Photo: Elad Gershgoren
Rambam Medical Center
Photo: Avishag Shaar-Yashuv
Israel Prize for lifetime achievement will be awarded to Vered Hulda-Gurevich from Haifa, who dedicated her life to volunteer work and helping others, the prize committee announced on Monday.
Gurevich, dubbed "the angel in white" after her all-white attire, has been visiting Haifa's Rambam Medical Center every day for many years, trying to lift the spirits of sick and injured soldiers.
The second recipient of the prize is Chairman of the Rashi Fund Eli Alaluf, who dedicated his life-long activities to promote periphery towns in Israel.
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Gurevich, 84, was born in the coastal town of Atlit and was a member of the Haganah organization in her youth, helping her family hide Jewish immigrants in their home.
Later on, Gurevich became one of the first volunteers in the Israeli navy, and has dedicated her time and property to help IDF soldiers ever since the Yom Kippur War.
Gurevich arrives at the hospital daily – always dressed in white – and organizes parties and treats for injured and sick soldiers as well as terror victims.
She also helps IDF disabled veterans and bereaved families. In addition, Gurevich has been active as a member of council and board of directors at Beit Hagefen – a center educating towards coexistence between Jews and Arabs in Haifa.
Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav congratulated Gurevich for her win, and recounted the first time he met her back in 1978, when he was first elected as a member of the city council.
"She would walk around, also in white, and always made sure that we say and do good things," he recalled.
According to Yahav, granting the prize to Gurevich "gives it a special meaning this year. The 'angel in white,' whom everyone knows, symbolizes in her charitable work the huge heart that beats in the beautiful Israel."
Warrior of progressThe second prize recipient, Eli Alaluf, 66, dedicated his life to Zionist activities, which he began pursuing in his homeland of Morocco.
He served in a number of positions at the World Zionist Organization, Keren Hayesod (United Israel Appeal) and other Zionist institutions.
In its reasoning for awarding the prize, the committee noted that Alaluf is a warrior fighting for the progress and development of Israel's periphery areas, and that his activity for the State and for society have been a central theme throughout his life.
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