Posts Tagged ‘bone marrow’

The Other End of the World?

July 12, 2017

people helping people around globe“But he’s at the other end of the world!”

“No problem,” said the experienced Ezer Mizion staff member. “Just watch.”

Here’s the story. A woman with cancer was in need of a bone marrow transplant to save her life. She needed it asap. Now! Not in a few months. Eldad had been identified by the Ezer Mizion Bone Marrow Registry as a genetic match but further testing was needed. Simple. A few tubes of blood and the test will be done. But what if the potential donor is happily vacationing in Cancun, Mexico? Do we wait till he returns? And take a chance on the patient’s condition changing for the worse? Do we take a chance on another person’s life?!

The Registry staff member contacted another Ezer Mizion division, Linked to Life which operates a What’s App program around the globe. Lights flashed. Cell phones buzzed. A Linked to Life member responded that he is in Cancun and planning to travel for New York that day. The blood was drawn by a local lab and transported to NY by the L2L member. Now, Ronit , office manager for the CEO of El Al in New York and another Linked to Life volunteer, came on the scene. Ronit contacted Yoram, director of El Al representatives in the U.S. Yoram got the head of the station at Kennedy Airport, and security officer Tal involved in the operation. On Thursday, after receiving the test tubes from Mexico via the first L2L volunteer, El Al representatives in N.Y. traveled to Israel and handed over the precious test tubes to Ezer Mizion.

The other side of the world? No problem when good-hearted Jews around the globe are linked together.

Based in Israel, L2L receives hundreds of calls daily. Come join us at the dispatch center. A call just came in. A grandmother, accompanied by her daughter, needs ride to the clinic.  The volunteer that responded later contacted the Ezer Mizion office to say thank you “These are real mentschen. They didn’t stop apologizing for taking my time. They were so grateful. .The grandmother is past the age of 90. At the time of the Holocaust, she was 17 years old. She had been through Auschwitz, work camps and Bergen-Belsen. She told me about her mother and little sister who were murdered in Auschwitz. ‘When I close my eyes, I don’t ‘just remember’ things; I literally see them happening.’ This tiny lady didn’t give up. She went on to establish a family which now consists of children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and continues to give and give. “I broke my arm recently and for a period, I couldn’t bake cakes for my grandchildren’s families. It made me sad but I’m back ‘in business’ now. As they opened the car door at the clinic amid a flurry of humble thank-you’s to me, I thanked Hashem for the zchus of having such a diamond in my car.

 

Another buzz at 1:30 AM. This one an emergency. A woman was unable to breathe and required immediate assistance. An ambulance had arrived and determined that hospital treatment was needed. But getting her there was impossible due to her wide girth. A large stretcher was needed. Ezer Mizion was contacted.  Does anyone in your Linked to Life Group have one? In moments I was wide awake and dressed. Together with the paramedics, we lifted the patient onto my stretcher and transported her to the hospital in time to receive the treatment she needed.

Alone? Never! No Jew is ever alone when his fellow Jews are Linked to Life.

Like to join? SMS: 011 972 52 580 8936

For further info: www.ezermizionusa.org       5225 New Utrecht Ave Bk NY 11219                               718 853 8400

Cancer on Its Way Out! Happy Two-Year Birthday to Me!

June 28, 2017

Numbers are funny things. They look nice and neat, march in straight rows. They create groups (3 of these and 5 of those) and somehow make us feel that everything is under control. Until one personally finds herself in one of those groups – the wrong one.  The one that people don’t like to mention. You know,   the C word.  Cancer.

That was me. The C monster opened its mouth and grabbed me right before my trip to South America. I had been planning it for months but it wasn’t going to be. I gave myself a compensation prize of some amazing tours in different countries but in between, I toured hospitals.

When cancer ruined my plans…

It was on the big trip to New Zealand, exactly a year ago. Right in the middle of a fantastic trek, when, dressed in a sunhat and attempting to conquer some mountain, I fell apart. I could barely do the last part of the trail, because my body started to weaken. They started doing all kinds of tests. It seemed that my liver, lungs, mouth, nose, skin were all affected but I was still going. The Ezer Mizion staff was there with me every step of the way, holding my hand, offering professional advice and helping out in countless practical ways. I started taking steroids and began to look like a balloon, and then things calmed down a little.

When Cancer brought me to the Emergency Room

But not for long. One day, I felt really strong pains in my leg, like I’d never felt before. We went directly to the Emergency Room to check out what it was. It turned out that… I’d broken my hip. Yes, it sounds strange, but it had broken, without my falling, without anything. They explained to me that this is one of the side effects of steroids. Those numbers again. I was “privileged” to be one of the “lucky few” for whom steroids cause fractures. Since then, there were a few other breaks in places that you can’t put a cast on. If I were a car, you would just replace those parts. But, guess what, I’m not a car. My body is not built for new replacement parts. It prefers to keep the ones it has.  So now, I can’t run, dance, walk, hike, and some other things like I used to…

The cancer did not stop me from living, though. I switched from hiking to taking some courses that I had always dreamed of.  It also brought many new things into my life, some good ones like meeting the unbelievably caring people at Ezer Mizion and some not so good like blood radiations that I had to do every two weeks and million new pills of all colors and sizes that decorated my kitchen counter.

Cancer Cancelled

But not forever. I’m celebrating a birthday this month. It’s the two-year birthday of my replacement. I did get a replacement of sorts. A bone marrow replacement. My friends at Ezer Mizion set it up for me.  They had to find a DNA match. I was very lucky, they said. From the over 856,000 people on their database, there was one match. His name is E. and he was happy to donate his marrow. Even though he didn’t even know me. I’m on my way to full recovery now.

So, happy two-year birthday to my body! Some birthday wishes…

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Happy Birthday to the End of Cancer

I wish me that I should soon stop going to hospitals, taking pills, and getting stabbed with needles.

That I should continue growing and flourishing in my new career (remember those courses?).

That I should soon have the strength to begin paying back and joining the thousands of Ezer Mizion volunteers in helping others like me.

Thank you, E. for donating bone marrow to me without even knowing me!!! You are a part of me now, whether you like it or not…

 

The See-Saw Remains on Up

April 26, 2017

DNA 3Everyone dreams about it. Very few ever have the opportunity. I was one of those very few. True, I didn’t jump into the ocean and save a child from drowning or dash into a burning building to save a baby but I did save a life. A forty-year-old cancer patient had only one chance to survive—a bone marrow transplant. A genetic match is vital for success and I was that genetic match. An Ezer Mizion staff member asked me if I would do it. Would I do it???! How could I not do it?! How could I live the rest of my life knowing that because of a little discomfort, a little inconvenience, a young woman was prevented from living the rest of hers?

Thus said N.D. a law student residing in Israel.

Plans were made. Appointments were set. I was given a run-down of what to expect and all was set to go until I received the phone call. Ezer Mizion thanked me for agreeing to donate but was cancelling the procedure. The woman’s condition had taken a turn for the worse and she was not in any condition to receive the transplant.

I was crushed. By this time, I was identifying with this anonymous person as if she were a close member of my family. And she would be. It would be my blood that would be coursing through her veins. And now it was not to be. I pictured her lying on her death bed with her family gathered around her. I wanted to be there with them. I wanted to hug her and tell her I’m so sorry. Instead I just stood there, still holding the phone. Numb. I read the obituaries for weeks after that, wondering at each entry, “Was that her?”

I was very involved in my university courses at the law school. It was in the middle of major exams when Ezer Mizion appeared once again on my display screen. “Your patient’s condition has improved. She can handle a transplant now but it must be done immediately. Are you available to begin the prep?”

The test I had studied all night for. The notes I had just copied for next week’s test. Grades. Reports… All meaningless now. All I wanted to know is what time I should be there.

My mother was even more excited than I was. She had had cancer at a similar age and is healthy now. She felt that by her daughter donating marrow, she would have a chance to ‘give back’.

At Schneider’s Hospital, I was told I would need 4-5 days of injections to increase the stem cells in my body. On the big day, my blood would be drawn, the stem cells separated from it, then returned to my body. This would continue all day until enough stem cells had accumulated. Then the little ‘bag of life’ would be infused into my ‘blood-sister’. We would be in the same hospital but we would not meet due to international law. Oh, how I longed to hold her hand during the procedure! But I would have to be patient. If all goes well, we’d be allowed to meet in two years.

I can’t deny that the injection period was uncomfortable but every ache was erased   when I watched them bring that little bag to its destination.

I was told that we were a 100% DNA match. Very unusual, they said. Now I lie in bed wondering who my DNA twin is. An unknown cousin perhaps? In one year, I am allowed to ask about her condition. Just knowing that she is healthy will be enough for me. And, if she is willing, in two years, I may meet the person who is alive because I didn’t say no.

Watching the Grandchildren Grow Up…Together: A DNA Success Story

April 5, 2017

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How does one say ‘Thank You’ for saving a life?!

her early sixties, Chava was a young grandmother to seven grandchildren. She was looking forward to many milestones in the future until she discovered that her future was very uncertain indeed. Twelve years ago, she had been diagnosed with lymphoma. A self-transplant of stem cells resulted in a cure and the nightmare seemed to be over until several years later the disease returned.  Would there be a cure this time? Only if a transplant can be performed using the stem cells of a genetically matching donor. The procedure was not difficult but finding this mysterious donor whose DNA corresponded to hers seemed to be nothing short of miraculous. He could be any place where Jews of her ethnic group have settled…South America, Canada, US, Australia, Europe. Anywhere. The first step was to contact Ezer Mizion, the largest Jewish registry in the world with its database of over 800,000 potential donors.  And, lo and behold, there he was, right there in Israel.

bmr tubes
Will a life saving DNA match be found?

Meir Pulver (43) spends his days protecting Israel’s population. He is Chief Superintendent of Israel’s Police Force. But that was not enough for this caring father of three. He wanted to do more. When he came across a request to join Ezer Mizion’s International Jewish Bone Marrow Registry, he didn’t hesitate. An opportunity to save a life? Of course. Who would not want to join? It would just take a little bit of his time. And so a few minutes filling out paperwork, a painless cheek swab and he was on his way.  Little did he realize that in only a short while, he would receive the momentous phone call: You have a chance to save a life!

There was further testing. In one home in Israel the air was electric. Would Meir truly be able to save a Jewish life? And in the other home, tensions ran high. Would a matching donor ever be found? And then the phone rang. In two homes. Almost simultaneously. Yes! Yes! An excellent DNA match.

Now things began to move quickly and it was not long before Meir’s cells were circulating in Chava’s veins. “Two days before my birthday, I found out that the stem cell donation I’d received had been accepted and my body had started producing its own cells,” she relates. “I felt as if I was reborn.” Chava’s husband is thrilled to have his wife back once again healthy and in great spirits after the very agonizing period they both went through. Together they look forward to watching their grandchildren grow up.  Meir’s father had recently passed away and he felt doubly blessed at being able to both save a life and provide merit for his father’s soul during the first year of mourning.

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Ezer Mizion: Where cancer is being eradicated- one life at a time

International law does not allow donor and recipient to meet until after one year and so the two families waited, counting the days and yearning to express themselves. The meeting took place a few weeks ago in the Ezer Mizion Cancer Support Building. Chava’s family gathered and began watching the door. Soon it opened. The two groups were drawn to each other like magnets. How could it be otherwise when the blood of one flows through the other. “We met an amazing person. A humble, noble young man,” said Chava’s family.

Ezer Mizion’s International Bone Marrow Donor Registry was established about 20 years ago  and today, includes 841,356 potential donors. Thanks to the Registry, 2,350 lifesaving transplants have already taken place. We’re one family with Jews around the world contributing funds to do the DNA testing, enabling every person to be a partner in saving human lives. This is our essence – each Jew responsible for his neighbor.

Czechoslovakia? No problem…

February 22, 2017

helping-hands“I’m sorry. He won’t be back in the office until a week from Tuesday. Please call then.” A typical response. Professional. No complaints. We all understand that being out of the office means being unavailable for work-related matters and we don’t expect him to interrupt his golf game or his very important meeting in China to answer our questions. However, when it comes to saving a life, Ezer Mizion will not accept such a response. What happened? Here’s the story.

Ezer Mizion’s Bone Marrow Registry has saved the lives of over 2000 patients around the globe. Recently, a call came in from Schneider’s Hospital that a six year old child needed a transplant as soon as possible.  Is there a genetic match available? A search was done. Success. Among the 800,000 registrants on the database, an excellent DNA match was found. The potential donor was contacted. She’ll be happy to donate but there’s one problem. The next level of testing must be done asap and she is currently in Brno in the Czech Republic. “Can I make an appointment with the lab for when I return in a few weeks?”  A natural response. Polite. Professional. The Ezer Mizion staff member could simply note on records: Donor out of country. Testing will be done when returns.  The file would then be closed pending her return. The patient? Perhaps his condition would still be such that he can benefit from the transplant. Perhaps not. Ezer Mizion was not going to take that chance.bmr tubes

Linked to Life, another division of Ezer Mizion that utilizes a What’s App program to make vital contacts worldwide, was called. Thousands of screens lit up while the test tubes were being prepared. ‘We need a volunteer to drive vital test tubes from Petach Tikva to the airport in Tel Aviv to meet someone going on the 3:50 flight to Vienna. In moments, a volunteer responded and the tubes were on their way. While he was driving, screens lit up again looking for someone scheduled to be on the flight to take the tubes. Bzzzz. Responding. Am at airport at Gate 123. I’ll take it.  Another Linked to Life volunteer was waiting at the Prague airport and drove the package to the Chabad House. The head of the Chabad House drove through the night to Brno and used his contacts to have the clinic opened in the middle of the night to draw blood from the potential donor. More clicks while the now-filled test tubes were making their way back to Brno. Anyone traveling from Prague to Israel on next flight? By the next morning, another Ezer Mizion Linked to Life volunteer was waiting in the airport at Tel Aviv to transport the tubes to the Bone Marrow Registry in Petach Tikvah. Less than twenty-four hours. Mission accomplished.

Living in the US and like to join Linked to Life? SMS: 011 972 52 580 8936

The Bubble Baby

February 15, 2017

 

pr-bmr-inbar-ronen-bubble-baby-w-out-mother-ok-to-useThere she sat blowing bubbles for her pre-schooler. Together with several neighborhood children, he ran after them on his chubby legs reaching out to touch the effervescent, multi-hued balls of magic, then watching, mesmerized, as they mysteriously made their way, flying up, up, up to never-neverland.

 

Young children are fascinated by bubbles. Yet certainly no child would want to live in one. As her tiny son ran on the grass with his little friends, she offered up a fervent t’filla of gratitude.   Up until recently, her son was called the Bubble Baby.  He was forced to live in a virtual ‘bubble’, a completely sterile environment, to save his young life. 

 

Ari* was born with SCID, a severe immunodeficiency syndrome. It was essential that Ari not be exposed to normal day-to-day bacteria, allowing him almost no contact with others including family members. A simple cold can be fatal. The soothing hug that only a Mommy could give, the delight of swooping down the slide at the local playground – all this was unknown to Ari. His world consisted of only hospitals, doctors and scary needles. His future?   Babies like Ari born with this rare genetic disorder usually do not survive their early years due to severe, recurrent infections.

 

“A bone marrow transplant could save his life,” his doctor announced at one of the numerous medical meetings.

 

“Give it to him! As soon as possible!” his parents jumped from their seats, grabbing hold of the lifeline that was offered to them.

 

“I wish it were that simple,” the doctor continued. “You see, to be successful, the cells have to come from a donor whose DNA matches Ari’s. Bone marrow transplants are used for many diseases including leukemia and many other forms of cancer and they literally save lives. But nothing can be done until we find a genetic match and so far…there is none.  We’ve put in a request to Ezer Mizion. They are the largest Jewish registry and since you are Jewish and genetics is based on ethnicity, we hope a match will be found there. They have over 830,000 people registered. Pray that we find the perfect one.”   

 

Ari’s parents didn’t have to be told twice to daven. Their tehillim did not leave their side. They understood that a match could mean a normal life for their son and no match? No match would mean…

 

One day their phone rang. The ring sounded like every other ring. But the voice on the other end – it was ecstatic. It was euphoric. And it said the words they had been davening for. “We found a match!!!”

 

A young woman in her early twenties had registered at Ezer Mizion’s International Bone Marrow Registry together with her friends, never thinking that she would ever actually be called. She had heard how many lives Ezer Mizion has saved. Over two thousand. But she also knew of many people who were still waiting for that life-saving match. And many people for whom it was already too late. And so she and her friends spent ten minutes answering routine questions. Ten minutes that would later save a little child’s life. And his children’s lives. And their children’s lives. Eternity.

 

The former ‘Bubble Baby’ chased another bubble and nearly caught it in his pudgy hands. His sweet, little face mirrored his utter joy.

 

“Thank you, Hashem! Thank you,” his mother whispered.

 

What if there had been no Ezer Mizion? 

 

Tel:718 853 8400        Mail: 5225 New Utrecht Ave Brooklyn NY 11219   Online: http://www.ezermizion.org

 

A Shining Example

February 1, 2017

pr-bmr-lieut-colonel-yossi-cohenFor more than twenty years, Lieutenant Colonel Yossie Cohen has been involved in extensive military operational activity as, until recently, head of the General Staff’s Operations Brigade for the Southern Front. He was engaged in many a battle for his country and it was he who coined the names of operations “Protective Edge” and “Pillar of Defense.” Involved in life and death decisions, the few moments he had spent as a young man ten years before at the Ezer Mizion Registration Station, filling out a one-page form was certainly not in the forefront of his mind.   Not even a blip on his own radar screen, those few moments would later make a major difference to a fellow Jew, a man his own age. What sort of a difference? The difference between being alive for his next birthday or….not. As crucial as his work in the army was, Yossie understands that this recent battle was just as vital. His DNA counterpart had tried the standard treatments of chemo and/or radiation to no avail. His physicians held out only one ray of hope. A bone marrow transplant. If somewhere, someplace in the world a person could be found who genetically matched him and was willing to donate his stem cells, his life could be saved. The cure existed. His physicians knew how to implement it. But, without that genetic match, nothing could be done. And so the cancer patient waited. He prayed. He hoped. He leaped each time the phone rang. He knew the facts. Unless a donor would be found soon, his condition would deteriorate and it would be…too late. “Think positive,” his family told him. And so he tried. But there, in the dark of the night, bad thoughts would come to fore and it was hard to even hope. And then came the phone call. It was an ordinary ring but the voice on the other end was anything but ordinary. It was jubilant. It was triumphant. A match was found! And the donor had agreed to the procedure. Another Ezer Mizion miracle! Lieutenant Colonel   Yossie Cohen was that match.

The procedure was explained to Yossie who did not hesitate a moment. The former Lieutenant Colonel became a private in the battle to save a life, obeying each request made by the Registry to perfection. The preparation. The formalities. And finally the Big Day when his life-giving cells were transferred to the body of another Jew. And then it was over. He had done it. The man would live. Yossie was on a high. He wanted to shout from the rooftops. Instead he settled for a proclamation: “I want everyone to understand that donating bone marrow is a simple procedure. I call upon all members of the Jewish people residing in Israel to join Ezer Mizion’s Registry.”

For further info: 718 853 8400               5225 New Utrecht Ave Bk NY 11219                 718 854 8400

 

 

Saving Lives on the Green

December 14, 2016

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Simmie Chiger and Herman Weiss, the guys that made it happen

Caesaria Golf Course in Israel changes its face every Thanksgiving weekend. A Peter Dye course while remaining enjoyable to the average golfer, it poses an invigorating challenge to the best of players. On each Thanksgiving weekend, however, the challenges consist of so much more than hills and handicaps. Each player enters the course with a sense of purpose. He is there to help save lives. Every stroke is a strike against cancer.

 

The event benefits Ezer Mizion’s International Jewish Bone Marrow Registry which has saved the lives of over 2000 Jews around the globe whose sole chance of survival had been a transplant. A ‘Hole-in-One’ Donor Pool has been created whereby all proceeds of the annual golf event are earmarked for genetic testing for a specific block of potential donors. The committee heads are notified each time a transplant of stem cells by a donor, whose genetic testing was funded by the Pool, takes place. The notification begins with the electrifying words: You have saved a life. To date,16 lives have been saved by the Hole-in-One pool since its inception seven years ago. As if to encourage this year’s participants, three of those sixteen transplants took place in October of 2016.

 

golf-israel-2016-carts-w-logos-15304448_755096737976598_7143135351909858764_oRan Saher, CEO of Maccabi Healthcare excitedly informs all around him, “Today wasn’t only about winning. It was about saving lives! Says Sheldon Shein, Executve Chairman of Hennig Diamonds: Playing in the Ezer Mizion tournament makes you think. You realize that there’s a lot bigger things in life than getting the ball in the hole. By joining the tournament, we can accomplish a ‘hole’ lot. Jackie Mukmelm, CEO and President of MAN Properties, “Just imagine a person who has given up hope and thinks that he will soon be leaving his family forever. Then one day, he receives a phone call   that he never thought he would get. It’s Ezer Mizion and they found a DNA match. He’s going to live! Wow! And to think that we, with our playing here today, accomplished that!

 

Thanks to all of you- those residing in Israel and those who visited Israel from across the ocean- for participating. We look forward to your joining us next year on November 20th, 2017.

 

Congratulations to our 2016 winners.

First Place: Stephane Benguigui, David Dadi, David Fitoussi, Jonathon Ohayon

Second Place: Mark Joffee, Saul Katzman, Neil Rubinstein, David Turner

Third Place: Elizur Agus, Eytan Bar-Chama, Jack Garih, Zev Weissberg

Most Honest Team: Ari Gruenspecht, Aaron Miller, Daniel Rubel, Simmy Zimbalist

 

Ezer Mizion provides services to over 660,000 of Israel’s population annually in addition to its Bone Marrow Registry which saves the lives of Jewish cancer patients the world over.

 

For further info: www.ezermizion.org 5225 New Utrecht Ave Bk NY 11219 718 853 8400

 

 

Bags of Chessed

November 30, 2016

Countless guests converged upon the palatial home of President Rivlin and, the following day, the Hilton, Israel Ballroom to participate in the grand event celebrating the achievements of Ezer Mizion’s International Bone Marrow Registry which has saved 2200 Jewish lives. Requests arrive regularly from 47 countries worldwide. Come join us on an emotional roller coaster as one speaker after another demonstrates its accomplishments.

 

idf-celebration-2016-gThe MC takes the stage. “This evening is dedicated to our heroes. The first was Moshe Shayek who was battling cancer. The only way to save Moshe’s life was with a bone marrow transplant. His friends went from door to door collecting 5000 samples. But, sadly, the hoped-for DNA match wasn’t found, and Moshe died. In gratitude to Ezer Mizion for its assistance, his parents found the inner strength to rise above their personal pain and suggested using the many samples to found a donor registry. Thus was born Ezer Mizion’s International Jewish Bone Marrow Registry. Moshe’s parents have joined us here tonight, full of nachas at what was created in the merit of their son.

 

“Two-year-old Naamah was diagnosed with leukemia. Ezer Mizion rallied to the cause and launched a nationwide campaign. Fifty-five stations were deployed across the country. And it worked! 4384 samples were collected in one day. After an extensive search, the matching donor was found, a soldier. But when the donor’s family was contacted, we discovered the family sitting shiva. The son had just been killed in a terrorist attack. In one critical moment, Naamah’s only hope disappeared. After three years of suffering and hopes, dozens of hospitalizations and grueling treatments, Naamah Biton passed away at the tender age of five. But, from the pool of samples collected in the campaign, six transplants took place, saving the lives of six Jews.

 

pr-amit-kodosh-bat-mitzvahSix year old Amit Kadosh needed a transplant to save her young life. The Jewish people rallied en masse. 63,045 samples were registered in one day, a world record that hasn’t been broken to this day. From among these samples, to date, 96 lifesaving transplants were carried out. Amit, who recently became Bas Mitzvah, is with us here tonight.

 

Allow me to introduce you to some other heroes.

 

Good evening. My name is Nitai Weiner. In 2013, when I was 15 and a half, I got leukemia. I went through a series of treatments, which helped for a while, but then the disease returned. In order to save my life, they had to do a bone marrow transplant. Last March, the transplant took place.. Today, I am healthy, thank G-d, and in another two months, I will turn 19.I hope to live a long, full life.

 

 

Good evening. My name is Yechiel Rebibo. We want to thank David Farajon for his gracious donation to Ezer Mizion which enabled hundreds of potential donors to be genetically tested. Genetic testing is costly and without his gift, these donors would not have been on the Ezer Mizion database. Thanks to this gift, my life and the lives of many others were saved. May you be divinely blessed, David. Of course, I want to thank the tzaddik, Ohr Biton, whose DNA testing was funded by the Farajun Family and found to be my DNA match. He donated his bone marrow and saved my life.

 

My name is David Farajun. I am deeply moved. My family has had the privilege to have 66 lifesaving transplants take place from our family donor pool to date. The next generation will carry on after us. This is my heritage to you, my children.

 

moti-zisser-gifGood evening. My parents are Motty z”l and tibadel l’chaim, Dr. Bracha Zisser, founders of the Registry.

 

It is a great privilege for me to stand here tonight for my parents. I grew up in the shadow of the Registry. Still, until I saw the meetings of the donors and their recipients I didn’t understand quite how marvelous this chessed is. Two strangers fall on each other’s shoulders with tears of joy and embrace as dear friends.

 

My father who is no longer with us here today built malls, hotels and marinas… but his name is associated, more than anything, with the concept of chessed.

 

My father knew that we are not really disconnected individuals, but rather a single human tapestry. Perhaps because of this understanding, the mitzvah of establishing the Bone Marrow Registry came into my parents’ hands.

 

You never know whom your donation will affect. It might go to strangers whom you will never meet. But the donation might one day help you yourself or your best friend…

When my parents established the Registry, they never could have dreamed that years later, that same Registry they founded would grant my father three years of life. It may not sound like enough, but during these years, he merited dancing at a son’s wedding and got to know three grandchildren.

 

pr pix bmr cells168_ne_photo_b90aaThe bone marrow that he received, the “bag of chessed,” as he called it, waited there just for him, only thanks to the understanding that he attained years earlier – that as a society, we are actually one entity.

 

Thank you to everyone who took and takes part in this important enterprise. Thank you to everyone who came here this evening. We wish a complete recovery to all the patients and many more years of productive activity in good health.

 

For further info: www.ezermizion.org 5225 New Utrecht Ave Bk NY 11219 718 853 8400

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ezer Mizion One of Three Nominees

November 23, 2016

Four years ago, Ezer Mizion’s International Bone Marrow Registry had reached the pinnacle by meeting the very stringent criteria of WMDA (World Marrow Donor Association). Of the one hundred members of the international entity, BMDW, only 20 had been accredited by WMDA. It was Ezer Mizion’s high level of standards had catapulted the organization to membership in the prestigious World Marrow Donor Association.

Now, only four years later, Ezer Mizion is one of the three nominees for WMDA’s World Marrow Donor Day Award. The winner is to be announced in the spring.

The WMDA event is geared to raise awareness among the world population of the need to take responsibility for a bone marrow registry in order to save lives. Ezer Mizion, together with its compassionate, giving Jewish population, exemplifies the concept of this responsibility.

Drives are held frequently in Israel to increase specific ethnic groups in its database so that when a member of that group will be in need of a transplant to save his life, the DNA match will be readily available for him, avoiding needless loss of life.

Another facet of Ezer Mizion’s pursuit of its goals is the agreement with the IDF in 2005. The IDF created an additional station to its recruiting centers enabling soldiers to join the registry as part of their induction. These young, healthy potential donors of varied ethnicity have greatly added to the Registry. Fifty thousand new recruits joined in this past year alone. Search requests received from 36 countries worldwide now have a much higher rate of positive response.

The IDF’s contribution to the Registry was celebrated in October in the home of President Rivlin who eloquently spoke of the mutual responsibility to the global Jewish community felt by the Jewish population which has allowed the Registry to rise to its present level.

The incredible growth of the Registry has only been able to take place because of the generosity of Jews throughout the world who have sponsored the astronomical cost of DNA testing. Their gifts have funded the costly genetic testing of each new, potential donor, thus enabling the Registry to grow to a total of over 800,000 on its database.

Through the media, the greater Jewish public has become aware of grateful cancer patients worldwide whose lives have been saved by Ezer Mizion. A young father of two tiny girls who had been terrified of leaving his daughters to grow up as orphans, a teen who is now studying to be a doctor so that he can help others, a social worker who suddenly found herself on the other side of the desk, a chubby five-year-old who is adorable even when he is throwing a tantrum… these are some of the many who will now have a future because of generous donors who have rallied to the cause, realizing that Ezer Mizion’s Registry acts as an insurance policy for Jews everywhere.

The recent nomination for WMDA’s upcoming World Marrow Donor Day Award is gratifying and shows the acknowledgement of Ezer Mizion’s exacting standards and inordinate accomplishments by this worldwide respected entity.

For further info: 718 853 8400     5225 New Utrecht Ave Bk NY 11219          http://www.ezermizion.org