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    Posted June 9, 2014 by
    Roosevelt Island, New York
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Impact Your World

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    More than 500 people participated in the Fourth Annual “5K Race to Save Lives,” raising $1,000,000 to benefit United Hatzalah, Israel’s fastest emergency response volunteer organization.

    The race was held on Roosevelt Island. The money raised will be used to purchase 62 “ambucycles” – or the motorcycles United Hatzalah volunteers use to respond to emergencies – along with defibrillators and other lifesaving equipment for United Hatzalah’s network of 2,300-plus volunteers. Those participating included 30 developmentally challenged students from the National Jewish Council for Disabilities Individualized Vocational Development Unit in Midwood, Brooklyn, along with Eli Beer, the former Jerusalem EMT who founded United Hatzalah in 2000.

    “The ‘Race to Save Lives’ is a unique opportunity for each and every one of us to make a real impact,” said United Hatzalah President and Founder Eli Beer. “Participation in the 5K, either by running or sponsoring, will enable United Hatzalah’s volunteers in Israel to respond to emergency scenes even faster, with the right equipment and ultimately prevent countless tragedies and save more precious human lives.”

    All runners participated in teams of five. The Race to Save Lives has been an annual event since 2010, when American volunteers Alex Goldberg and Aharon Watson organized the initial outing. Both were studying in Israel at the time. The race moved to New York in 2013, when Goldberg and Watson returned to the States. Last year’s 5K was completed by 400 runners who collectively raised more that $1,000,000 for United Hatzalah. Race to Save Lives is generously sponsored by MBA Mission, Weatherproof and A&H.

    United Hatzalah is the largest independent, non-profit, fully-volunteer first response organization that provides free emergency care in Israel within two to three minutes of the initial distress call. The key to United Hatzalah’s success in saving lives is its trademark “ambucycles” - medically equipped motorcycles, which are able to travel nimbly through traffic, narrow alleys and obstructed roadways to bring all medical equipment an ambulance carries to the scene of an emergency.

    United Hatzalah is Israel’s first and largest fully-volunteer emergency rapid response service. With a fleet of over 300 ambucycles, United Hatzalah’s 2,300 volunteers respond to nearby emergencies from mobile-alerts and are able to arrive first on site to administer urgent care within minutes from the initial call of distress – bridging the gap between emergency and ambulance arrival. For more information visit

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