When couples enlarge their families, they usually have one baby
at a time. Today, the rate of twin births in the United States stands at about
1 in 30 babies born. At the Children's Home in Netanya, our family multiplies
overnight. Just before the holidays, 7 new 'sisters' arrived at the home in one
day. Of course, they were not newborns in diapers, they range in age from 5 to
Our program director, Bracha Runes tells us how these lovely
girls arrived, with social workers, to help them acculturate into their new
environment. We learn how the youngest
ones, who are 5 and 5 ½ years old, were quiet and withdrawn. Bracha assessed
that they did not fully understand the negative atmosphere from which they were
removed. After all, for them, it was the 'norm'. She explained further that
such young children cannot fathom why they must be moved to another home, where
strangers would be taking care of them. The other girls were much more understanding.
As is the custom at the Home, the older housemates invite the
newbies to lunch, show them to their rooms, and help them put away the minimal
possessions they had upon arrival. The new girls are then presented a welcome
basket containing toiletries, and cute stuffed animals to put on their beds.
Besides the professional care the new girls receive upon arrival such as educational
assessment, mental health evaluation, medical appointments and new shoes and
clothes, their social adjustments are equally as important.
To reiterate, everyone knows how difficult it is to raise
children from infancy, even in a normal and healthy family setting. So one can
only imagine receiving 7 kids in one day - and unfortunately from tumultuous
and unstable backgrounds. These girls are sometimes either social orphans who
have been abused, neglected, or abandoned, or true orphans who have lost
parents through death from illness or accidents. Bringing up such children is
challenging and requires a team effort.
Between our Programs Director, Educational Advisor, Activities
Director, Social Workers, Housemother and counselors, and with the added warm
welcoming of our housemates, each new arrival was nurtured and given proper
attention on their first day and night in their new Home. In the ensuing days
and weeks, each of the 7 girls were specially observed to make sure that their
transition was smooth.
Lev LaLev is proud of their team in Israel, on site, and its
extending family in the U.S. and abroad. Every one of you, dear friends and
supporters, are part of the team that cares enough to contribute to the healing
of these very special young girls. We are glad to keep you updated on their
progress and achievements, and as we learn more about their great needs.
After almost two months at the Home, we are pleased to report
that these 7 sisters are looking up, with glorious smiles lighting up their