On Thursday 27 June 2019, I attended the very emotional graduation ceremony at WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim Boarding School and Residential Home in Haifa, sponsored by WIZO Australia.
WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim treats the severe behavioral problems of children at the far end of the at-risk spectrum, a result of their emotional, spiritual and environmental backgrounds.
This year a record 17 students graduated the 12th grade at Ahuzat Yeladim.
"It was as if you came and led me by the hand from shadow into light. That's how I felt, that you had given me your hand and led me across a watershed of light, it was so simple, as if it was completely natural for a person to do that for a stranger."
Those words, from the David Grossman novel "Be My Knife", were read by Yossi Saragossi, Director of WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim to the graduates.
"A student came up to me yesterday and said although he was happy to graduate, he was also a bit sad because it was hard for him to leave." Yossi shared in his speech. "He said that this school really changed him and that there is no other place in Israel like WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim."
When I was was asked to offer my greetings to the graduates on behalf of WIZO, I thanked Yossi and his his staff for their devotion to WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim and their endless efforts to give the children and youth a better and brighter future.
"It gives me great pleasure to congratulate the graduates, students and staff of WIZO Ahuzat Yeladim," I said. "You are amazing. Your work here is exceptional. I wish you all the very best the universe can provide you with, and Mazal Tov!"
President, World WIZO