Holy Purpose, Historic Route


Gan Sacher (Sacher Park) in the heart of Jerusalem, plays the role in the capital that Central Park does here — a site for concerts and barbecues, soccer games and Frisbee throwing, political rallies and romantic dates.

Last week Gan Sacher was the venue of a mitzvah.

Some 500 runners — mostly young men and women from English-speaking yeshivot and seminaries in Jerusalem — took part in a five-kilometer fundraising race on behalf of United Hatzalah, an independent volunteer Emergency Medical Services organization. The route, which began and ended at the Matzada Scouts building near the park, took the racers (separate races for men and women) through parts of the hilly park and the nearby Valley of the Cross.

The second annual “Race to Save Lives,” postponed for a month because of a rare-in-Israel snowstorm, raised about $260,000, which will buy 10 specially equipped motorcycle-ambulances, which travel through the city’s crowded streets and alleys more efficiently than the standard, larger vehicles.
One of the race organizers was Sarah Mandelbaum, who will enroll in Stern College in Manhattan in September.