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Stay up to date about all things Yad LaKashish.

Corona Updates

On March 15, 2020, in compliance with regulations issued by the Ministry of Health to prevent the spread of Corona Virus and safeguard our vulnerable elderly population, we temporarily closed our doors for the first time in nearly 60 years of operation.

For almost 3 full months, our workshops were shuttered but we remained committed to ensuring their physical and emotional well being.

On June 7th, we reopened our workshops, having modified the work-spaces to ensure social distancing and purchasing the required safety and hygiene products to safeguard both the artisans and professional staff. To further protect our elderly, we closed our dining room and now provide nutritious lunches in take-away containers.

During the Corona closure nearly half a million NIS was distributed to the elderly as we maintained the Monthly Stipend Program. Knowing that their financial support has not been affected gave them tremendous relief.

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Our Visit to the Knesset

Did you know the Israeli Parliament was founded on Tu B'shvat?

Last week we were honored to take our seniors on a day trip to tour the Parliament.

“Do Knesset members have to know Hebrew?” was one of the many questions that was asked during our tour.

The tour, organized in three languages, Russian, Amharic and Hebrew, opened the trip to all our elderly. The visit included viewing the Plenary Hall where the members of Knesset sit and vote, enjoying the numerous paintings by Marc Chagall that adorn the hallways, and being briefed on the history of the Israeli government.

What a great way to prepare for the upcoming elections in March.

Tu B'shvat sameach and happy birthday to the Knesset!

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Hanukkah Update

Thank you for joining us  in our efforts this past year. Your support and encouragement ensured that Yad LaKashish continued to empower the needy elderly of Jerusalem. 

Whether you visited our artistic workshops in Jerusalem, shopped in our online store, or helped support our many programs, you made an impact.

We hope to see you in Jerusalem soon!

Read our full newsletter here.

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A Visit to Yad LaKashish

Brittany, aka The Sweet Wanderlust is a travel and food blogger who has spent the last few years as a digital nomad.

During one of her recent visits to Israel, we were happy to host her for a tour of Yad LaKashish!

“On my second to last day in Jerusalem, a friend’s ice cream tote bag (pictured below) caught my eye. When she invited me to meet the men and women at Yad LaKashish who make tote bags, jewelry, and other gifts, I jumped at the chance. At Yad LaKashish, I witnessed deep friendships that cross cultural lines, I found men and women who were proud of their work (and rightly so!)— many of them invited me over to take a closer look at their craft, and I heard stories of hardship and stories of beauty that has come from overcoming life’s most difficult challenges.

I am so grateful I had the opportunity to meet the creative and welcoming community of empowered men and women who are aging gracefully and living a life full of purpose. Thank you Yad LaKashish for creating this moving opportunity. “
-Brittany Kulick

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Happy New Year!

We hope you enjoy our Rosh Hashanah newsletter.

Click here to read more. 

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Paper Making Training Course

Last week, we began our very first paper making training course! Our Bookbinding instructor taught Michael, Simeon, and Mark how to make recycled paper.

Once they learned the basics of paper making Dinka, who is one of our experienced paper makers, helped them continue to practice and perfect their skills. Although Dinka is from Ethiopia and does not speak Russian they were able to use body language and modeling to overcome language barriers.

Next month, we plan to teach another group of bookbinders how to make recycled paper!

Click here to see some of our recycled paper products.


Lasting Friendship

Solomon and Leonid, two of our metalworkers, have been friends since they were young professionals working in a factory in Uzbekistan. They both studied electrical engineering and Solomon also has a second degree in economics.

Solomon made Aliyah in 1998 and Leonid in 1999. Unknown to each other, they moved to the same neighborhood.  Leonid and his wife joined Yad LaKashish 13 years ago. He is an expert metalworker; creates beautiful hamsot (decorative hands) and jewelry.

In 2013, Leonid encouraged Solomon to join him in the Metal Workshop. Now, Solomon, Leonid and Leonid's wife Sofia walk to the bus together every day, over a kilometer each way. 

Their instructor, Adina, says, “Whenever I say it's hot out they always remind me that it isn’t hot here. They tell me Uzbekistan was hot- over 40 degrees Celsius. And when it’s cold, they remind me that it isn’t cold here. Siberia was cold, this is paradise.” 

May they be healthy and enjoy many more days of friendship!

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Celebrating Diversity

Born in Jerusalem in 1947, Chaled began working at Yad LaKashish in 1988 following injury from a serious car accident. “The social worker referred me to Yad LaKashish so that I wouldn’t be alone every day without anything to do. I was sure I wouldn’t last a week. I never dreamed that I would stay for 30 years!”

Chaled appreciates the diversity of Yad LaKashish. Currently, he is celebrating Ramadan and enjoys sharing his customs with others in the Ceramics workshop.

“Just like many of the people here, I observe fast days. We also follow the lunar calendar, but without a leap year. At the end of this month we will celebrate a big three day holiday and I will go visit my family but otherwise, it’s all like usual.”

Chaled appreciates the warm, positive atmosphere at Yad LaKashish and feels accomplishment and satisfaction at work each day. Chaled firmly believes that “keeping your mind and hands active is the key to wellness.” In the ceramics workshop, Chaled’s superior technical skills and meticulous work made him the perfect person to provide quality control for items before painting.

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Visiting Elisabetta

Bat Or and Eran are part of a joint program with a middle school in Jerusalem’s city center. Every Thursday, four students from the 8th grade class come to volunteer at Yad LaKashish.

As part of the program, we place special emphasis on creating inter-generational connections between the elderly artisans and the student volunteers.

Bat Or and Eran volunteer in the Textiles, Appliqué and Children’s World departments. When asked what is most meaningful for them about their volunteering, they noted that they enjoy building relationships with the people in the departments.

Eran is happy to help with the problems they have with their phones.

Bat Or, spoke about the difficulty she feels when people are sick and must miss work for long periods of time. She created a strong bond with Elisabetta early on in her volunteering but Elisabetta has been home sick for some time.

Before every holiday we visit the elderly who have not come for long periods of time because of illness or recovery from a fall and present them with a holiday gift. The pair expressed a desire to visit Elisabetta and so our social coordinator invited them to join her during her trip to see Elisabetta.

The students prepared a blessing for her and brought chocolate with them. The meeting was very moving, Elisabetta was extremely happy to see them and called them “my students.”

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New lease on life - Jerusalem Post Article

Click here to read the full article:

Pesach 2019 Newsletter

We hope you enjoy reading our Pesach 2019 Newsletter which offers an inside look at the production of our new Seder plate as well as life advice from one of our elderly artisans. 

Click here to read our Pesach newsletter!

Once Upon a Seder Plate

Purim at Yad LaKashish

This Purim, we hosted over 120 students from three different institutions! We had a wonderful time dancing, eating hamentaschen, and celebrating the holiday with our visitors. Thank you to Solomon Schechter Westchester, Yeshivat Orayta, and Young Jerusalem for spending your Purim morning with us.

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B'nai Mitzvah Projects, Am Shalom


After visiting Yad LaKashish, Ari and Noah G. chose to raise money for us by selling our handmade products in their home community.

Lucas F. asked that donations in honor of his Bar Mitzvah be made Yad LaKashish. After his Bar Mitzvah, Lucas came to visit us and was able to meet and get to know the deserving elderly artisans that his efforts supported.

Mia Z. visited Yad LaKashish three years before her Bat Mitzvah and knew from that day that she wanted to use her Bat Mitzvah Tzedaka Project to help support the elderly artisans. Mia sold products from Yad LaKashish at her synagogue and donated the money she made to Yad LaKashish in support of the Pesach bonus given out to each of the elderly artisans to help them celebrate the holiday with dignity. 

We are inspired by the dedication and hard work of these 4 Am Shalom B'nai Mitzvah students. Thank you for supporting us and sharing our mission with your home community. 

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