On Israel’s Independence Day in April 1994, Yad Sarah founder Uri Lupolianski walked across a gaily decorated stage to thunderous applause to accept the Israel Prize for Yad Sarah “for a significant contribution to the society and the State” from the President of Israel. This is the highest tribute given by the State of Israel.
The prize committee cited Yad Sarah’s great humanitarian and economic impact on Israeli life through its more than 6,000 volunteers, its completely non-sectarian, non-discriminatory policy of help to all who need it, and its distinction as a leader in rehabilitative, paramedical and social services throughout Israel.
When the Kaplan Prize for Efficiency was awarded to Yad Sarah four years earlier, it was noted that the organization saves the Israeli economy about $250,000,000 a year in hospitalization and medical equipment costs.
However, you can’t put a price on what Yad Sarah saves in human dignity and well-being. The house that Uri Lupolianski built shows how one person, translating the most transcendent values of Jewish life into deeds, can capture the imagination of thousands, galvanize them into action, tap their deepest resources of love and goodness – and make a difference.