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Zichron Menachem is the Israeli association for the support of children with cancer and their families. It offers immediate, practical and long-term solutions to the wide range of problems that must be overcome from the moment that a child has been diagnosed with cancer. It also provides support to children who have a parent living with cancer. The organization is headquartered in Jerusalem and operates in all major Israeli hospitals with pediatric oncology/hematology wards.
Zichron Menachem was established in 1990 in memory of Menachem Ehrental, an Israeli boy who battled cancer for over 14 years - from age 18 months until his young death. Drawing on their vast experience as parents of a cancer-stricken child, Menachem's parents, together with family and friends, founded Zichron Menachem as a nonprofit organization aimed at easing the suffering of young cancer patients and their families.
By 2006 Zichron Menachem has helped thousands of children and families. It has an extensive network of hundreds of professionally trained volunteers in every part of Israel.
All Zichron Menachem programs, activities and facilities are offered free-of-charge to children stricken with cancer, and their families, regardless of their religion, ethnic origin or socio-economic status.
Its programs include:
- Support groups for parents, bereaved parents and children
- Big brothers and sisters
- Permanent hospital staffing
- Three annual adventure camps
- Weekly parties
- Fun days
- Reservoir of blood products
- Hair wigs for cancer patients, made from hair donated by volunteers
- Lending library
- Psycho-social and professional support
The Zichron Menachem Day Center in Jerusalem is an educational, recreational and rehabilitation center dedicated for the exclusive use of children with cancer and their families. Many of these children have suppressed immune systems due to chemotherapy, and in order to protect their already fragile health, they cannot always attend school and social events. The center offers these children a clean environment where they continue their studies, undergo specific therapies and enjoy a wide range of fun and entertaining activities. Music, computers, art, rocketry, sports, photography and journalism are but a few of the many extracurricular activities offered to the children. The Day Center offers these same activities to the sick child’s brothers and sisters during the afternoon and early evening hours.
In recognition of its humanitarian activities, Zichron Menachem has been awarded with awards, including:
- Israel President's Prize for Volunteers
- Israel Prime Minister's Child Protector Award
- Israel Health Minister's Prize for Volunteers (2000, Chaim and Miri Ehrental, 2006, Zohar Hala)
- The Mayor of Jerusalem’s Citation for Volunteers
- Order of Orange-Nassau Knight's Medal from Queen Beatrix (I) of the Netherlands (Mrs. Borie Maarsen)
Zichron Menachem is a registered non-profit, charitable organization in Israel, the USA and the United Kingdom. Friends of Zichron Menachem organizations and committees in the USA ('The Children's Bridge of Zichron Menachem'), UK and Europe help support Zichron Menachem's programs, activities and facilities.