«Jewish Observer»
March 2002
5762 Adar

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When we pronounce such words as the "boarding house for elderly" we imagine the gloomy picture of a state establishment with walls painted in dark colors, heartless and cruel treatment of the medical staff, bent and humiliated people who have to exist without any hope for home, warmth and care. So you won't find all this in Dnepropetrovsk. There is no boarding house for elderly there. There is the boarding Home for elderly and those who live there are not clients and patients. They are residents of this home. It is their home made like in a fairy-tale in order to give them a worthy rest.

It is the word "fairy-tale" that you hear mostly talking to the residents of this wonderful Home.

A nice feeling of rest and peace captures every person who crosses the threshold of this beautiful building, located in ecologically non-polluted district of Dnepropetrovsk. Spacious corridors, comfortable rooms, which would get the better of any luxurious hotel (two-bed rooms, but you can even find here one-bed rooms, a shower, a toilet, each room has a wash-stand) the beautiful hall, the library, the gym and a winter garden. All these belong to them, to people of a hard destiny. They were tortured, they suffered from ordeal, they lost all their relatives. Now they have only one family, which is the Jewish community. As in every family we respect parents and give them the best. The wonderful old people's home is the confirmation of this. Today different works are under completion in the boarding home. It is the decorating of the winter garden, the compilation of the library and improvement of the adjacent territory.

First residents have already arrived. "We couldn't wait any minute" - the Chief Rabbi of Dnepropetrovsk Shmuel Kaminetsky said. Every following day, even every minute would have made them suffer more if these people had lived in those terrible conditions in which they had happened to be. This is their Home and we offered them to change their place of residence.

This generous project was realized with the help of Dnepropetrovsk Jewish community (Genadiy Bogolyubov, the President of the Trustee Board) and the World Jewish Organization of Aid and Consolation (Eliezer Avtson, the President). The result was above any praise. In every corner of the Home one feels love and care of inspirers and executives of this project. Everything was considered in detail. There are four medical posts working all day round, Italian equipment in the dining-hall, special hand-rail for elderly people... And old men's and women's faces become bright and tears of happiness begin rolling. And they smile. They cannot believe in this miracle yet. They are afraid that it is a dream, that they wake up, finding themselves in former lodgings, without light, heat and without friends... But it is not a dream. It is a real miracle, one of those which we make when we are together with the help of God. When a Jew knows that he is not alone then he is responsible for everybody, and everybody is responsible for him.


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