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Shalva wall

The most memorable time we spent in Jerusalem on this trip was our visit to Shalva.  Shalva serves thousands of people with disabilities empowering their families with an  
all-encompassing range of services from the ages of infancy to adulthood. Shalva gives equal access and opportunity to all participants regardless of religion, ethnic background, or financial capability. What began as an afternoon program for eight children in a local apartment, has grown into a national center serving an entire spectrum of Israeli society.
Due to the personal need, generosity and vision of the Malki and Kalman Samuels family, the Shalva facility is now a new, state-of-the-art building.. In addition to a professional staff, Shalva is staffed by trained volunteers, mostly teens and young adults from Yeshivas, schools and seminaries throughout the area. Visiting Shalva was a life changing experience for us. Although we saw young people with heartwrenching disabilities affecting motor skills, speech, vision and brain function, we left with joy knowing that these children have a happy place to spend time and reach their best selves.  Shalva also gives their families a break. We encourage our readers to learn about Shalva by visiting the website shalva.org, and perhaps consider a visit or a donation when in Israel. By the way, Shalva has a unique cafe which is open to the public.

Our granddaughter Shira Kalnitz, who is currently attending MMY seminary in Jerusalem, is one of  Shalva's weekly volunteers, and she will be running with Team Shalva in the Jerusalem Marathon on March 15. If you would like to support the team (all of the donations go to Shalva), please use this link: http://www.run4shalva.org/my/shirakalnitz

Shira and Shalva child 2

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