There for those who are there for us protecting the Jewish Homeland
412 Friends of Zahal aims to show support for Israel with our appreciation to the soldiers that sacrifice to keep it safe.
For many years, a group of private citizens from Pittsburgh led by Sylvia Robinson, created the American Friends of Israeli War Disabled program (DBA 412 Friends of Zahal) for the purpose of strengthening the connection between Israel and the American Jewish Community. Every spring, we host a group of disabled Israeli war veterans who are selected by the Disabled Israeli War Veteran’s Organization. בית הלוחם
The overseas delegation program, of which 412 Friends of Zahal is one example, had its source in a small Jewish community in Geneva, Switzerland in 1973. They extended an invitation to 30 wounded Israeli veterans to be their guests in Geneva so they could rest and gather strength after their injury and long period of rehabilitation. The warm and long lasting relationships forged from this experience inspired by many similar efforts from Jewish communities all over the world.
Canada, Europe and the United States host numerous delegations on an annual basis.
This program has been instrumental in strengthening relationships between Jewish communities worldwide as well as strengthening the injured veterans, who come away knowing their sacrifices were not made in vain.
The Zahal Disabled Veterans Organization (ZDVO) and Beit Halochem represents approximately 50,000 disabled war veterans of the IDF (Israel Defense Forces). Founded in 1949, it is the only officially recognized group representing disabled veterans.
It was founded with the purpose of improving the quality of life for the disabled safeguarding their legal rights and supporting their interests through legislation and economic measures and rehabilitating the veterans by establishing sports and rehab centers (Beit Halochem) that offer a variety of programs.
Beit Halochem today consists of five facilities in Tel Aviv, Haifa, Jerusalem, Narhariya, and Beer Sheva. These rehabilitation centers offer the disabled veteran a variety of sports and cultural programs which help reintegrate them back into the stream of life.
Why 412 Friends of Zahal
Thousands of IDF soldiers are wounded every single year.
412 Friends of Zahal's work is built upon helping aid and alleviate physical and mental injuries that soldiers suffer following their service in the IDF. In addition to a multitude of physical injuries, thousands of IDF veterans suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our programming is designed to enable our delegations to enjoy stress-free experiences in America.