Israel's Lone Soldiers

Sunday, March 03, 2019 |  Ariel Rudolph

"It has been an honor and a special experience for me to be able to serve in Israel as a volunteer as part of Sar-El - "The National Project for Volunteers for Israel" to meet and serve the country and her people. During the span of two months I served at three different IDF Army bases, and what I experienced and achieved during the time was meaningful to me because of Israel."

"I mainly served in kitchens and in a restaurant, on a home base and on a medical base. My responsibility on the medical base involved preparing resources and medical tools, needed in disaster areas, that have subsequently been distributed around the world."

Margaret - serving as a volunteer in the IDF.

"One group of soldiers that have especially touched me are Israel's "Lone Soldiers" because these young people have all decided to leave home, go to Israel and serve in their ancestors' land. When I read about the "Planting an olive tree and putting down roots in Israel", I immediately saw in my mind's eye the following association. For me, the olive tree symbolizes the Lonely Soldier who leaves everything behind, goes to their homeland Israel, serves there, stays there and puts down roots in Israel."

In the top photo, Maya - a lonely soldier who left everything behind in New York - plants an olive tree that does not have a plaque with her own name, but whose plaque bears "The "Lonely Soldier".

Margaret continued, "It was an extraordinarily touching and unbelievable experience for me to plant this olive tree together with Maya. For me, the olive tree called "The Lonely Soldier" is also a symbol that continually reminds me to stand up for the land of Israel, both in the spiritual and in the physical world."

"After three months volunteering, I have returned home with Israel in my heart, and I will always remain inseparable from Israel."


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