The most celebrated holiday among Jewish families is Passover. This seven-day celebration is a time to remember the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt, the 40 years of their wandering in the desert, and the miracle that they are still a people and nation today.
The nation of Israel is going through difficult and turbulent times these days. Now, more than ever, it is important that we remember that we are one nation. Unity is a necessity, especially in the face of challenges. Unity requires us to be inclusive, give mutual respect and compassion, and help those in need.
While we are all running around going to stores, choosing another outfit, and buying more ingredients for another meal or dessert, many families barely have enough money for food. Those that are suffering from poverty don't even dream of setting a dignified holiday table, and certainly not wearing festive clothes at the dinner table.
Vision for Israel takes care of these families during the holiday, and every year gives them gift cards to purchase food and clothing for the holiday.
This year, we made it a goal to give out 1000 gift cards. Thanks to your generous contributions, we were able to meet this goal and distributed about 1000 gift cards in many cities across the country. The donations went to families in need, lone soldiers, Holocaust survivors, and victims of hostilities.
When you read about the number of the poor and needy in Israel, it is hard to imagine the faces behind the numbers. It is important for us as an organization to meet the people in person, get to know them, hear their stories, and lend an ear and a supportive shoulder.
At the distribution points, we met wonderful people who shared their life stories with us:
A mother of five children, in her thirties, told us that she has to support her family alone because her husband has cancer. We were grateful to be able to help this woman and her family, especially during the holiday.
A father of a family underwent 11 surgeries and recently had open-heart surgery. It is very difficult for him to get around, and he needs a lot of help. He thanked us for the assistance both in the past and this year.
A separated father of two children suffers from many health problems and lives only on the National Insurance stipend. Some of his health issues include lung failure, throat surgery, including a tube that was inserted into his throat, and many surgeries on his legs, some of which failed, and he still needs more surgeries. His condition is very serious, and he is in excruciating pain. He thanked us for the assistance and told us that our help has truly saved his life.
This Passover let us stand with those in need by making an extra effort to help them to celebrate this holiday with joy and dignity. This is our contribution to the unity of the people of Israel!
We pray for you to celebrate this Passover with joy, abundance, and unity!