Thursday, January 2, 2014

Celebrating Coexistence: “Settlement” Doctor makes house calls in Palestinian Villages

Throughout Israel, there are everyday heroes- men and women working quietly behind the scenes to build bridges between people in the region, because they know that the surest path to peace is  not boycotts and isolation,  but closer economic, cultural and personal connections between Palestinians and Israelis.

From The Jewish Press:

Dr. Yitz Glick from Efrat drives into the Wadi Nis Palestinian village. He is greeted by the locals with smiles and warm hellos. “There’s the doctor,” says one woman to another as Dr. Yitzchak Glick lowers his car window to say hello.

To the villagers of Wadi Nis and six other Palestinian villages in the Gush Etzion region, the kippah-wearing Dr. Glick is a familiar and welcome face. This U.S. born doctor, who made aliyah with his parents in 1974, makes personal house calls every week, providing medical treatment free of charge to Palestinian patients

When Dr. Glick sees Mohammed, a construction worker he treated for injuries from a fall from a building a couple of years ago, he stops and gets out of the car. Wearing a red and white keffiyeh headdress, Mohammed greets Dr. Glick with a hug and the two converse like old friends. “The people here don’t forget what I and other doctors from Efrat have done,” Glick says. “From treating expectant mothers and providing free medicine to saving lives, you become part of their families.”

The connection runs so deep, that the Arab villagers have alerted Efrat authorities on several occasions against terror cells that were approaching the Jewish enclave....

“There have always been good neighborly relations between many of the local Palestinians and the community of Efrat,” says Dr. Glick. “In the medical field, doctors are used to treating patients from all walks of life. Here in Gush Etzion, it’s no different – everyone is treated with respect and accorded quality medical care,” Glick adds. ...

Dr. Glick founded the Efrat Emergency Medical Center and has been volunteering as the center’s  medical director for nearly 14 years. The medical center provides a wide range of medical services to both Israelis and Palestinians in Gush Etzion.   Dr. Glick received the Presidential Award for Volunteerism from President Shimon Peres in 2009 and the Moskowitz Prize for Zionism in 2012.

Read the article here

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