Shalom Hadassah Friends!
I would like to bring you up-to-date about the financial situation at Hadassah Medical Organization (HMO). Here is the latest report from Hadassah National President, Marcie E. Natan: “A recovery plan has been created, in that discussions occur regularly with the Government of Israel, the staff and the unions at HMO, and the Health Funds (government owned insurance companies). The major components of the plan include: new salary guidelines and pay practices, better staffing ratios, increased utilization of operating rooms, renegotiating reimbursement rates from Sick Funds (State-operated insurance program) and additional government subsidies. Donors should feel confident that, as always, any and all contributions will be used as intended. Successful completion of the turn-around will insure that HMO remains at the forefront of research, teaching and clinical practice in Jerusalem, in Israel and globally”.
The Desert-Mountain Annual Conference was held December 14, 15 & 16, 2013 at the Lodge on The Desert here in Tucson. Our Hadassah Southern Arizona Chapter hosted this conference which was attended by Hadassah members from throughout the eight State Desert-Mountain Region. Ellen Hershkin, National Coordinator for the PRAZE Division (Programming, Advocacy, Zionism & Education), was the keynote speaker. Melissa Karachalias, head of National Hadassah’s Member & Unit Services, also attended.
Cathy Olswing was installed as the new Desert-Mountain Region President at a banquet held on Sunday evening. Cathy (a member of our Hadassah Southern Arizona Chapter) gave an inspiring speech using the conference theme of “Choose Where To Make Your Impact.” Cathy noted that “Hadassah has always been and still is a grassroots organization. Build it and they will come. Grow it and they will believe. Reach out and they will respond. Let’s make our impact together.”
Our chapter received five “Goals to Success” awards in the following categories: Education, Programs, Bulletin/E-News, Bright Ideas and Membership. We reached our Tower goal of $17,000;however, fell far short of our Development/Fund Raising goal of $125,000. Please support our fundraising programs in 2014, so that our chapter will reach, and hopefully, reach our goals. We need you!
Our chapter is expanding our Membership Portfolio to include a number of committees. Please see our “Hadassah Needs You” article in this issue and see where you can be of service.
Recently, I came across an article regarding volunteering written by Elizabeth Lightfoot, an Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota School of Social Work. She found that volunteering can add years to your life — with some evidence pointing to a 22 percent reduction in mortality. How much time must you spare? A separate study found that seniors who gave 100 hours or more annually were 28 percent less likely to die from any cause than their less philanthropic counterparts. But, that’s not a magic number --- it could be 75 hours or 125 hours. The important thing is that you’re volunteering regularly.
With that said, I’m hoping that all of you, who want to live longer, will plan on more volunteer hours for Hadassah!
Chag Pesach Sameach!