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Isaiah 58 Helps a Family Ravaged by Alcoholism and Abuse

When Olga was born five years ago in Ukraine, her family was happy. Her mother was a baker for a private bakery and her father was a mechanic for an agricultural firm. Problems entered their home virtually unnoticed.

In just a few years her father's habit of having a drink before bed transformed him from a skilled expert to an unemployed drunkard. He also became physically abusive to both Olga and her mother. Because Olga's mother was too ashamed to go out in public covered in bruises, she wound up losing her job — and the family wound up in dire poverty.

Olga's father took anything of monetary value to trade for alcohol, so the family survived on the potatoes, vegetables, and sometimes bread their neighbors graciously gave them. When Olga's father sold their wedding rings to get more alcohol money, Olga's mother finally sent him to get medical treatment for his alcoholism. Thankfully, the treatment was effective.

The family is now trying to work their way out of utter poverty. Olga's father found a job as a security guard at a local factory, and her mother works part-time at a bakery, a job she hopes will soon lead to fulltime employment. Though they both earn an income, their household is still lacking virtually everything. Still, things are so much better now that Olga's father no longer drinks and there's no more violence, yelling, or scandal.

When Olga and her mother were invited to pick up a package of food aid, funded by The Fellowship's Isaiah 58 program, the woman was shy and embarrassed to accept the gift. But she agreed to accept the aid because her daughter is in such need of quality nutrition.

Everyone who was present when the mother and daughter came to pick up the food package could see that Olga had a deep and serious look that is not typical for a five-year-old child. It was only when her mother handed her a piece of candy, presented among the gifts, that the little girl grinned and uttered a quiet "thank you" to the community workers.

Her mother echoed this sentiment, offering her heartfelt gratitude to Rabbi Eckstein and The Fellowship's donors, and pledging that, along with this help, the family will do their best to improve their situation and live in a better way.

To a needy family like this, a helping hand, like that provided by Isaiah 58, is a godsend. Be a part of this compassionate work by making a lifesaving gift to Isaiah 58.

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