First Hug (association for abandoned babies)
Just as it was in 2018, it was again tough to find an organization with zero state funding, (with Israel’s high standard health care system), but eventually we were able to find one that ticked all the boxes for a suitable recipient.
Every year over 300 babies are abandoned in hospitals across the country, and First Hug is the only association that is specifically designated to provide emotional care to these lonely and abandoned babies. These babies remain hospitalized in various departments, sometimes for many months without a parent’s loving hug. The unfortunate fact is that the care of the nurses and doctors in the hospital is not able to extend past their responsibilities and duties.
Despite receiving no government support, First Hug are able to fill the vacuum that is created by the absence of parents and give the babies the human touch, the emotional treatment, the warmth, and the love that is so required for their development and recovery.
Volunteering is demanding, as most of their volunteers (80%) are women aged 60-65 whose children are grown up and have the time to spend endless hours with the babies. In the last three years, the Association cared for 650 babies in 29 hospitals, including Soroka Medical Center (a Israeli-Palestinian hospital that helps people from the West Bank and Gaza Strip), Schneider Children’s Hospital, Sheba Medical Centre (a children’s hospital that provides health care for children from across Israel and Palestine) and rehabilitation facilities such as Alyn Hospital, Aleh Negev (which treats all patients, regardless of religious belief, nationality or ethnic background) and Reut Tel Aviv.
Due to the COVID pandemic, regulations of the Ministry of Health for Israel now states that volunteers above the age of 60 are prohibited from volunteering in hospitals due to the risks of the pandemic. In order to continue to care for and hug these abandoned babies during these unprecedented and turbulent times, First Hug will use our donation to assist them in training 150 new volunteers aged 27-50 without underlying health conditions from across the country, with the donation also allowing them to treat 15 babies that are sick and abandoned in hospitals throughout the country.
The Tartan Army Sunshine Appeal is proud that we are able to help out this great organisation with the fantastic work that they do.
No Zoom call for this one as Sivan Almoz of the organisation was too unwell to be able to attend. So here instead is a presentation she forwarded to us:
And here is a letter we received from Sivan soon after the donation.