ICEJ’S Haifa Home Welcomes Sheila from Ukraine
As a Holocaust Survivor, Shelia (85) had always desired to immigrate to Israel, but her husband saw many difficulties in starting their lives from scratch in a new country, so it never happened. Her husband passed away 12 years ago, and Shelia had already suffered the loss of their only daughter many years ago. Nothing could have prepared her for what would happen in Ukraine these past months. She was sure that she would die in this war as her hometown, Kharkiv, was bombarded again and again. By a miracle, ICEJ’s partner organization received her address and we were able to rescue her under dire circumstances. At the end of April, Shelia became a resident of our Home. Despite the trauma she has suffered as of late, she already feels at home and is grateful she has gained a “new family.” Shelia is the first of more Survivors from Ukraine whom we hope to welcome soon and give a home and a “family” at the ICEJ Haifa Home for Holocaust Survivors.
The First Outing
In April, the residents were invited to a picnic by a digital advertising analysis company called “AppsFlyer.” They rented a bus and drove the Haifa Home residents to the Louis Promenade up on Mount Carmel, where residents enjoyed the beautiful view over Haifa. Some residents told their stories to the employees, and they were quite pleased. The residents enjoyed the tour, one of the first opportunities to go a little farther out and meet new people since the pandemic hit. They enjoyed good food, pleasant company, and listening ears for their life stories. One resident exclaimed, “The employees of the company really made an effort for us, and I’m glad that people still want to hear our stories after all this time.
A Special Visit
Soldiers from a special unit occasionally visit and play games with the residents. They also talk about their time in the military, their families, and where they are from. In a recent visit, the residents delighted in meeting new people and sharing about their lives in the Haifa Home. They are so proud of these young soldiers who protect Israel day and night. If there would have been an Israel in 1940 and an army to defend her borders, there would not have been a Holocaust.
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