Last month, the first cycle of the Bayit Cham “Handyman” pre-rehabilitation program ended with the cooperation of the Ministry of Health, the National Insurance Institute (NII) and the Haredi Center for Vocational Training. The participants learned all types of maintenance work and are ready to move ahead on their professional journey.
The graduation ceremony was especially moving… Avishai, one of the program participants, acted as emcee. He spoke of the learning experience, the knowledge he acquired and the tremendous transformation that he underwent. Even before the start of the ceremony, the families and staff enjoyed a surprise: a spectacular exhibition in which each pair of participants presented and demonstrated one of the topics studied (carpentry, paint, locksmithing, plumbing, etc.). In a 3-minute clip, the participants were able to see and experience the course.
The ceremony was attended by all the program partners: Noa Levy – Ministry of Health’s Senior Director of Employment Rehabilitation Benefits; Nili Weizman – National Rehabilitation Coordinator in NII’s Rehabilitation Department; Ruti Halperin – Director of NII’s Rehabilitation Department in Ashdod; Rinat Re’em – Southern Region Deputy Director of Employment Rehabilitation Benefits and Gitit Cohen – Bayit Cham’s Director of Rehabilitation. Habatmo, a “Handyman” graduate, thanked the staff and partners in the name of all the trainees. With tears of joy and pride, he also thanked his family and his wife for their tremendous support. During the ceremony, certificates of appreciation were distributed to the faculty members, including the carpenters, who also wished to offer thanks for the privilege of being partners in this endeavor by giving valuable gifts to each participant.
The highlight of the ceremony was the distribution of graduation certificates, with most participants noting that this was the first time in their lives that they had experienced success and achieved their stated aims and goals.
Oren shared his personal story of courage during the ceremony. He had previous been homeless. With the help of the rehabilitation services, he moved to a hostel and from there was referred to the “Handyman” program. Oren declared to all participants, “I am not sick, I am not sick, I am coping well – heroically!”
To view the “Handyman” video (Hebrew), click here