"Where did the name Magic Moments come from? However it was thought about, it is an accurate title for the feelings and experiences of the host family concerned... Daniele Cohen wa s handpicked by me.
I wanted a girl, to break the all boy monotony that I have. From the moment she arrived, all worries and uncertainties surrounding a stranger in our home disappeared. Daniele simply just fitted in, bringing in to our lives a sense of love for Israel, excitement to see the sights of London and an affection for a complete stranger.
The week, which by the way flew by far too quickly, was filled with tours into the City, rehearsals, barbeques and learning. There was also to end the week, the climax - the emotional and brilliant commemoration presentation of Yom Hazikaron. Where we could steal her away from it all, we took Daniele to restaurants and the famous Madam Tussauds – a treat for the whole family! Daniele’s warm and charming personality won her the hearts of my rather shy sons, my husband Michael and myself. Our time with her was short but meaningful, and one I shall treasure always.A true Magic Moment." Barbara Freed
“It was very nice and exciting to have something new happen.” 11 year old Zach
“It was an interesting and unusual experience, which turned out better then expected.” 14 year old Benji
THE LIVING BRIDGE
When EMS hosted Magic Moments delegates in the past, Joel always asked when we could be a host family and so in April 2009 Gal and Chen came to stay with us.
Instantly there was a bond between us all - learning about each others’ lives and understanding where and how they lived.
There were lots of tears when the week ended but we knew this was not the end of our friendship. We continued to chat on Facebook, sharing our day to day lives. In the summer of 2009 Joel went on Israel tour with Noam and one evening Chen and his mother drove down from the north to see him whilst he was in Tel Aviv.
The experience made us want to be part of this again. With our daughter Lauren now in the IDF, it became more important on Yom Hazikaron to make the EMS community more aware of the importance of understanding and sharing in their sorrow and remembrance, as Lauren had experienced losing a very close friend from the same unit. In October 2009 Joel was chosen as a delegate to go to Israel with Magic Moments. He was so excited, as by this time he had been introduced via Facebook to others from the same area, so when he got to Israel the bonds were built immediately.
He had an amazing time. In 2010 we volunteered to be a host family again and this time we had a lovely girl called Shir. Joel had met her in October when visiting the school the Magic Moments 2009 delegates attend, so when she came into our home she was already a good friend of the family. The Living Bridge, which is what this project is all about, has certainly stayed part of our lives, as we are constantly in touch with Gal, Chen and Shir and know we will be part of each others lives way into the future. Frances Sherman
In loving memory of Chen Shamir who tragically passed away aged 17 on 9th August after a long illness, as this issue was going to press. Chen will always be remembered with love and affection by all of those whose lives he touched. He often said his time at EMS was a highlight of the last few years and his Magic Moments participation certificate had pride of place on his bedside table right to the end.