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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Chesed Mission 2015/5775: Day 8

With heavy hearts, we boarded the bus to Yad Lakashish, our first stop on the last day of this year's Chesed Mission. As we arrived many of us were astonished, Yad Lakashish is an organization that provides the elderly with purpose in life. They are given a job and in return they give the elders money and food. We had a chance to walk around the facility and see the elders at work painting silk, pottery and beads. We also had a chance to talk to them and distribute make-up to the women, and scarves to the men. At the end of our tour we visited the gift shop to purchase the works of the elders. It was amazing to see what people would do to help the elders who would normally be home sitting doing nothing.
After that, we headed towards Kever Rachel. As we sang the song Kol Berama, Rabbi Besser explained to us the meaning and context of the song. We learned about Rachel Emainu, how she was such a tzadekket and was always thinking of others before herself. When we arrived at Kever Rachel we each said a few perakim of Tehilim. As we left, I felt an atmosphere of chesed, and holiness.

Next we went to an army base that houses over 50 different units, this base served as a training center. We went to the search and rescue unit, where we watched two videos about the unit. We observed a demonstration of a rescue, where we saw the steps the soldiers take in order to save a person's life.
Then we boarded the buses and headed to Ben Yehudah street for some shopping and food before we sadly had to pack up to go back to America. We walked around and went to different shops to buy souvenirs for our friends and family.

Following this we went to the kotel for a final "goodbye". We prayed Arvit with tears in our eyes and went back to the hotel where we saw a slideshow of all the pictures from this Chesed Mission.
This trip was an amazing experience! It was my first time in Israel and I'm so happy I experienced it through this trip. We all went outside our comfort zones, learned how to forget our differences and unite through acts of chesed. Even though most of us are sad that the trip is over, we shouldn't be sad but we should use this experience as an inspiration. As most of know, chesed starts at home, and with all our experience we can definitely teach others and have an impact on society.
~Clarice Soffer