Moshe Oref is a volunteer EMT for United Hatzalah. He is 26 years old, married to Shira, and is a father to two beautiful children, Neveh and Tohar. They live in Esh Kodesh, a small town located in the Shiloh bloc of towns in Samaria. Moshe works at a jeep company.

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Moshe Oref (left) receiving a defibrillator from regional head Menachem Bakush (right)

3 years ago, Moshe started volunteering with United Hatzalah. “One of the main reasons I joined the organization is my understanding that man’s mission and obligation in life is to take advantage of his G-d given talents and abilities. I love to be part of everything that has to do with bringing light and love to the world so I feel that United Hatzalah is really fulfilling for me and justifies our existence.” 


Moshe explains what is so special to him about the United Hatzalah organization, “They care so much about the welfare and well-being of the volunteers and it’s truly heartwarming. United Hatzalah is a family that everyone can count on, and they’ll be there in a time of need, for both simple and very complex matters. Saving lives as a United Hatzalah EMT is so special and I am honored I was chosen as volunteer of the month.”


Moshe shared a story of a rescue that was inspiring and stuck with him. “Most incidents are filled with lots of pain, and unfortunately, only some are exciting and have happy endings. I would like to share my experience as an EMT during the disaster in Meron this past April, where 45 people tragically lost their lives in a mass-crush incident.”

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Moshe helping evacuate a patient together with other EMTs and IDF medical corps.

“The work of a first responder at the scene of Meron was very hard, both physically and emotionally. But I remember other moments, moments where I worked together with other people at the scene, many of whom had no formal CPR training, but nonetheless, were kind-hearted and desperate to help. Together we went around the space where the injured and dying people lay in front of us trying to resuscitate the victims. I went through the process of CPR with them and explained what to do. Together we saved lives. Some of the people who were helping me that night were young men, some were teenagers, none of them will ever forget what their eyes saw that night and the efforts they undertook to save those right next to them.”


Moshe wished to add a poem that he wrote after the disaster:


Meron- 5771 
The staircase ascends between heaven and earth, 
And angels of destruction descend on it, 
And raise the martyrs onto it. 
And we, 
Angels of Life, 
Ministering Angels, 
We fight them with aching hearts. 
For each body there is a battle, 
For each soul we wage a war. 
And they, 
Descending and ascending, 
and each time, with more holy souls, 
And we cover their pure and holy bodies. 
The tears and the cries, 
The pain and the screams, 
They get mixed in with the night of tragedy, 
and envelop the heart in great pain. 
And now, 
Weeks later, 
The wind blows in the same narrow passageways, 
And gently whispers the story of the saints who lost their lives here. 
May they rest in peace and may their memories be a blessing.  

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.