Hadassah is one of the oldest Jewish organizations in America. Founded on the idea of a volunteer led group, Hadassah has long been the example of grassroots organizing and building a strong volunteer base. Founded in 1912, Hadassah has worked for 99 years to bring health care to Israel and fight against social injustice abroad and at home. However, so much of their work has been behind the scenes, people are unaware of the amazing work being done right here in Boston.

April 21 was the dedication of the Marlene Greenebaum Multidisciplinary Diagnostic Breast Center at Hadassah University Hospital in Ein Kerem. Inspired by a panel discussion at the national conference, originally created and led by the Boston chapter of Hadassah, Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum pledged over $1 million to build this new center with one condition: that it would be finished by Passover of 2011. April 13, five days before Passover, the center treated its first patients.

Dr. Sella, one of the original panelists the Greenebaum’s heard at the national conference, spoke at the dedication. “This is a festive day for women in Jerusalem and Israel. It will change the way breast cancer is diagnosed in this country, and I will do my best to make this happen. Our message is that there is hope at the end of the tunnel for those suffering from breast cancer, and that from the first moment of diagnosis, we can provide strength and courage.” This is a message woman everywhere can appreciate.

The Boston Chapter of Hadassah continues to create inspirational events right here at home. May 19 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is the annual Woman of Distinction Gala, this year honoring Nancy Falchuk and M.K. Dalia Itzik. Mrs. Falchuk is the National President of Hadassah who originally hails from Boston, serving as Hadassah Boston Chapter President from 1985-1987. Mrs. Itzik is the chair of the Kadima party in Israel and is a past Speaker of the Knesset. She has served on various committees such as the Committee on the Status of Women, the Education and Culture Committee, and was a chairperson for the Special Committee for Research and Scientific Technological Development.

Both of these women exemplify the mission of Hadassah: to promote advances in health care, education and a love of Israel.

Mrs. Itzik will continue her visit with an exclusive breakfast with Wolf Greenfield P.C. the following morning. This is an exciting opportunity for Hadassah members to have a candid discussion with the M.K. about her work and her vision for the future.

These events are only the latest in a stream of ongoing programming and work towards a healthier, more aware public both in America and in Israel. Hadassah is changing lives on a massive scale and continues to stay committed to their causes no matter the political atmosphere. This group of dedicated, strong women and men are working together for the future envisioned by Hadassah’s founding.

By Jessica Lowenthal