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Dovid: A Survivor's Story

Dovid was only 19 years old when the Nazis invaded his native Poland in 1939. Since his family was Jewish he, his parents, and four sisters were sent to concentration camps. While reluctant to speak about the horrors he experienced, he does tell of witnessing Nazi SS officers shooting and killing prisoners "for the fun of it."

Surrounded by death, Dovid turned to God, the source of all life. He told a Fellowship representative, "I've come to the conclusion that I survived because of my faith. I kept repeating the biblical verse from Psalm 118, 'I shall not die, but I will live.'" Dovid did indeed live, but 39 members of his extended family were murdered by the Nazis.

After the war, Dovid married. When the state of Israel was born in 1948, both he and his wife knew that this was where they wanted to spend the rest of their lives. Once in Israel, Dovid was able to make a living as a carpenter, and, later, as a teacher of carpentry. The couple enjoyed a comfortable but modest life and were very happy.

When Dovid retired he and his wife were able to make do on their small government pensions. But when she died several years ago, everything changed. "There was no longer enough money to pay the bills," Dovid says. "Worse than that, I just didn't know what to do with myself. All I could do was think about my wife." Now in his twilight years, Dovid's peace was shattered. He struggled with both poverty and depression.

Help came to Dovid through a program, funded by The Fellowship's Guardians of Israel, that assists poor elderly and disabled Israelis by providing them with meaningful work creating paper products. This program provides Dovid with a renewed sense of pride and achievement as well as providing him a much-needed social outlet where he can meet people his own age. Along with this, a small monthly stipend helps Dovid with his financial needs, while free dental and eye treatments help greatly by lowering his monthly medical bills.

The program has given Dovid a new lease on life. "This place saves me," he says. "I'm doing creative work and it helps me make ends meet - I don't know what I'd do without it." Please give generously to this program that provides people who have suffered much with a measure of support and comfort in their later years.