While Vladimir describes his Ukrainian family as "one of the lucky ones who survived," he still can't hold back tears when he describes the devastation that hit the Jewish communities of Europe during the Holocaust.
"Everyone we loved and shared our lives with was gone, killed just for being Jewish," Vladamir recalls. His family was spared because his father was a locomotive engineer and valuable to the Red Army, who transferred him to Moscow for the duration of the war.
When they returned to Odessa, they were devastated to learn that more than half of the large, thriving Jewish community there had been killed. "The Nazi killing machine was defeated, yet in Ukraine we continued to suffer the consequences of generations' worth of anti-Semitism," Vladimir explains.
Despite the challenges, Vladimir got married, had three children, and worked as a truck driver. Though he and his family were poor, they survived. Finally, in 1993, Vladimir and his wife joined their people in the Holy Land, where they would no longer be looked at as strangers.
Unfortunately, they continued to live in poverty. Advanced in age and unable to speak Hebrew, Vladimir and his wife couldn't work to support themselves and had to rely on a small monthly check from the Israeli government, which was barely enough to live on.
"My wife and I were distraught, and weeks before Passover I could see tears in her eyes as she worried that we had no food to celebrate the holiday," Vladimir says. "The Fellowship's Passover food basket brought us new life. We literally danced when the food arrived!" Reflecting on this and other help they receive from The Fellowship, Vladimir says, "The Fellowship has been a tremendous blessing in my life here in Israel."
When you give to our Passover Campaign, you bless people like Vladimir as you help them experience celebration instead of struggle and love instead of hatred.
And please consider helping impoverished Holocaust survivors like Vladimir throughout the year by becoming one of our monthly supporters.