27th, at the Residence of Israeli President Isaac Herzog. During the event, the organization will be recognizing the contribution of ten individuals or couples who have played a major role in the development and success of the organization and its lifesaving mission to help provide the people of Israel with the fastest and free emergency medical response.  The number 18 holds significance as it is the numerical value of the Hebrew word “Chai,” which means “alive.”

During the Second Lebanon War, various Hatzalah organizations from across the country came together to form United Hatzalah under the leadership of Eli Beer who has since served as the organization’s President. Over the course of its existence, United Hatzalah has created a dedicated network of volunteer EMTs, paramedics, and doctors, who provide rapid-response medical care to people in need, regardless of race, religion, or nationality. The organization has reduced the average emergency medical response time to less than three minutes across Israel, often bridging the crucial time gap before ambulances arrive. 

Over its 18-year history, the organization has expanded its operations beyond Israel’s borders, providing disaster relief and medical training globally, most recently in Morocco following the devastating earthquake just a few weeks ago. Through their collaborative partnerships and innovative approaches to emergency medical care, United Hatzalah has set a high standard for quick and compassionate service, saving countless lives in the process.

Beer spoke about the significance of the upcoming event and said, “The celebration which will begin our 18th year of operation in our current format is not just a milestone for United Hatzalah but also an opportunity to recognize and thank our steadfast supporters. Many of these supporters have been with us since our inception, and without their generosity and unwavering commitment, our life-saving mission would not be possible. A committee from United Hatzalah’s board members together with Chairman Mark Gerson chose ten individuals or couples, who have made a difference over the past 18 years in the most impactful way. The recipients will be given special awards by ten volunteers who were also specially chosen to present the awards, and who themselves have shown an exceptional level of dedication over the years. This symbolizes the ongoing partnership between our donors and our volunteers and the work that they both do for the people of Israel by saving lives each and every day.” 

The recipients of the awards will be: Matan Adelson (Israel), Martin and Lauren Geller (NY), Basheva and Murray Goldberg (Florida), Harel Insurance LTD (Israel), The Kaylie – Yacoby Family (Israel-New York), Amy Korenvaes (Texas), Yaron Lemelbaum (Israel), Menachem and Rut Oren (Israel), Bob Ramsey (Arizona), Gil Sheratzki and the Ituran Company (Israel)

“We are grateful for the continued support from our donors,” said President and Founder of United Hatzalah Eli Beer. “Together with their support and the support of thousands of other donors who have joined them, we look forward to continuing to provide our services to the people of Israel, and beyond for the next 18 years, and well beyond that. I am so thankful that we will get to celebrate the beginning of our 18th year at the President’s house with a special address from President Herzog in front of our friends and supporters who are our partners in our lifesaving mission. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do.”