Even though Liran Look was automatically eligible for an exemption from mandatory military service due to his disability, he volunteered to serve in the IDF. During a ceremony on Monday, Look received a special award for excellence in recognition of his contributions.
When all of his friends received their orders to enlist, he decided that in spite of the difficulties, he wanted to enlist as well, explained Look, highlighting his devotion to the IDF and the Jewish state.
“The desire to serve has been with me since childhood. Unfortunately, when I first approached an officer in the enlistment office, I was immediately told that my condition would prevent me from serving.”
Liran eventually heard about the JNF’s “Special in Uniform” program, and contacted Lt. Col. Ariel Almog, the head of the program, who spoke with him about opportunities to enlist as a volunteer.
Special in Uniform is a unique program, now operated in partnership with the Jewish National Fund (JNF) to integrate young people with autism and other disabilities into the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and, in turn, into Israeli society. Its core belief is that everyone has a place in Israeli society, and has the right to reach his or her full potential. Special in Uniform focuses on the unique talents of each individual participant to help them find a job within the IDF that is a perfect fit for their skills and helping keep Israel safe and secure.
Liran eventually enlisted through the Special in Uniform program, and is now stationed with an emergency warehouse unit in the Home Front Command. His commanders have noted his dedication to his duties and the hard work he puts in every day to ensure that his unit will be ready when called upon.
In honor of the 68th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel, Liran received special awards of excellence from Maj. Gen. Yoel Strick of Israel’s Home Front Command (HFC).
The Special in Uniform program is sponsored in party by the Israeli government, though most of the funding comes from the JNF and private donations.