A group of 64 high-school-aged teens from Panama, escorted by Pnina Sharon, Head Emergency Room Nurse at Hadassah Hospital-Ein Kerem, were exhilarated to see the advanced services and technology Hadassah has for treating victims of terror in its Trauma Unit.

The teens, members of an independent Jewish youth movement called “Maccabi Panama,” had the opportunity to meet Ms. Sharon when she traveled to Panama in October to be a featured speaker at the Hadassah Panama-sponsored symposium on trauma. “It was a heartwarming experience to show the students around,” she said, “especially nice to point out things that I had told them about when I was in Panama. They were so receptive and it was wonderful to observe their warm connection to Israel and Hadassah Hospital.”

Pinhas Lin, the Israeli shaliach (emissary) to Panama, who brings teens to Israel for a month of touring each year, notes that it’s important for the Panamanian community to see the projects they are supporting. Maccabi Panama emphasizes the cultivation of leadership. By bringing the young people to see the projects, it makes it easier for them all to work together for Israel.

Particularly poignant was the fact that shortly after the teens viewed the Judy and Sidney Swartz Center for Emergency Medicine and the Trauma Unit, there was a suicide bombing in the Israeli town of Dimona, vividly establishing for them the reality that made the state-of-the-art trauma unit so crucial in Israel. This was the first time Hadassah was on the Maccabi itinerary, a direct result of the bonds forged between Hadassah’s health professionals and the Panamanian Jewish community through Hadassah Panama’s initiatives. A second group of Maccabi teens will be touring Hadassah this month!