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Posted By: John P. Howe, III, M.D. on February 18, 2011

Labels: , Health Systems Strengthening

Our just-published Annual Report is entitled: "Hope Endures." In the past 48 hours, I saw this in faraway Israel, just an hour north of Tel Aviv, in Nazareth, where the Holy Family Hospital sits on a hill overlooking the Old City. It is a remarkable place, indeed.

I was asked by one of Project HOPE's major donors, in China and in Haiti, to visit with the Hospital's leadership -- to share observations gained from our three children's hospitals, in Poland, China and Iraq.

The Hospital is in its third century, owned by the Order of St. John of God with its headquarters in Rome. What makes it remarkable are its physicians and nurses of Christian, Jewish and Muslim faiths working side-by-side, responding to those in need. It is a model for caring and commitment among people of different religions.

Its impact was seen, and vividly so, in the Hospital's neonatal unit. I won't soon forget the little girl, now weighing just 600 grams, who was born at 26 weeks of age. She is experiencing the best of intensive care -- and individual love.

HOPE is often described as engaged in the "diplomacy of deeds." This is the work, as well, of Drs. Issaq, Harbaji, Kozlowski and Mr. Jada, the Hospital's administrator.

Every great hospital has its external champions as well, those individuals who give of their time and resources to support its mission. This is certainly seen at the Holy Family Hospital, in the name of Ami Lapidot, the Israeli General Manager of Ferring, a Swiss pharmaceutical company.

Every Saturday, Mr. Lapidot drives from Tel Aviv to Nazareth to share management expertise with the leaders of the Hospital. In addition, he made possible its new renal dialysis unit, now operating three shifts of patients each day.

Dr. Kozlowski, who is also Brother Kozlowski, the Prior for the Order, will soon visit his homeland, Poland. He looks forward to seeing HOPE's first children's hospital, University Children's Hospital, Krakow, formerly known as the Polish-American Children's Hospital.

Now in our 53rd year, this invitation for Project HOPE to share counsel with the Holy Family Hospital in Nazareth was yet another reminder that HOPE endures, throughout the world.

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