Keeping Cool in the Midst of Red Tape

Having now established an Israeli charity, there are certain privileges of this status.  We Red Tape Mummy (Small)can invite volunteer translators to come help us out and give them an extended visa.  We also have the privilege of collecting all the paperwork involved.  Oh, yes, ALL the paperwork needed.

The list of documents needed is not that long, but the process…

  • Criminal background check with Apostille stamp
  • Health certification with Apostille stamp
  • Doctor certificate of health
  • 2-3 Recommendations
  • Application for Volunteer Service
  • Application for Ministry Office
  • Birth Certificate with Apostille Stamp
  • and a few other minor items

So, here is the fun part.  If the translator is coming from a Russian speaking country, then obviously all the paperwork is in- Russian!  Now all the certifications and government papers must be translated into English.  Yup, each page- even the birth certificate.

The volunteer is responsible for getting all of that done and it is quite a lot of work.  When this volunteer had everything completed, she scanned it all and sent it to me.

Meanwhile, I have been in the ministry office several times checking the list of requirements and seeing what else I have to do.  So, even with repeated visits, we are staying pretty cool.

But a few days ago, the temperature went up.  My temper-(ature), that is.

I arrived at the office and the guardian of the ticket machine would not give me that all important piece of paper- a ticket for an appointment.  Because I spoke English he wanted me to get out of line and go to another part of the office.  Been there, done that.  Since you can only get a ticket between 8-8:30am and not after, I wasn’t moving.  It was 8:04 and the line behind me was growing.  He kept telling me to leave the line and I kept telling him I wanted a ticket.  So, far, I was quiet and polite.  But even volcanoes blow their stack if there is enough pressure. Well, the pressure was building and now it was my time.  I stood my ground, leaned close to him and yelled, “Ticket!  Visa!  Now!!”

His eyes got big as he stared at me, he leaned over to the machine and without even looking at it, punched in for a number and gave it to me.

I said a polite “Todah” (thank you) and went and sat down. That is not my usual way of doing business and I hope to behave myself in future situations.  However, as a result I was able to see someone and turn in the paperwork for a translator coming from Siberia.

Was that the end?  No, it was not.  Close, but not quite.  Today I had another visit and found out I needed one paper notarized by an Israeli lawyer.  One paper had to have the translation verified that it was correct.  This of course required a Russian/English speaking lawyer.  I prayed for help.

God came through, with the help of my friends I contacted such a lawyer.  She was great, notarized the required papers and tomorrow I return.  Papers are all complete, ready to go!  It has been a long haul but I have learned a lot of what is required and how to push through.

I am extremely grateful to the Israel government for giving us the opportunity to assist the Survivors by letting us bring in volunteers.  It is a privilege.  Also, God has given us favor in the ministry office in the form of several workers there who have been kind and helpful. It is interesting when the workers recognize you outside the office and give a friendly greeting!

But God did even more.  He gives us encouragement at the time He knows we need it.  On my return from the last visit to the Ministry Office, I received a sweet note from my friend in the Welfare Department of Israel- congratulating me on sticking with it- without my telling her of all our recent difficulties.

“Good evening my dear lady!

I really appreciate you, how you continue to be faithful to the people and State of Israel, with all the difficulties, all the bureaucracy YOU continue to give to the people of Israel.

With respect and great appreciation, “

What a sweet blessing and encouragement!  God is so good.  We will continue to go forward.

Continuing to put one step in front of the other,



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