Playing the drums at Hadassah Neurim. Photo by Peleg Asulin, Hadassah Neurim.
Nothing is as enticing as an
unopened package. The teens at Hadassah-Neurim Youth Aliyah Village excitedly
gathered in the social hall around the pile of packages from Operation Music Aid International. They
anxiously awaited the arrival of one of Israel’s hottest music groups, Mayumana,
which was coming to open the packages and perform with them.
Operation Music Aid gives at-risk Israeli
children in three Hadassah-supported youth villages the opportunity to grow
through music. Through efforts coordinated by Hadassah and American music store
owners Ethel Anne Chorney and George Hauer, instruments were sent to children
in need at Ramat Hadassah Szold, Hadassah Neurim and Meir Shfeyah youth
Mayumana arrived, led by founder Eylon Nuphar,
who brought her parents, Sima and Aryeh Rolnick, to the celebration. The couple
had met at Hadassah-Neurim in the 60s.
The time had come. The kids and Mayumana performers unwrapped harmonicas, drums, keyboards and
electric guitars- instruments specifically chosen by Chorney and Hauer.
Building Confidence Through Music
For decades, Hadassah has worked with Youth
Aliyah to provide at-risk children in Israel with a safe home and environment.
When Chorney- a life member of Hadassah- and Hauer, who both have experience
using music for recovery and personal growth, learned about the program, they
knew they had an opportunity to provide these children with a way to build
positive self-awareness and confidence through music. The couple spent countless
hours researching, working with manufacturers to obtain the best possible
equipment, negotiating special shipping rates with El Al and spending time
working with Israeli customs officials to help the process move as smoothly as
“Women like Ethel Anne Chorney are the reason Hadassah is able to make an
impact on lives across the globe, and we are proud to be able to call such an
outstanding and selfless woman one of our life members,” said Marcie Natan,
National President of Hadassah. “When Chorney and Hauer approached us about a
partnership, we knew this would be an amazing opportunity to improve the lives
of these children.”
After months of preparation, Operation Music Aid International – Project Israel
delivered five electronic drum kits, one electronic keyboard and stand, four
Djembe drums, five guitars, 40 harmonicas, assorted sheet music and six power
adaptors. “When I learned about these children in the Hadassah-sponsored Youth
Aliyah villages, I knew that George and I had the ability to truly make a
difference through music,” said Chorney. “Having the opportunity to make this
dream a reality and provide these children with a way to brighten their lives
is a something I will never forget.”
“I thank you and, most of all, the women of Hadassah,”
said an emotional Natan Biton, Director of Hadassah-Nuerim.
Youth Aliyah villages provide a safety net of services—food, shelter, education and love—to immigrants and at-risk Israeli children from poor or abusive homes in Israel. With guidance, nurturing, and first-rate instruction, students learn the skills they need to succeed in modern-day Israel.