The first time I walked into the SACH home, I got the chills. It was inspiring to learn about the organization’s role in bettering the healthcare of children on a global scale. Being around these children from all different countries, running around and enjoying the air of Israel melted my heart even more. SACH is a unique organization in that they accept and cure anyone despite their ethnicity, religion, nationality or race. And seeing this effort in global unity be actualized in the Land of Israel gave me an even deeper confidence in standing by my country’s simple desire to do good, despite how media portrays our people. They don’t discriminate, as the main theme of the organization is Tikun Olam, fixing the world. It is powerful to recognize that Israel, a country that is a victim of discrimination, is at the forefront of abolishing discrimination from our world.
While volunteering in the home, I had the privilege to meet Mohammed on the day he was discharged from the hospital. Within the first moments of our meeting, he pulled down his shirt and showed me his scar, of which he was very proud. That raw moment of vulnerability during which Mohammed exposed his weakness allowed us to forge a bond instantly. Even from that first day we met, he was bossy yet vibrantly full of enthusiasm. Although I didn’t speak much Mandinka and he spoke little English, we totally understood each other. I would make a face, as in you-know-what-I’m-thinking, and he would laugh in agreement. He would hint to an activity he would want to do, and I would run after him toward it, attempting to teach him English along the way. We formed a connection that is truly unforgettable; even my family and friends back in America started to text me: “How is Mohammed today?” and “Please send us the daily picture of Mohammed.” Whenever I got to the home, Mohammed would jump into my arms with excitement and wouldn’t let go of my hand until I had to leave. It is the strength that SACH instills in these children at their weakest moments that heightens their emotional intelligence way beyond their years. And it is in that place inside of my new 3-year-old friend in which our bond formed.
I am so lucky to be part of the SACH family and am ecstatic to see how many more lives are positively impacted by this exceptional organization.