Last month, we had the pleasure of hosting evenings of tribute across four different venues, bringing together approximately 1200 volunteers and their spouses.
The anticipation leading up to these events was palpable, as it marked the return of a cherished tradition that was put on hold due to the pandemic. Volunteers, both seasoned and new, gathered from all corners of the country, representing various positions within our organization, such as management, mentoring, consulting, and guidance. The excitement was contagious, and it was challenging to transition from the warm reception to the engaging content-filled meetings.
During his opening speech, Zvika Goldberg, the CEO of Paamonim, emphasized the socio-economic challenges faced by households in Israel. He highlighted the significant increase of 40% in applications to our organization from individuals in the lower and middle classes who are grappling with the rising cost of living and interest rates. He acknowledged the vital need for our organization and the importance of addressing the economic aspect in every social endeavor, whether it be within nonprofits or the public sector.
Zvika concluded his remarks with heartfelt gratitude: “We will overcome these challenges thanks to our volunteers. Your knowledge, experience, and abilities are essential, but above all, it is your special spirit and human depth that truly make a difference. For that, we would like to express our deepest gratitude.”
We recognize that many organizations possess valuable assets such as knowledge and professionalism, but what sets our organization apart is the exceptional value and depth provided by each and every one of our volunteers. Our fundamental identity is rooted in the spirit of volunteering and the inherent value it brings.
Studies on volunteering have shown that it not only provides a sense of value and security to the volunteers themselves but also impacts their families. We understand that volunteering often demands precious quality time from family life.
A special thank you goes out to the spouses of our volunteers
. On behalf of Paamonim and the families we assist, we extend our heartfelt appreciation to the spouses who enable and encourage the continuation of this invaluable work.
Dorit Yamini, director of mentoring and family services at Paamonim, echoed these sentiments and added:
“Dear volunteers, I want to express my gratitude for the spirit of volunteerism that radiates within you. Your unwavering dedication, determination, and resilience in dealing with complex situations are truly admirable. Your optimistic spirit, partnership, and trust in the mission of Paamonim are invaluable.”
Addressing the spouses, Dorit continued: “I sincerely thank you for your unwavering support, understanding, and encouragement. It is your backing from the home front that empowers your spouses to carry out their mission. Volunteering is truly a family endeavor, and we deeply appreciate your contribution.”
During the event, representatives of families who have benefited from our services also shared their stories, expressing their gratitude for the support they have received.
The highlight of the evening was an inspiring talk by Michael Ben Shitrit, who shared his remarkable life journey. Despite facing adversity as a troubled teenager, dropping out of school, and working odd jobs, Michael found his path to success. Through military service, he gained the opportunity to pursue higher education, eventually becoming a lecturer and a high school principal. He went on to complete marathons, two Iron Man challenges, and the Ma’oz fellowship course.
Michael’s inspiring story serves as a testament to the power of faith in oneself and the endless possibilities that can be achieved.
We would like to extend our deepest thanks to all the volunteers, their spouses, and the participants who made these evenings of tribute so special. It is your commitment and dedication that fuel our organization’s mission and bring hope to countless individuals and families.