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A Volunteering Vacation

28 July, 2013

Dr. Steven Bachrach, a Pediatric Neurodevelopment Disabilities specialist from Philadelphia, on vacation in Israel, chose to spend his time volunteering at ALYN Hospital. He is sharing his vast knowledge and experience in the field with ALYN staff, children and their parents. "I help children and their parents focus on the positive – what the child is able to do instead of the negative – what the child is unable to do" says Dr. Bachrach.

"This is a wonderful present for the summer holiday" says Dr. Maurit Beeri, ALYN's Director General. "Many volunteers help us throughout the year but Dr. Bacharach's contribution to the hospital surpasses and touches us anew each time".  

"I want to contribute and I hope what I am doing helps" says Dr. Bachrach. 25 years of experience as a world renowned Pediatric Neurodevelopment Disabilities specialist hide behind this modesty. Dr. Bachrach's currently works at Du Pont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Delaware.

Dr. Bachrach has been spending his time in ALYN doing developmental evaluations of the children in "Shachar" – ALYN's Rehabilitation Educational Medical Day Care Center. "The parents are very pleased. I try to help them look at the positive – what their child is able to do even though sometimes my findings are less optimistic – it's important that the parents hear the information from someone experienced in the field".

When asked about the leading Pediatric Rehabilitation facility in Israel where his knowledge and experience may be of use, a cardiologist friend, who happens to know Dr. Beeri ALYN's director General, recommended Dr. Bachrach come to ALYN.

Friends in America are surprised when Dr. Bachrach tells them that half of the clients treated in ALYN are Arabs: "I’m happy that my stories about real life in Israel contribute too. I see myself as a representative of Israel and it is a great honor to be able to contribute to the country and especially to the children".  

"Children with complex issues needing treatment from a multidisciplinary staff including a variety of professions are seen. I came to ALYN to give my perspective and to recommend more ways we can help the children." He has only good things to say about the ALYN staff: "staff members are very warm and willing to share. You can see they work from the heart. There is no other facility like ALYN in Israel. I think ALYN and the important work done there are worth knowing". 

Dr. Bachrach is the father of 4 and grandfather of 6, half of whom live in Israel. He himself has not been able to fulfill his dream and move to Israel. This is Dr. Bachrach's second year volunteering in ALYN. Last fall Dr. Bachrach was in ALYN when the "wheels of love" riders, including fellow members of his home congregation "Lower Merion Synagogue", ended their ride at ALYN.  "Attending  the closing ceremony of  the 2012 wheels of love Bar Mitzvah ride and seeing other people from my community participate and contribute to ALYN's children was exciting".  

When his time at ALYN ends Dr. Bachrach will go back to America but he promises to come back to ALYN next year and continue to help as many children as he can.

ALYN Hospital is one of the world's leading specialists in pediatric rehabilitation and is the only facility of its kind in Israel. ALYN specializes in diagnosis and the rehabilitation of infants, children and adolescents who are suffering from physical disabilities.  Children and adolescents with motor, sensory, respiratory, communication, cognitive and behavioral deficiencies are provided expert multidisciplinary treatment with the goal of rehabilitation and return to community life as quickly as possible.