Team of the Week

Hadassah Heelers


Hadassah Heelers:  Supporting Hadassah’s commitment to breast cancer treatment and research in the US and Israel

Hadassah is the largest Jewish women’s organization in the United States.  Hadassah Heelers was founded in 2004 as part of its support of cutting-edge breast cancer research and treatment in Hadassah hospitals and clinics in Israel.  Hadassah also advocates for increased funding for breast cancer research and treatment in the US — on the national and state levels.   Last year, the team had 10 members and raised $365.  This year, they hope to raise $1,000.

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“Our team is made up of women, men and children of all ages,” said Esther Shapiro, captain.  “Members include breast cancer survivors, Hadassah members and supporters who care deeply and want a speedy cure found for the disease.

“Breast cancer is an issue for women everywhere,” explained Shapiro.  “But it’s particularly serious for Ashkenazi Jewish women — who are 10 times more likely than non-Jewish women to carry the BRCA gene, which is a risk factor for developing breast cancer.”

Shapiro spreads the world about Hadassah Heelers through the New York Region of Hadassah, sharing information on the Race on its website, in its quarterly newsletter and in email blasts sent to members and supporters in Manhattan and the greater New York metropolitan area. 

Hadassah policy prohibits the team from actively fundraising on behalf of other organizations.  “But,” said Shapiro, “team members solicit family, friends and co-workers to support the important work of Komen Greater NYC and Komen for the Cure.”

The team’s favorite Race memory was in 2005, when Ruth Gursky, current president of the New York Region of Hadassah served as team captain for the first time.  “She organized our largest walking contingent, to date, on behalf of her chapter, Shatil Hadassah, and the New York Region.

“That year we had over 50 strong!  Team members included New York Region members, National Hadassah staff and volunteers, Hadassah members from the tri-state area, their families and friends.”