Melina's four children used to beg her to buy meat, but then they realized that whenever she did their electricity would be turned off that month. "I do everything I can to be the best mother possible, but the bills are just too much," she explains.
Married shortly after finishing high school, Melina's life took a turn for the worse shortly after she became pregnant. Her husband began going out alone in the evenings. "When I told him this wasn't right, he became violent," she explains.
He promised never to do it again, and Melina wanted to believe him. Unfortunately, the beatings continued over the next three years, even as she gave birth to their first three children.
"One day, while I was pregnant with my youngest, I was beaten so badly I nearly lost the baby. I was in the hospital for four months until my daughter was born. My ex-husband was put in jail and I decided I would never return to him."
Because she doesn't have a college degree, Melina's work options are limited. She's always taken care of people, so she registered with an agency to take care of elderly nursing clients. The work is difficult, the hours are long, and the money still isn't enough. "I sleep on a broken old couch that's about to collapse, and I buy vegetables from the market at the end of the day when prices go down before the food is thrown out."
When told she would receive a Fellowship food card to buy meat and other provisions for Rosh Hashanah, Melina was overjoyed. "My youngest son asked me, ‘Why do we need help from people?' I answered him, ‘We just don't have enough to do it all on our own. Thank God there are good people who want to help us.'"
When you give to our High Holy Days Campaign, you help ensure that Jews in Israel and the former Soviet Union will receive food boxes or food cards that will alleviate their hunger, help them celebrate these holy days in obedience to Scripture, and remind them they, too, have friends around the world who are there to help them.