What is different about Haverut, a program started at the Hadassah Medical Organization in Jerusalem, is that it not only uses the arts to distract or manage patients but also to help them create a new formula for living. Haverut helps develop a mindset of “I am a healthy person, who has cancer” or “My body is failing, but my soul is strong and well.”

Haverut (Hebrew for “friendship") supports and empowers the medical world by providing programs and services that incorporate art, spirituality and community into Israeli hospital wards.

Aiming to support everyone in the Israel health care system, Haverut’s provision of care is wide-ranging, including spiritual caregiving, healing art and music programs, and therapeutic workshops and training seminars with doctors, nurses and students.

With a supportive presence in hundreds of hospital wards, Haverut is able to fill an aching void in the Israeli medical system. The goal is simple: Enable medical centres across the country to become healing centres for the body, mind and spirit.

From here in Israel can emerge a unique message of health—one that sees the person as a whole in body, spirit, heart and soul; one that sees society as a community that cares for all of its parts without fear.

The Healing Arts at Hadassah Mt Scopus

Hadassah Mt Scopus regularly welcomes volunteers as part of Haverut's Connect and Create program, which “uses the arts to nurture the spirit”.

Haverut trains volunteers to engage with patients, under the direction of medical staff and spiritual caregivers. The program is highly flexible. Spiritual caregivers and volunteers take their cues from patients and use whatever tools they think will work—prayer, art, music, a listening ear—to cross boundaries, touch spirit and soul and reach people in their time of need.


Among the volunteers are 14 students from the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design who spend several hours each week with patients and their families, painting, sculpting and encouraging creativity.

Volunteers from the local Ramot Zion Congregation, along with a Haverut spiritual caregiver, converge on the Mount Scopus rehabilitation department two afternoons a week for a game club. They set up a chessboard, Rummikub and puzzles, bring Hebrew, Arabic and Russian magazines and give manicures.

An annual spring arts and crafts exhibit in the Mount Scopus hospital entrance lobby showcases Haverut’s work with patients. Last year’s exhibit included a healing mandala, with blessings in Hebrew, Arabic, English and Russian jointly created by staff, patients and visitors.