NEW YORK, NY, October 31, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Mr. Gartenhause will be the recipient of the coveted Volunteer Award of Excellence at the 2014 Aleh Foundation Awards Gala to be held at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City on Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at 6:30 p.m.---
Mr. Gartenhause founded and created the volunteer project in Aleh's first major center located in Bnei Brak, Israel. He was attracted to the first Aleh Facility located on 53 Kehilat Yakov when he was doing his military duties as supervisor of the Nafat Shomer Military Base that was at the time adjacent to the first Aleh Center in Israel who serviced approximately fourteen children. Being that they did not have accommodations for space and chairs to meet with parents and friends in the evenings, Mr. Gartenhouse accommodated those meetings for Aleh's staff and parents at the military base. Bar Ilan University, located next to Aleh and Nafat Shomer also had a dormitory as well as a conference room that Mr. Gartenhouse secured for Aleh meetings when the military base was not accessible.
During his involvement with Aleh, he began to assist in bathing those children whose parents had no other way to do these tasks or the appropriate facilities at home. He ultimately began recruiting other volunteers and trained them techniques of connecting with special children who are unable to communicate. In the course of his 28 year mission as Aleh grew to larger facilities http://www.alehfoundationusa.org/PRG_eqiupment.html he developed a roster of volunteers who he coordinated on a weekly basis at all hours of day and night.
Mr. Gartenhouse shared a few of his poignant sentiments. "One young couple from Haifa who were married for 5 years and were unable to have children decided to become volunteers in their quest for merits, and a need to be fulfilled. They volunteered on a regular basis and became attached to some of the most vulnerable children in Aleh. Precisely ten months after their commitment to volunteer at Aleh they were blessed with a healthy baby, Mr. Gartenhouse said."
A different young man who was the caretaker for his grand father for ten years shared with Mr. Gartenhause that since his grand father passed on he feels a void. He immediately recruited him to do service at Aleh and became so attached to some of the children, that he even brought them home for weekends and holidays, and also attracted countless others to volunteer.
"The trick of a successful volunteer is to connect and to build a loving trusting relationship, said Mr. Gartenhause." He encourages each volunteerto give a good night kiss after tucking these special children to bed. He was always lavish in praising the wives of the volunteers thereby encouraging the family of the volunteer to be proud when a husband or parent gives of his time at Aleh, as opposed to being resentful.
In addition to his volunteer work in Aleh, Mr. Gartenhouse volunteered for Ezer Metzion overseeing transporting patients to hospitals and providing lifesaving equipment to many severely ill patients. He was also a successful and beloved teacher at the Bobov School in Bnei Brak. Mr. Gartenhouse received many accolades and honors from several municipalities in Israel as well as from the Israeli Parliament.
He is very proud of the work he has done and even more so that his son, Ben-Zion has taken over his duties when he decided three years ago to move to the United States.
Rabbi Braun suggested he should inaugurate a similar volunteer program in the United States once an Aleh Center opens here. He responded that he would be delighted! Rabbi Shlomo Braun is the Founder and Director of the Aleh Foundation located at 5317 13th Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11219. It is only due to the energetic and successful public relations and fund raising affords of the Aleh Foundation in the USA, during the past 30 years, that Aleh is Israel was able to become Israel's foremost provider of the care and treatment of the severely disabled children. Aleh's spacious, ultra-modern dormitories, treatment centers, special education schools and occupational training schools of Aleh house and treat hundreds of special children in four cities in Israel. Today Aleh operates a system of spacious, modern facilities throughout Israel that house and care for more than 700 children with special needs. Plans are underway to build our latest project,http://www.alehfoundationusa.org/PRG_school.html the Special Education School, which is presently in its final construction stage at Pardes Katz, a 10 minute-drive from Tel Aviv. It will have the capacity to service 200 children, with special education classes ranging from kindergarten through high school. It will also include an Olympic-sized pool to provide daily hydrotherapy treatments. This school will be a role model for the entire world. Your support can help make a difference in expediting the completion of the project; allowing them to enjoy special education classes that include computer-assisted learning tools with specialized software, cognitive games, awareness of seasons and holidays, and various group therapies. Because of dedicated friends and supporters throughout the states Aleh Foundation was able to forward more than a quarter million dollars ($275,000) this year to Aleh's facilities in Israel. Please join friends of Aleh Foundation in recognizing the heroic efforts of Mr. Gartenhouse at the Awards Dinner on May 21, 2014. Call the headquarters at 800-317ALEH to get involved or visit the website at http://www.alehfoundationusa.org
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