A new judo school for children with disabilities was inaugurated at the Shalva National Center in the presence of Olympic medalist Judoka Ori Sasson, MK – Culture and Sport Miri Regev, Bank Yahav CEO Shaul Gelbard, President and Founder of Shalva, Kalman Samuels, and many other dignitaries.

Ori Sasson earned international acclaim in 2010 by winning the bronze medal at the European championships in London.  His most significant accomplishment was at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio, where he won Israel’s second bronze medal at the competition.

The establishment of this special school was made possible when Sasson auctioned off the Olympic jacket, which he wore when he won the bronze medal, for $100,000, which he donated to Shalva to benefit the new school. Ori Sasson did not stop at just making the donation, but decided to volunteer to direct the educational program of the school alongside certified judo instructors who will teach the weekly group classes.

Bank Yahav has been a supporter of Shalva for several years, as part of its social involvement in the community. In this framework, the bank initiated and funded the establishment of the judo school, as well as the connection to Ori Sasson, whom the bank is sponsoring for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.

“Judo gives children self-confidence and discipline,” said Sasson, “values that I, myself, grew up with.  It’s an amazing thing when we can feel equal with other children, and for me, it’s a dream come true.”