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Jewish People Fleeing for their Lives

September 9, 2014
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The war in Ukraine is putting more and more Jewish people at risk. Over 1,200 hundred are now living like refugees in other parts of Ukraine, after fleeing from their homes. Our Project Rescue team is hard at work to assist as many as possible, while it is still possible.

The Yarovey family safe in Kiev Tolik and Katya Yaroviy and their two sons have recently arrived in Israel, with our help. They, like many others, had wavered as they weighed their options. Desperately hoping to be able stay in their home, they kept thinking that the current horror would cease. But, they didn’t wake up and discover it was some frightening nightmare. First, electricity was cut off, then running water. They had no mobile cellular connections. Still, they hoped these desperate times would soon become a memory. When they began to experience regular bombing, they realized that they had to leave. They finally decided to go to Israel for the sake of their children. They almost waited too long.

Leaving was not easy for Tolik, Katya and their sons. All public transport had stopped; enemy forces and terrorists blocked all the main roads. So, they picked up their four bags and walked through fields. They could only take the most necessary things.

According to our Project Rescue worker, “They made the long journey to Kiev (900 km [560 mi] from their home) where they could get visas to go to Israel. We rented a room for them in a cozy house and provided them with care, food and advice. They were ready to leave 18 days later and I drove them to the airport with great joy.”

As our Project Rescue worker was driving them to the airport, she looked at the four suitcases and asked how many toys they brought for their children. Katya answered that they managed to take only a favorite teddy bear for one son and a teddy dog for another. At first they forgot the stuffed toys and remembered only when they were a distance from their home. With a mother’s love, Katya decided to return for the toys, even at risk of her life. You see, these toys were the only things they had left from their previous home.

Tolik and Katya are some of the fortunate ones; they are in Israel now and beginning their new life. Please pray for them as they struggle to learn Hebrew, find jobs and become adjusted to their new home.

Project Rescue Assists 1,756 Ukrainian Jews This Year

Arrival in Israel, greeted by Jewish Agency representative Since the conflict began, we have helped 1,756 Ukrainian Jews escape, many of them from active war zones, and relocate in Israel. Each one of them has a story. All have fled with not much more than the clothes on their backs, bringing only one suitcase per person (20 kg—53 lb maximum). They have left homes, furniture, and appliances—literally everything and must start over in a new land. Many of them arrived in Israel as the war with Hamas raged. They need our prayer as they recover from the trauma, and find hope for a better future in their ancient homeland—Israel.

We work with our partner organization, Ezra Foundation, and the Jewish Agency to assist the Jewish people of Ukraine. Jewish Agency Chairman, Natan Sharansky was from one of the embattled areas of Ukraine and has a heart to rescue his people. “Today we are fulfilling that sacred mission in Ukraine and we will continue to do whatever we can to ensure that Jews are safe and secure no matter where they are.”

According to Jewish Agency figures, the number of new immigrants from Ukraine has more than tripled since the beginning of the year, reaching some 2,000 individuals by the end of July, compared to 600 during the equivalent period in 2013.

We Were Created for Such a Time as This!

“Death to Jews” graffiti in Ukraine I often reflect that God could have chosen any time in history for us to be born. He chose this time. He has a purpose for each of us. Not since the Second World War have we seen the levels of anti-Semitism that are exhibited today. Jewish people are at risk in many locales. In such a terrible time as this, I believe God is calling His Church to help the Jewish people come home in fulfillment of Bible prophecy. What a privilege to assist Him in His plan to bring the Jewish people home to Israel.

Thank you for all your support for this project. Together we are saving lives and giving Jewish families hope for the future.

According to the World Jewish Congress about 275,000 Jewish people remain in the Ukraine. They are frightened. Increasingly they are realizing that they need to leave quickly—to save their families from disaster. We covet your prayers as we work to rescue them. Once they arrive in Israel we welcome them with gifts for their homes. Over and over our team has heard heartbreaking stories of the conditions they left. Most of them literally locked the doors to their homes and escaped with the small amount they could carry on their person. We want to help them in the first tenuous year of their time in Israel.

We need your help to continue this blessed work. Please choose the way you would like to help new immigrants:

  1. Help them to escape with Project Rescue
  2. Welcome them in their new home—Immigrant Welcome Gift Program
  3. Assist with special needs—Immigrant Fund
  4. Sponsor a family or individual for a year through our Adoption Program  

I pray that God will give us the courage, the resources and the time to rescue His people from their enemies.

Blessings from Israel,

Rebecca J. Brimmer
International President and CEO

Photo Credit: By Viktor Mykhaytov

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