Better healthcare for Palestinian kids – thanks to Australian interfaith group

May 24, 2013 by  
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Hundreds of Palestinian children in the West Bank and Gaza Strip will have access to improved healthcare thanks to a unique multi-faith partnership based in Australia.

Ron Finkel, President, Hadassah Australia; Bob Mitchell, CEO, Anglican Overseas Aid; Professor Eitan Kerem, Chairman, Dept. of Pediatrics, Hadassah Hospital Jerusalem   The occasion was the signing of the TriPartite agreement in November 2012 between the 3 organisations to create what we now refer to as Project Rozana.

Ron Finkel, President, Hadassah Australia;   Bob Mitchell, CEO, Anglican Overseas Aid;
Professor Eitan Kerem, Chairman, Dept. of Pediatrics, Hadassah Hospital Jerusalem
The occasion was the signing of the TriPartite agreement in November 2012 between the three organisations to create what we now refer to as Project Rozana.

Project Rozana – a partnership between Anglican Overseas Aid, the Hadassah Australia Foundation and the world-renowned Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem – will be launched this Friday in Melbourne.

In May 2012, four-year-old Rozana Abu Ghannam fell from a ninth-floor balcony in her village near Ramallah, sustaining life-threatening injuries. Her mother insisted that Rozana be taken to Hadassah Hospital, which is acknowledged for providing the best pediatric intensive care in the Middle East.

Rozana is now fully recovered and attending school. Also speaking will be Ron Finkel, president of the Hadassah Australia Foundation, alongside Reverend Doctor Philip Freier, Anglican Archbishop of Melbourne and president of Anglican Overseas Aid.

Project Rozana has been endorsed by the Palestinian Authority Health Ministry. In an email to Ron Finkel on May 13, Health Minister Dr Hani Abdeen wrote: “Your interest in providing any help possible, to bring the two sides in conflict – Palestinian and Israeli – through health paradigms is something I subscribe for and support without any reservation.”

Finkel said: “As far as I am aware this will be the first time that Australians will be able to make fully tax-deductible donations to an overseas aid program where the fundraising is done jointly by an Anglican and Jewish national organisation; the funds are deployed exclusively in Israel at an iconic Israeli institution and the beneficiaries of the programs are Palestinian.”

A former president of the Australasian Union of Jewish Students back in the 1970s, Finkel, also a former vice-president of the State Zionist Council of Victoria, added: “We are very proud to be pioneering this project; it sits squarely with the mission statement of Hadassah Hospital.”

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