Yad L’Ami is a small non-profit organization established in 2001 by Wim and Ria Doekes. Although small in size, Yad L’Ami has become a thriving foundation that focuses on personal attention and providing timely assistance.

Yad L’Ami offers assistance to the neediest groups in Israel. The aging group of Holocaust survivors is extremely vulnerable. Many of them are in their declining years and are teetering on the edge of desperate poverty. Many are lonely and look forward to the visits and assistance from employees of Yad L’Ami.

Besides caring for Holocaust survivors, Yad L’Ami is also active in the troubled area surrounding the Gaza Strip. Residents of villages and kibbutzim living under the threatening shadow of the Gaza Strip are often severely traumatized. Yad L’Ami provides therapeutic relief to young children, teenagers, and young families.

Yad L’Ami also supports mostly Ethiopian students and gives them that much-needed push to enable them to climb the social ladder.

Yad L’Ami provides basic necessities for the continuing and even increasing flow of Jewish immigrants (olim chadashim) who have embraced the challenge of settling in the Promised Land. In short, the purpose of Yad L’Ami is to be your helping and comforting hand and heart, especially for those who have suffered trauma as a result of their war experiences and have to struggle to keep their heads above water. Our hearts goes out to the elderly, youth, and new immigrants who are attempting to get their lives on track under challenging circumstances. Personal contact between the Jewish recipients of assistance and their sponsors is seen as a priority.

In 1989, Ria decided to leave her comfortable life in the Netherlands and travel to Israel to work as a volunteer. For years, she worked in a hospital and, at the same time, cared for the elderly owner of the apartment in which she lived. She specialized in stimulation therapy for treating children with Down Syndrome and provided special assistance to Jewish families.

Ria’s unexpected meeting with Wim Doekes, a fellow Dutchman, ended her single life and led to marriage. Together, they assisted the elderly in the Nachla’ot neighbourhood of Jerusalem. Soon there arose in their hearts the desire to start up a study/guesthouse. The beginning of this new venture coincided with the start of the second Intifada (Palestinian terrorist uprising) in October 2000.

In 2001, Wim and Ria established the Yad L’Ami non-profit organization. The profits obtained from the running of the guesthouse were set aside to be used to encourage the Jewish people. At that time, Wim and Ria did not realize that this initiative would ultimately lead to their important service to the Jewish nation. Seven years later, Wim and Ria closed the guesthouse and devoted themselves entirely to the development of the fledgling Yad L’Ami non-profit organization.

In 2015, Wim passed away and Ria faced the great challenge of leading Yad L’Ami on her own. Full of passion, Ria accepted the challenge and committed herself to fulfilling her great desire to see this thriving non-profit organization continue to be the outstretched, helping, and comforting hand for all of you as donors to the Jewish people.

We believe that God will bring His people back as He has promised. We believe that He wants to use the nations to accomplish this task. Together we can make the prophetic words become a reality as described beautifully in Isaiah 49:22. We believe that non-Jews have been participating in the spiritual blessings of Israel and therefore it is our biblical duty to assist them in material ways (Romans 15:27). We desire to pave the way for the Jewish people and clear away the high piles of stones that have accumulated over the course of two thousand years of Christianity. Then we may say to Zion: “Your Savior comes!” (Isaiah 62:11). We can give hope and speak courage to those Holocaust survivors who might have just a few years left to live, and to those who have lost their hope in the threatening situations in Israel (Ezekiel 37:11).

Comfort, comfort My people, says your God (Isaiah 40:1).