Hear It Directly From Rachel

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My name is Rachel and I am a single mother of five children, ages 14, 11, 9, 7, and 5. Their father left us four and a half years ago, providing no support since then.
Israeli Single-mother Family

My name is Rachel and I am a single mother of five children, ages 14, 11, 9, 7, and 5. Their father left us four and a half years ago, providing no support since then. Neither has his family. My family provides limited help.  By Gd’s grace, I own half of the house where we live, but I’m still in the middle of a court settlement to stay there. 

I take any job I can get that doesn’t stop me from taking good care of my five children. These include working as a seamstress for the past 15 years, but it’s not enough to support us. Looking for ways to generate more income in less time, I started managing vacation apartments. This way I can choose when to do the work.  I also learned to do many types of home repairs and sometimes work as a handy woman. Finally, I became a certified practitioner of a healing method that helped me heal from my trauma.  This earned me clients, but still isn’t enough to support  my children and be a good mother to them.

Then came Corona

Tourists stopped coming to Israel, so the vacation apartment business ended completely. In lock down, I couldn’t go out to do home repairs or take in sewing repairs.

Now I have to depend almost entirely on what I receive from the government, which is less than $1,000 per month. Every month I struggle to cover expenses for food and utilities and never have enough money to buy my kids the shoes and clothes they need badly.

Because of the trauma my children experienced, they need therapy to heal.

How can one person possibly do it all?

I really don’t know what I would do without outside help from generous donors from various organizations.  One of the biggest problems that I and other single mothers face is not having enough money to raise our kids properly.

 My favorite organization is Keren L’bodedot Imahot B’yisroel. More than any other organization, they really understand the challenges I go through. They tell me to buy myself something nice for the holidays, because when children see their mother happy, it makes them happy. Before, I never bought myself anything because I never had enough for what the kids needed.

I really don’t know how I would make it without the help that charities distribute for the major holidays.  New clothes, special foods, treats, and fun things to do all cost money.  Knowing that I will get help around the holidays makes me feel more at ease. It helps my children feel more like other children, too.

 Keren L’bodedot Imahot B’yisroel treats us with dignity and does not make me feel like I’m less than anyone else. They are one of the few organizations that understand that financial aid is the most important help that single-mother families in Israel need.

My fears around Corona are not about catching the virus, but about how I can make a living and take care of five children.

International tourism is dead. My children were home much of the time, making it impossible to work outside the house and difficult to work inside. Even if I work outside, when the children are home from school, I still only have to help them with schoolwork, make sure they don’t hurt each other, feed them and manage our house.  With no breaks, no help, and no work, what can I do? 

Since Covid-19 struck, I went into heavy debt, despite all my efforts not to.

Single mothers in Israel are struggling to raise healthy and happy children while trying to make a living, but it isn’t always possible.

One mother I know had to quit her full-time job because it prevented her from supporting her children’s mental health. She received no child support from their father. Unfortunately, by the time she realized that the family was better off receiving a small amount of government aid rather than her working all day long and not being available to mother her children, her children suffered from depression ADD, and trauma, and were taking medication regularly.

I hope you understand how much single mothers need financial help to raise healthy, upright, and happy children.

I don’t want my children to just get by; I want my children to thrive!

Please help them have the chance that they can’t have without your help. Please don’t let financial concerns prevent children from thriving.

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There are thousands of Israeli families living below the poverty line, but single parent families are stuck in persistent poverty and receive the least of charity dollars. Support single mother families in Israel so they can enjoy equal opportunity and thrive.

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