Avia was a National Service volunteer at the ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran village for two years. During her first year, Avia was a member of the staff at Beit Zohar, a home to young women with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities. During her second year of service, in keeping with her desire to influence how those who are different are received and looked upon by mainstream youth, Avia took part in the Tikkun Olam program. Tikkun Olam is a joint ADI – Ministry of Education program whose goal is to bring about a change in the way young people relate to people with disabilities and to encourage them to contribute to the community.
Avia became very attached to village residents who were like family. Even during her second National Service year, while immersed in the Tikkun Olam program, Avia found time to be with and care for the girls she was so fond of.
From the start, when Avia and her boyfriend began talking about marriage, it was clear to Avia that her good friends from Beit Zohar would be part and parcel of this important occasion in her life. The wedding, which took place in Rehovot, was honored with the presence of her friends from Beit Zohar. Days before the wedding, Inbal, Racheli, Ravital, Ayala and Sivan were excited as could be. In honor of Avia, they made special cards and gifts in their vocational workshop.
When the big day arrived, the excitement peaked. The young lADIes got dressed up, had their hair done, put on make-up and left for the wedding, accompanied by staff escorts. There wasn’t a dry eye when the entourage entered the hall and was greeted by the bride. Avia, who couldn’t help but shed tears, hugged each girl warmly – a hug filled with pure, unadulterated love. It was a hug that recognized the soul over and above the disabilities; a hug of connection that could never have taken place without ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran.
The ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran family wishes Avia and her groom a huge mazal tov and a happy and beautiful life together. We should meet again at happy occasions!