The Smile Factory

What is Ezer Mizion? In addition to its Bone Marrow Registry and many other services, it is a factory. And the product? The product is smiles. Sometimes the going is rough. We may not be able to cure the disease but we can ease the pain and bring a smile to a face that hasn’t smiled in days. Like little Rachel* who has seen more pain in her four years than most adults have seen in a lifetime. Chemotherapy has stolen her innocent childhood from her and now she is on the way to Vienna with her mother and twin sister to continue treatment. Her mother packed a suitcase of the basics and Ezer Mizion packed a suitcase of smiles. If there is something that can ease the pain of a sweet little four-year-old girl somewhat, it’s Hello Kitty and so loving hands packed up every imaginable Hello Kitty item… a suitcase of emotional strength for the grueling months ahead. 

Then there was Dovi*. He was temporarily off treatment and emotionally drained. A strong dose of Vitamin Fun is what he needed and Ezer Mizion was there to provide it. He was treated royally with visits by celebrity singers and lots of fun. It was during a trip to the Safari that other Ezer Mizion divisions were called into play. His condition suddenly deteriorated and trained medical personnel were there to provide emergency treatment and transport him to the hospital. Later that night his condition underwent a crisis and Ezer Mizion’s Medical Referrals and Advocacy Division had him transferred to Rambam Hospital in Haifa with a prayer for his recovery and the opportunity to create more smiles with a revisit to the Safari in good health. 

Children are not the only ones in need of a smile. Sometimes it’s someone older. Much older. Like 102. Louisa is a holocaust survivor who had spent her working years as a nurse in Israel’s Belinson Hospital. Now she is living alone with only her memories to keep her company. Her memories… and a contingent of Ezer Mizion volunteers. A present was certainly needed. Something suitable for this major milestone as she turned 102. The gift was chosen. Something they knew she’d love. Something she had been dreaming of for years. A trip to the kosel with all logistics handled by Ezer Mizion’s expert staff! And after the trip? A party, of course. A birthday party full of camaraderie, love and good cheer for our VIP. 

A young man arrives with his sister, a cancer patient, from Tunisia. They have nothing. This time it wasn’t a gala birthday party but simply a package of basics – socks, pajamas etc. – that brought smiles to their faces. The young man became successful and it was he who offered to heavily discount or donate similar basic items to a group of hospital patients who would soon be released and own almost nothing. We can only imagine the smiles on the faces of both the giver and the givees.

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