Faces of The Fellowship: Maya

The Fellowship  |  August 17, 2016

Maya, an elderly Jewish woman smiling up in a white sweater featured in an IFCJ promotion.
Faces of The Fellowship: Maya

Maya recently celebrated her 92nd birthday. “Oh, I wish I could just decide to go on living, and it would happen,” says Maya.

Not that Maya’s life is easy. After falling and breaking both of her legs, Maya is now confined to her small, two-room apartment. She struggles to walk around her home and must use a bulky walker. The only fresh air she gets is from her tiny balcony.

The flat is clean and nearly empty. Her furniture is old and torn.

Decades ago, she lost her 20-year-old son. He had an accident while serving in the Soviet army, but the army refused to tell Maya the details of the accident. “We brought his body to Kiev and buried him in the military cemetery, a very beautiful cemetery,” Maya says.

Maya also has a daughter and two grandchildren who live in a village near Kiev. “I don’t want to move to my daughter’s house because I won’t be useful there,” explains Maya. “I don’t want to be burden.”

Maya’s daughter visits frequently, bringing her mother home-cooked food. But she cannot help much more than that as she is struggling financially too.

The Fellowship has stepped in to fill the void, providing Maya with a homecare worker who visits on a daily basis. “When I first broke my legs, I got in touch with The Fellowship,” says Maya. “The Fellowship immediately provided me with everything I needed!

“My homecare worker is now my best friend. The woman at the local Fellowship-sponsored Hesed office is amazing as well. She calls me every now and again to ask me how I am feeling, or if I need anything. She is so nice, and so attentive!”

Since it is hard for Maya to move around, we gave her a Fellowship emergency bracelet, which includes a button she can press that provides her with immediate access to a doctor, ambulance, and anything else she needs in an emergency situation.

In addition to homecare, The Fellowship provides Maya with hygiene items and a bank card. In the winter, we help cover her heating bills, and this past year, we gave her bedding and clothing to keep warm.

“I don’t know how I would survive without The Fellowship,” says Maya.

Learn how you can help impoverished elderly people in need like Maya receive the lifesaving care they deserve.