Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could mend a broken heart, literally, on Valentine’s Day?

Israel and Save a Child’s Heart

Valentine’s Day is on the way. Opportunity to show your love, perhaps mend a broken heart? A time of flowers and chocolates. Fancy dinners. Romance.

In the USA the “total spending for the holiday is expected to top $18.2 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s an average of $136.57 per person. Jewelry spending reaches a total of $4.3 billion. Americans spend $2 billion on flowers. And $1.7 billion is spent on candy.

The average Canadian plans to spend $164 on Valentine’s Day. Consumers spend $190 on jewellery, $76 on tickets to an event or show, $61 on lingerie, $40 on flowers and $18 on candy or chocolate.

And then poof it’s over. You have gained weight, developed cavities; have dying flowers and cards that make it into the recycling bin. And maybe some bling.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could mend a broken heart, literally, on Valentine’s Day?

You can. It is done in Israel all year through Save a Child’s Heart.

Since 1995, Israel-based Save a Child’s Heart has treated more than 4,400 children suffering from congenital and rheumatic heart disease. Children from around the world, 50% of them from the Palestinian Authority, Jordan, Iraq and Morocco, more than 30%  from Africa, and the remainder from Asia, Eastern Europe and the Americas are treated at the Wolfson Medical Center.

Mohammed (Palestine)

Furaha (Zanzibar)

Muslima (Ethiopia)

The ultimate goal of Save a Child’s Heart is to create centers of medical competence in developing countries so that children can be treated independently in their own communities. At the Wolfson Medical Center in Israel, Save a Child’s Heart brings medical personnel from partner sites around the globe to take part in the Save a Child’s Heart outreach training program. The annual cost to train one physician is $25,000.

Save a Child’s Heart has a fully equipped medical team that travels to its partner sites around the world in order to diagnose children, and teach and perform life-saving heart surgery. During the missions, the medical team will work alongside local personnel, who in many cases have already been trained in Israel.

Tanzania mission 2017

Imagine how many doctors could be trained and how many missions could be accomplished, how many children’s hearts repaired,  if just 1% of money spent on food and frivolity on Valentine’s Day went to Save a Child’s Heart?

Well, you don’t have to imagine. Thanks to Hasbara Fellowships Canada, you can participate on campuses across Canada, including York University, University of Toronto, Western, Queen’s, Ottawa/Carleton, McGill, University of Calgary and the University of British Columbia as well as universities across the USA that will be participating in Save a Child’s Heart Valentine’s Day tabling events the week of February 12-16.

What could be a better gift to a loved one than a donation made in their name to this organization?

Sadly there are those who would fight against a donation. People who are trained to attack Israel and anything from that comes from that country, because it is the Jewish homeland.

Late January at the University of Waterloo, in Ontario, Robert Walker, the director of Hasbara Fellowships Canada, the organization bringing the Save a Child’s heart to these campuses, was greeted by hateful people shouting hateful mantras about the people of Israel:

“Tonight I was invited by a wonderful group of students to speak at the University of Waterloo about Hasbara Fellowships Canada. Unfortunately, two minutes into my talk a group of anti-Israel students started screaming and yelling at me about Israel murdering babies and stealing land before they were escorted out. Make no mistake: most students are normal and open-minded who can hear differing opinions. But the haters and liars have not disappeared. But for everyone else: they saw the lies of the anti-Israel cause firsthand. We will never give up!”

These hateful people have probably never stepped foot in Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East and North Africa. They probably have no idea that Palestinian children, babies, are treated in Israel on a daily basis. They have never heard about the Save a Child’s Heart. All I know is that they have been programmed, like Pavlovian dogs, to spew hate, wherever and whenever they have the opportunity.

If only chocolate and flowers could cure them.

Well, we may not be able to cure these people any time soon but we can cure these children and train more doctors to save children in their home countries. Donate to Save a Child’s Heart and if you are one of the campuses February 12-16 buy your valentine a Valentine or sweet thing and share the love.



From the Ethics of the Fathers: “Rabbi Tarfon used to say, it is not incumbent upon you to complete the task, but you are not exempt from undertaking it.”