Breindy can be found behind the scenes at EFRAT’s Jerusalem headquarters working long hours to ensure the smooth running of her department. Almost 25 years have passed since Breindy, newly married and looking for work, was interviewed by Dr. Schussheim.
The office has grown over the years and with it the need for management. What began as one small centralized team, has gradually developed into distinct departments, each responsible for a different aspect of the day to day running of the organization.
Breindy’s role as EFRAT’s executive secretary involves a wide range of responsibilities and she is particularly in demand as one of EFRAT’s resident bilinguals. Responsible for English speaking donor correspondence, Breindy responds to calls and emails from donors across the globe. Sussex, England; Texas, Arizona; Pretoria, South Africa are just a few of the locations she is in communication with. EFRAT has contact with people across North and South America, Canada, Europe, South Africa, Australia etc. Breindy explained that she is appreciative of anyone who is interested in supporting EFRAT’s work and will do her utmost to respond to people’s queries, taking time to listen to their feedback or concerns.
Filing donations, making bank transfers, tracking accounts, managing donations via the website, updating systems and checking bank statements, all make up Breindy’s daily workload and she employs her high attention to detail and strong eye for accuracy to the role. Throughout the year Breindy is the go-to-person in the office for trouble shooting and problem solving.
Letter writing, liaising with the marketing department, working together with EFRAT’s other teams, are just a few more examples of Breindy’s daily fare. She finds it hard to enumerate them, as tasks come thick and fast.
Breindy explained that working for this dynamic organization brings her tremendous satisfaction, with the knowledge that her role supports the vital work being carried out ‘in the field’.
Dramatic moments appear to be part and parcel of working at EFRAT. The waiting area for mothers is nearby Breindy’s office. Over the years, she has witnessed many emotional moments and recalls one particular episode, when a woman had come to consult with Dr. Schussheim as she weighed up whether to maintain or end her pregnancy. When she subsequently came back to show him her healthy baby, the whole office was charged with emotion.
Similarly emotive are the letters Breindy receives from donors containing personal stories of their own. One woman regularly contributes money in memory of the baby she never had, terminated at a time when she had no support or options. Breindy commented that there can be a lot of sadness in some donors’ backgrounds and she attempts to offer a compassionate ear to whoever she speaks to. Donors receive certificates recording details of the baby born with the help of their donation. Some choose to dedicate their donation to the memory of a loved one. Breindy recalls phone calls from donors who have been deeply moved by these certificates.
As a final comment, Breindy said that she wishes that more donors would come to visit. Some have been donating for years but have yet to see EFRAT’s work in practice. With characteristic warmth she extends an open invitation to anyone who is interested in seeing EFRAT’s work.
Talking to Breindy, it is clear that every position in this organization is strongly defined by care and commitment to EFRAT’s goals. There are no sidelines here.