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When Mr. Herschel Feigenbaum arrived in Israel in the 1950's after surviving the Holocaust, he understood that our children are our future. In memory of the over one and a half million Jewish children who perished, Mr. Feigenbaum founded EFRAT, to increase the Jewish birthrate in Israel.
Mr. Feigenbaum’s dream took form almost forty years ago, when a woman, who had brought her son to Dr. Schussheim for a routine checkup, said, “Thanks to you, my son is alive today.”
Dr. Schussheim had no idea what this woman was referring to.
She explained, “Before I realized that I was pregnant, I underwent a series of X-rays. Obviously I was concerned about the possible affects on my unborn child. I consulted several doctors and each of them advised me to have an abortion, explaining that I would give birth to a severely disabled child.
“Dr. Schussheim, you were the only one to disagree. You explained that according to the most recent medical research, X-rays do not affect the fetus. You urged me not to abort my unborn child. I listened to you, and gave birth to a healthy boy – my son.”
“Her story changed my life,” explains Dr. Schussheim, formerly a senior surgeon in Shaarei Zedek and Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospitals. “I studied medicine to save lives. Here, with this simple piece of advice, I had saved this boy’s life and the life of his children and grandchildren.”
Since 1977, Dr. Eli J. Schussheim has made Mr. Feigenbaum’s dream a reality. Together with a group of dedicated volunteers and professionals, EFRAT provides thousands of women with accurate information enabling them to make an educated choice. As a result, over 57,000 children are alive today.