Three Maccabi Hunter Haifa players, Amit Simhon, Willy Workman and Ofek Avital visited the Tamir School in Kiryat Ata on Thursday morning for the club’s first community visit of the 2016-17 season.
The Tamir School is a community special education school for kids between the ages of 6 to 16, who are unprivileged. The children attend the school for 2-4 years, where they study social and behavioral skills, in order to integrate into the educational system in the future. 120 kids come to the school every day using special transportation from 32 local authorities in Israel, from Ramat Ha-Golan in the North all the way to Caesarea in the center.
At the beginning of the visit, the players held a brief conversation with the kids, introducing themselves and telling them about their professional careers. Simhon spoke about fulfilling dreams and ambitions, “as a kid I didn’t play that much, and some people thought that I was just not good enough. Eventually, I realized that I had to believe in myself and I kept working hard and because of that I developed and achieved my dream.” Simhon added, “The most important thing is to do something that you love, and you have to work hard and believe in yourself, no matter what people are saying, that’s the only way to succeed.”
After the conversation, the Green players went to the school’s basketball court and played against a few of the children teams, as well as the school’s staff, led by the headmaster, Michal Ben David.
“The activity was very exciting and gained a lot of respect from the students,” Ben David said. “All three players bestowed a rare sensitivity in accepting the kids and were very patient with them, which raised their self-esteem. It was amazing.”
Keren LaHaiym association supports the school over the last 10 years, helping renovate the school as well as provide funding for several of the school activity. The chairman of the association, Adv. Galit Shemesh who joined the visit today said, “I am glad and excited that Maccabi Haifa’s players came to the schools today and brought smiles to the kids’ faces. The most important thing is that they spoke about themselves, about the importance of perseverance and determination in order to achieve their goals. I hope that the visit today will be an example for the kids.”