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Hadassah Bat Ami Social Workers Visit the Bay Area

Fourth of July weekend, four social workers from the Hadassah Bat Ami Center, which treats victims of sexual assault and domestic violence, met with Hadassah Chapters of the Central Pacific Coast Region. The Bat Ami social workers were in California to present a paper about their work at the innovative Bat Ami Center for the International Conference held in Los Angeles.

Hadassah's Bat Ami Center is the only Rape Crisis Center in Jerusalem. It's staff are bilingual and bicultural. The Center serves 300 victims of domestic violence and sexual assault per year. When a patient arrives at Hadassah hospital and domestic violence or sexual abuse is suspected or reported, the highly trained team from Bat Ami consisting of doctors, nurses, social workers and interpreters is called into action 24/7. The team works with the victims to make sure that they are safe, provides the patient with resources and services as well as conducts a thorough medical examination to establish forensic evidence for possible prosecution. If the victims have no where safe to go, they stay at Hadassah hospital until a safe shelter can be found. The focus of the Center is on the comprehensive and coordinated care of the victim above all else.

These talented and dedicated women told the Santa Cruz Chapter of Hadassah that the Hadassah Bat Ami Center was part of their identity. "It's not just a work place," said Senior Social Worker Noa Shemesh.

Liz Alpert, Anastasia Steinberg and Sandra Warren from the Santa Cruz chapter entertained the social workers, taking them around the beautiful sites along the Pacific Ocean. The next day, Judi Finkelstein, from the Marin Chapter, awed them with a car ride to the Muir Woods redwood forest and then wineries in the Sonoma Valley. Sunday evening, the San Francisco Chapter hosted the women, where they talked extensively about the significant work they do at Hadassah hospital. The Jerusalem tourists had a splendid time in Northern California and expressed their appreciation for the welcome from the Central Pacific Coast Region.

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