Los Angeles Angels’ first baseman Albert Pujols was in Jerusalem this week, along with his wife Deidre, to visit the new Shalva National Children’s Center — the largest center of its kind in the world.
Shalva- Israel Association for the Care and Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities is renowned for providing state-of-the-art care and community outreach services to thousands of families with special needs children in Israel.
The Pujols’ oldest child, Isabella, has Down syndrome. Since 2005, The Pujols Family Foundation has also provided a wide array of activities to special needs children in five different cities across the US.
“I feel blessed that through my own life experience with my daughter, she has taught me to give back to people with disabilities so that they can develop their full potential in life and give back to society,” said Dominican American professional baseball star Pujols. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to visit Shalva and to see what is done in Israel to assist youngsters with disabilities and was impressed with their unique facilities, which don’t exist anywhere else.”
The Pujols were given a tour of Shalva’s brand new $55 million dollar facility.
“We were privileged to host Albert and Deidre Pujols who do so much all over the world for people with disabilities,” said by Avi Samuels, Shalva director. “Albert maintained that this was not a one-time visit to Shalva, but rather the beginning of a long-term friendship, where we will work together to do great things for special needs people of all ages in the near future. Shalva is excited about forging this important relationship with Albert, Deidre and their worthy foundation.”