Faces of The Fellowship: Ratibor

 |  January 14, 2016

A young boy, named Ratibor who is an IFCJ recipient with his head tilted as classmates behind him have snack time.

Ratibor, who’s in the 8th grade, and his sister Arina, who’s in 4th grade, are being raised in Kyrgyzstan by their single mom. Because she experienced anti-Semitism within her own marriage, she had a strong desire to tell her children about their Jewish roots. A friend told her about the Fellowship-supported ORT Jewish school, and she was delighted to be able to send both of her children there.

When political unrest hit Kyrgyzstan, it wasn’t safe in their city. There were riots, threats to Jews, and even an attempted terrorist act on the city’s synagogue. While friends warned their mother of the risk of her kids being at a Jewish school, she had confidence in the security The Fellowship provides for the school.

As the threats have increased, so have the Fellowship-supported security measures. In 2014, an electronic fence was erected around the school. ORT has its own secure transportation for students, and the loading and unloading of the vehicles are carefully monitored. “I never doubt that my children are safe within the walls of the school,” Ratibor’s mom said.

The school also provides nutritious, kosher meals for the students. Ratibor’s mom works long hours to provide for their family, but she takes comfort in the school’s good care of her children. “The care The Fellowship provides has given a future to our family. Thank you!”