Written By Evan Kamikow
Growing up, not many of my friends played tennis. But as the son of a Division One tennis player, I was immediately intertwined with the sport. Some of my earliest memories from my childhood were having my father teach me how to properly hit a ball and driving me to all my lessons.
Being here in Yokneam for Lev L’Lev’s day of giving, these memories came full circle. We had the privilege of covering the US delegation’s tennis team as they worked in a clinic with local Israeli children with special needs and disabilities. I spent multiple summers at a tennis camp where I was the little kid mixed in with the high schoolers trying to find my way on the court.
Watching the US delegates take these young Israeli kids under their wing for just a few hours shows how sports can truly make a difference in a person’s life. The smiles, the laughs, and the wind blowing in everyone’s face truly can’t fully describe how impactful today was for both the children and the athletes.
Sometimes when we are wrapped up in work, it’s hard to stop and look around for a few moments to appreciate the beauty of a trip like this. July 10th was not one of those days. I know for a fact I came out of this day as a different person than when we took those first long steps down the bus stairs.
But the clinic was not about me. It was about a beautiful day shared by the US delegation tennis team and the children of Israel, who each made a new friend.