Solitude, abandonment, and lack of concern are some of the negative emotions that hang over many holocaust survivors like a dense cloud throughout the land of Israel. Just like the elderly in other parts of the world, many of them have little or no connection with families, children, or have anyone to take care of them.
The process of getting to that age and having a continued need for community interaction is something that may be hard to understand until you are at that place of need yourself. But adding to that the scars carried for years formed in extreme suffering, the challenge becomes that much more painful.
Today we have social media that helps us to connect with each other and that has its strengths and weaknesses. But the elderly generation in some ways has not stayed connected through the newer ways we utilize and this has led to a heightened sense of loneliness and isolation. We all have a need to be connected and needed by others. When this connection gets lost, people have a hard time justifying their existence, many lose their desire to live.
Many of the Holocaust survivors came to Israel after World War II, they became veterans and fighters in the wars that established the state. They fought to pass on to us a place where we could live in safety and no longer be a people living in vulnerability, often without the most basic right, the right to life.
After numerous conversations with Holocaust survivors, they all have the same request and the same need.
“We want someone to care about us, to talk to us and ask about our day.”
Thanks to the financial support of CBN Israel and the faithfulness of our partners here in Israel, we can organize social events for the Holocaust survivors and WWII veterans who are living among us. We sing with them, dance, eat together and, most importantly, listen to them and their stories. In addition to the social events, our partners visit these survivors living in their area on a weekly basis, bringing them food, walkers, and medicine.
Seeing them tear up with emotion at the realization that there are people around the world that care for them is a wonderful experience. Simple acts of kindness eventually raise questions about faith in the Lord, and create an openness to the message.
We are so thankful for our supporters from around the world, for enabling us to show the practical love of God to others.
May the Lord bless you and your families.