“Yad Sarah (Hebrew: יד שרה) is the largest national volunteer organization in Israel. Employing over 6,000 volunteers, with a salaried staff of 150, Yad Sarah serves over 350,000 clients each year. It is best known for its free loans of over 244,000 pieces of medical and rehabilitative home-care equipment annually, enabling sick, disabled, elderly and recuperating patients to live at home. This saves the country’s economy an estimated $320 million in hospital fees and long-term care costs each year.
According to an independent survey, one out of every two Israeli families has been helped by Yad Sarah. The organization serves Jews, Christians, Muslims and Druze, as well as tourists with disabilities. Its menu of free or nominal-fee services include lending of medical and rehabilitative equipment, oxygen service, wheelchair transportation, national emergency alarm system, services for the homebound, legal aid for the elderly, geriatric dentistry, day rehabilitation centers, a play center for special needs children, and an education and recreation club for retirees. Yad Sarah receives no government funding but relies on donations to meet its $23 million operating budget. It exports its expertise to developing countries and has established similar models in various countries. Yad Sarah is a recipient of the Israel Prize and has been awarded advisory status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council.”