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Dear Fellowship Friend,
The desperate situation in state-run orphanages throughout the former Soviet Union (FSU) weighs heavily on my heart. These facilities are notorious for their run-down and dangerous living conditions. I just received another report from our partners in the region that confirmed once more just how serious this situation is.
The report contained the stories of several children who recently were able to leave state-run facilities to live in a Fellowship-sponsored children’s home. One boy, Refael, said the state-run orphanage where he lived for ten years was “little better than a prison.” He tearfully told of the beatings and abuse he received from orphanage staff. Luda, a girl, said that besides being physically abused, the children in the state-run orphanage where she lived were “treated like slaves.” At mealtime, the hungry, malnourished children were forced to serve staff their meals and to give leftover food to the dogs! Only then were they allowed to eat.
Thank God we were able to find Refael and Luda places in a Fellowship-sponsored children’s home and free them from these terrible conditions!
The contrast between state-run facilities, where deprivation and abuse are so common, and Fellowship-funded children’s homes throughout the region could not be greater. Homes run by The Fellowship’s partners offer a warm, loving environment, where a child’s physical and spiritual needs can be met. Staff members pay personal attention to each child, offering them the boundaries and loving guidance they need not just to survive, but thrive.
But as I think of the overwhelming number of children in the FSU who remain in state-run orphanages or on the street my heart breaks.
We need to help more Jewish children escape dangerous conditions and receive the care they so desperately need with the help of partners like you.
To give you an idea of the life-changing difference your donation can make I want to share with you an email I received recently from the director of one of our homes:
My friend, let us indeed continue to help and save children by supporting Isaiah 58. Your gift will truly be a blessing to Jewish children who have suffered greatly. May God bless you for your compassionate heart for His children, Israel.