Israel's Good News Newsletter to 24th May 2015


In the 24th May 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        An Israeli charity has saved the lives of children from 50 countries.
·        A moving account of the work of Israeli doctors in Nepal.
·        Israel’s technology is helping the dairy industry throughout the developing world.
·        An Israeli startup lets you put leftover foreign currency into digital deposit accounts.
·        Dionne Warwick and the BackStreet Boys held sold-out concerts in Israel.
·        The Chief of Staff to Israel’s President has a PhD and is a mother of 11 children.

·        Last week’s Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “Israel is the Cream of the Crop” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also published on the Jerusalem Post, IsraPundit, IsraelSeen, San Diego Jewish World and United With Israel websites.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, Janglo and United With Israel with extra features on health, global impact, technology and culture.

Page Down for details on these and more good news stories from Israel.  Thank You Michelle and other readers for sending me links to many of these positive news articles.  Please use IsraelActive to search the archives.


ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS

Heart surgery saves baby from East Timor.  Surgeons from Israeli charity Save A Child’s Heart (SACH) successfully operated to repair the congenital heart defect in baby Lisa from East Timor.  The Southeast Asia country is the 50th country to send its patients to Israel.  SACH doctors have saved over 3,500 children’s lives.

How ALEH Negev was founded.  I visited the special facilities for the disabled at ALEH Negev in Oct 2012.  This new video features Maj Gen Doron Almog, who gave up his army career to found the village.

Sensors for Japanese hospital beds.  Israel’s EarlySense makes sensors that detect when patients are at risk of falling from beds or chairs.  EarlySense has just announced a strategic cooperation agreement with Japanese giant Mitsui that will help launch the distribution of EarlySense products in Japan.

Advancing cancer detection.  Israeli biotech Rosetta Genomics boosted its molecular diagnostics capability by purchasing PersonalizeDx in the United States.  Rosetta also received US patent protection for its cancer tests.

Never too late.  65 year-old Chaya Sarah Shahar of Bnei Brak gave birth to her first child, after 46 years of marriage.  The healthy baby boy was born at a Kfar Saba hospital.  Last year, a 61 year-old woman gave birth to her first child in Jerusalem.  Chaya is the second oldest woman in the world to give birth.

ReWalk makes paraplegics healthier.  Israel’s ReWalk exoskeleton not only enables paraplegics to walk upright, it also improves their overall fitness.  It allows users to exercise, use the toilet, boost their self-image and improve their mental health.

Revolutionizing the management of pain.  Israel’s MedaSense Biometrics won the WOW Competition (medical device category) for the most innovative startup at the IATA Biomed exhibition in May.  MedaSense’s pain monitor uses a finger sensor to record vital signs and a unique algorithm to measure pain mathematically.

How the lymphatic system forms.  The origin of the body’s lymphatic system is key to understanding the immune system and the treatment of cancer.  Scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute and at the Technion have discovered the source and have generated lymphatic cells in the laboratory.


ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL

ESRA’s project for ex-Ethiopians in Netanya.  Here is what the English Speaking Residents Association is doing to help the 30,000 plus Ethiopian community in my home city of Netanya.

Bring your baby to lectures.  When a student’s baby started crying in one of the Organizational Behavior lectures of Professor Sydney Engelberg, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem professor picked up the baby, calmed it down and continued the lecture whilst holding the baby.  The photo has gone viral on facebook.

Emergency beepers to protect lonely and elderly.  Israel’s Yad Sarah organization has distributed emergency beepers to 20,000 people who live alone.  Users can contact Yad Sarah, a doctor, police, an ambulance, relatives and others at any time using a button on a bracelet.

A minister for minorities.  Only Israel would consider pensioners, students, minorities and women important enough to have a ministry set-up for them.  http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Gila-Gamliel-appointed-Minister-of-Pensioners-students-young-people-and-gender-equality-403128

Syrians treated in Israel:  Two wounded Syrians were treated at the Baruch Padeh Medical Center in Poriya near Tiberias overnight on Wednesday.  One of the injured, a 17-year-old, was treated for shrapnel wounds.  And a miracle – CNN praises Israel’s treatment of wounded Syrians (although the sound quality is poor).

Israel’s humanity in Nepal.  Please read this article, from Dr Giora Weiser who was part of the Israeli medical delegation and field hospital in Nepal.  He saw devastation and trauma on a scale that he had never witnessed before, but saved many lives.  Dr Weiser would like you to tell this to Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch.

Treating water in Colombia.  Israel’s RWL Water has built a major water treatment facility in Colombia.  RWL treats the 86,000 cubic meters of water a day produced during extraction of oil in Campo Rubiales, so that it reaches a level suitable for irrigation.  http://israelnewtech.com/2015/05/rwl-water-announces-completion-of-major-water-treatment-facility-in-colombia/

What Miami learnt from Israel.  (TY Michelle) A group of leaders in Miami’s budding start-up community recently visited Israel.  Their experiences taught them (a) have a can-do attitude; (b) get institutional support; (c) build a network; (d) embrace failure; (e) play the long game; (f) find strength in diversity (g) open doors.

Hadera twins with El Pasa.  The mayors of El Paso, in Texas USA and Hadera Israel have signed a sister-city agreement.  It will allow Israeli investors to come to El Paso and El Paso-area business operators to go to Hadera to find business opportunities. It also will allow for student and cultural exchanges.


SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

More medals at Asian Physics Olympiad.  Israeli high-school students set new records at the Asian Physics Olympiad, held in China. Competing against 23 countries, they won two silver and four bronze medals. Overall, Israel came in eighth place.  http://www.jpost.com/Business-and-Innovation/Health-and-Science/Israel-takes-8th-place-at-Asian-Physics-Olympiad-in-China-402972

Helping Alibaba beat counterfeiters.  (TY Michelle) Israeli startup Visualead has developed decorative Dotless Visual (QR) Codes for online retailing giant Alibaba, which wants to prevent counterfeit goods from being traded through its site.  The codes are also attractive to encourage potential customers to scan them.

Mapping the genome of the trout.  Israel’s NRGene has mapped the genome of the Rainbow Trout, using its DeNovoMAGIC big data genome assembly tool.  The US Dept of Agriculture initiated the task as an essential part of its breeding program for healthy, protein-rich fish.  Other critical species will now be mapped.

Israel is milking it.  (TY Michelle) A good summary of Israel’s leading position in the dairy technology industry.  It includes Israel’s AKOL, which runs a database that monitors the output, health, genetics and fertility of every cow in Israel. It is now partnering with Microsoft to bring the technology to the developing world.  AKOL’s sensors can also be placed on trees, vines or in the soil to help farmers be more productive.

When to turn off cellular base stations.  Israel’s eVolution Networks’ Smart Energy Solution (SES) examines cell phone usage rates, locations, energy costs etc. to activate and deactivate base stations as needed.  It is saving Telefonica up to 35% of its energy costs.  Warren Buffet has now decided to invest in eVolution.

Picture these dishes.  (TY Michelle) “Foodography“, a joint photography project between Israel’s Catit Restaurant and Carmel Winery, has commissioned a line of dishes specifically designed by Israeli ceramic artist Adi Nissani to hold a smartphone at the best angle in which to capture the best picture of the meal.


ECONOMY & BUSINESS

State of Economy improves.  Israel’s Composite State of the Economy Index for April 2015 increased by 0.2 percent, driven mainly by increases in industrial production and trade revenue.

Ex-Intel executive forms Israeli VC firm.  Intel Corp's former chief product officer, Dadi Perlmutter, has co-founded the venture capital company Eucalyptus Growth Capital, which aims to raise $300 million (£191.4 million) to invest in Israeli companies seeking listings.

Joint Israel-Ontario research earned $1 billion.  Israel and Ontario have just extended their 10-year research & development collaboration program by another 5 years.  Prior investment of $18 million generated $1 billion in earnings to the companies emerging from the program.  And another $6 million has just gone in.

Rent your apartment using Israeli technology.  The modern way to rent your house or apartment is with Airbnb.  But it can be stressful, time-consuming and possibly costly.  Israel’s Guesty provides your prospective and actual guests with fast responses to their seemingly endless questions.

EMC expands Haifa R&D center.  IT giant EMC is to hire 50 more employees at its Haifa research and development center. EMC has thousands of Israeli employees: in Petach Tikvah, Galil Yam, Herzliya, Haifa and Beer Sheva. EMC came to Israel in 1996. In 2012 it bought Israel’s XtremIO for over $400 million.

What to do with those foreign coins.  When you land at Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Tbilisi, Milan or Manila, look out for the big yellow (Israeli) TravelersBox machines.  Deposit your spare foreign coins and notes and convert them into digital currency.  Coming soon to Brazil and (of course) Tel Aviv.

Saudi airplane lands at Ben Gurion.  (TY Michelle) On 5th May, a leasing company took an off-duty Saudi Arabian Airbus A330-300 to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport for servicing by Israel Aerospace’s Bedek, one of the world’s leading aircraft maintenance companies.  The Saudi owners were not pleased when they found out.

A fruitful time for Frutarom.  Israel’s Frutarom latest record quarterly results consolidate its position as one of the world’s largest companies in the field of flavors and specialty ingredients.  It also has acquired its fourth and fifth acquisitions of the year – India’s Sonarome and Canada’s BSA.

Baidu makes its 3rd Israeli investment.  Chinese Internet giant Baidu has invested millions in Israel’s Taboola – famous for its “you may also be interested in” online advertisements that tempt users to visit other sites.  Baidu has previously invested in Israel’s Tonara and Pixellot, and China is Israel’s number 1 investor.

Connecticut seeks Israeli companies.  (TY Michelle) Connecticut has hired Chaim Oren of the Oren Group to convince Israeli companies to relocate to the US.  Oren’s focus will be on businesses involved in aeronautics, bioscience, advanced manufacturing, green technologies, insurance and digital media.


CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT

Germany funds Tel Aviv Bauhaus restoration.  Germany is to donate 2.5 million Euros for the preservation and restoration of Tel Aviv’s famous “white city” – a UNESCO World Heritage site.  The buildings, built in the German Bauhaus style, were designed mostly by German Jews who fled Nazi Germany in the 1930s.

Israel Day in Central Park.  The annual Israel Day free concert takes place on May 31 in Central Park New York. It will feature British rocker Alex Clare, Israel’s Gad Elbaz, Lipa Schmeltzer, Mati Shrika, Avraham Rosenblum and the Shloime Dachs Orchestra and Singers.

Backstreet boys came back.  The Backstreet boys cancelled their planned Israel concert last summer due to the fighting in Gaza, but made good on their promise to return.  They performed three shows at the Ra'anana Amphitheatre.  All 20,000 tickets for each concert were sold out.

Dionne Warwick melts hearts in Tel Aviv.  Over 5,000 fans were wooed and soothed by renowned Dionne Warwick’s singular performance at the Menorah Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv on 19th May, which left the audience with goose bumps.  And she did “Say a little prayer for you”.

Britpop group Suede.  (TY Size Doesn’t Matter) Another musical icon is coming to Israel: English alternative rock band Suede, which will perform at the Menora Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv on July 30.  This will be the group's fifth performance in Israel; their last performance in the country was in 2011.

TV rots your brain, but…..  After Israeli executive Sarit Fishbaine watched a TV medical soap, she decided to get a second opinion about a lump she was worried about.  The decision saved her life.  Coincidentally, Sarit is the daughter of Professor Sidney Engelberg – who appears in another article in this newsletter.


THE JEWISH STATE

Celebrating Jerusalem Day.  The Western Wall (Kotel) was full of worshippers for a festive prayer service to honor Jerusalem Day.  It was attended by several Chief Rabbis and featured singer Yitzhak Meir.  Thousands of revelers later danced at the Kotel, celebrating the re-unification of the city in the 1967 Six Day War. And (TY Michelle) Jerusalem’s emergence as a Tech Hub has made the city into a link between history and destiny.

Israel’s first ultra-orthodox tech incubator.  Yitzik Crombie and Racheli Ganot have launched a first of its kind tech incubator as part of their Haredi Hi-Tech Forum. The incubator specifically targets the Haredi community - much of which lives below the poverty line - and its goal is to bring the high-tech to Bnei Brak.

Limmud brings Torah to Tel Aviv.  For the first time, the global Jewish learning movement Limmud reached the White City.  The two-day event provided the normally secular city of Tel Aviv with 130 sessions, 120 presenters and seven musical performances.

What’s happening on Shavuot.  Israel is the ultimate place to celebrate Shavuot.  Next year why not stay on a Moshav where you can enjoy folk dancing, horse prancing, kite flying, a cow beauty pageant and the food!  Also on Voice of Israel you can learn why Shavuot is a night of revelation.

President’s Chief of Staff is mother of eleven.  Rivka Ravitz, 39, is Israeli President Reuven Rivlin’s Chief of Staff and has been Reuven’s aid for 16 years.  She holds degrees in Computer Science and Politics and a PhD in Public Policy.  She also challenges stereotypes, as she is an ultra-orthodox Jew and a mother of eleven children.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiekRiY3ChY