In a first for United Hatzalah, a class of 18 people have completed the National Registry Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) course in Efrat, on Wednesday.
The graduates will now begin their internships in the field.
What made this 8-month course unique is that it was the first time United Hatzalah offered their EMT course outside of Jerusalem, and more importantly, it was organized in memory of Ari Fuld HY”D and subsidized by an anonymous donor.
Following Ari’s murder on September 16, 2018, Yonaton Atkin, Assistant Director of Development in Israel for United Hatzalah, organized the class with the goal of introducing more EMT volunteers into Gush Etzion and to honor Ari’s legacy of saving lives in Israel — in the “beautiful rolling hills of Judea.”
At the graduation ceremony, attended by Miriam Fuld, Ari’s widow, Atkin spoke about one of his first encounters with Ari years earlier.
Ari, as a member of the Efrat Counter Terrorist Unit (CTU), had been going house-to-house looking for a suspected terrorist infiltrator. Atkin’s house was one of those that Ari checked. That interaction with Ari left an indelible impression on Atkin. As a result, Atkin later joined the Efrat CTU.
Now, eight months later, under the training of dedicated United Hatzalah instructor Ari Deutch, United Hatzalah has 18 newly trained EMT volunteers in the field.
The graduation ceremony was held on the Eitam Hill in Efrat. Also in attendance was Eli Pollack, CEO of United Hatzalah who spoke about the importance of fast response times in Gush Etzion and saving lives.
The Eitam is the last undeveloped hill that is part of the town of Efrat, and in case you head out there in the dark with dozens of cars in a convoy behind you, the last turnoff to the hill can be a little tricky to find.
Residents of Efrat have been volunteering their time to build a working farm on the Eitam Hill, also in Ari Fuld’s memory.