By: Avital Stern-Buchnick
This month, we have focused on helping the neediest families in Samaria with their greatest need during the harsh winter – heat! For years, through the Samaria Family Assistance Program, we have provided food parcels for these families, especially during the holidays. But today, we have been asked to help them with their heating bills as well.
I would like to share a letter with you that Sondra and I just received from our friends at the Samaria Social Services Department. It is about how your help changed the lives of one needy family in Samaria.
Dear Sondra and Avital,
About six years ago a mother of six turned to us asking to receive food parcels. Her family was in such a dire situation that her children were almost always hungry. She did not know what to do because her husband refused to receive help. We convinced her husband that there was nothing to be ashamed of, that people go through hard times and that it was okay to accept help when needed.
We began sending the family food parcels and the peace of mind it gave, motivated the mother to find employment. She soon found a job working locally as a kindergarten assistant. Although her job did not pay much, she was overjoyed receiving her first paycheck, realizing that she could provide for her family. And even though she was now employed, the family still needed our help, and we continued to provide the family with food parcels.
Within several months of beginning to receive food parcels, one of their sons was diagnosed with cancer. As you might imagine, the diagnosis was devastating for the entire family. They were finally beginning to emerge from their financial crisis when they were hit with the terrible news. The family was heartbroken. We rallied behind them, raising funds for their hefty medical expenses, and continuing to providing food parcels, as their community stepped up to provide them with free child care. It was very important to us all that through it all, the mother would continue working.
The son went through chemotherapy and thankfully, after treatment, his condition improved. Throughout their ordeal, the family continued receiving food parcels, and this assistance is what ultimately helped them get through their crisis. Today, I am happy to report that the son is in remission and the family’s financial situation has stabilized. The mother is still working and the father has now also found work. Although their income is low, they have been able to save on food thanks to the food parcels we provide.
I am proud of the help we were able to give to this family in need. I want to thank you, Sondra and Avital, for connecting us with Christians around the world who have given so generously to needy families like this one over the years. Please know that your help has not gone unnoticed, and is making a real impact on families all over Samaria.
With gratitude and appreciation,
Director of Charitable Projects
Social Services Department
Samaria Regional Council
There are far too many needy families in this region. With your help the Samaria Family Assistance program provides monthly food packages for those who need it most, accompanying that support with guidance, employment counseling and financial management assistance, providing a holistic program to enable them to get back on their feet.
This winter, Samaria Social Services has turned to CFOIC Heartland for help keeping needy families warm. Heating during the winter months is crucial, and a matter of survival for very young children and senior citizens. There are families who just can’t afford to pay the heating bills so they don’t heat their homes. And in the mountainous region of Samaria, that means a very cold home. We all know what’s it like to come in from the outside on a cold and windy day and find the comfort of a warm, heated room, Imagine what it must be like for a family to come in from the cold and find their house as cold as it is outside. And some of these families don’t even have proper warm clothing or blankets to offer extra warmth during the harsh season.
We have to help these needy families of Samaria get through Israel’s cold season with ease. You can help us provide blankets, radiators, and heaters to those who need it most. There are still dozens of families just like the one described in the above letter in need of our help. With more than 200,000 Jews living in Samaria today, and approximately 45,000 under the jurisdiction of the Samaria Regional Council, about a third of these families live below the poverty line. You can bless struggling families in Biblical Israel through your donation today.
Throughout this month, you can help provide blankets, radiators, and heaters for Samaria’s most needy citizens. As you consider giving to this vital cause, please keep in mind that you are directly touching the lives of parents, teens, senior citizens and babies who desperately need your help.
Whether they are facing medical crises like the family in the above letter or are out of a job and looking for temporary relief, they are people like you and me who have found themselves in a bind, and are trying to get on their feet. Your donation will not only help keep them warm this winter, but will warm their hearts, restoring their hope for a brighter tomorrow.