08 Sep Just One Life: Supporting and Empowering Expectant Mothers for Over 30 Years
For many women in Israel, where currently, 1.7 million people are living below poverty level, suffering from financial and emotional distress or experiencing medical complications or high-risk pregnancies, the news of a pregnancy is too much to bear. That’s where Nefesh Achat B’Yisrael (Israel), with the financial backing of Just One Life (USA), steps in. Nefesh Achat B’Yisrael (Israel Amutah)/Just One Life (USA 501- C-3) was formed in 1988 by concerned individuals who recognized the need to provide support for expectant mothers in Israel, where financial, social and medical issues can lead to difficult pregnancies. Since its establishment 31 years ago, Just One Life has been instrumental in the births and lives of over 18,500 Israeli children. The key to the organization’s success is that “Through professional counseling, emotional support and financial assistance we provide stability to families who are experiencing turbulence in their lives,” said Rabbi Martin Katz – the USA Executive Vice President of Just One Life since its founding. The social workers and therapists at Just One Life aid approximately 500 families every year. The couples – referred by doctors, social workers, nurses and welfare offices come from all over Israel and from a broad range of backgrounds. Veteran social worker Chaya Katzin (Israel director) and her team of social workers and therapists, typically meet expectant women at the welcoming Just One Life office on Jerusalem’s King George Street where they speak about their challenges. She urges them to consider their options, as well as the types of assistance that would alleviate their pressures. What the women share in common is that all face limited incomes, stressful family situations or health issues. A pregnancy only adds to their long roster of challenges. “Helping women process their choices and empowering them to understand their strengths is the goal of our intervention. We try to bring down the crisis level and arm women with the skills they need to more easily manage their lives,” Chaya explains. Women that come to Nefesh Achat B’Yisrael do not encounter any anti-abortion propaganda from the organization. Instead, they are encouraged to talk about what they would need in order to raise a child. Just One Life has earned praise for the organization’s three decades of success in bringing Jewish life into the world. “Your work for Jewish families is fundamental to the future and well-being of the Jewish people,” wrote Mr. Dani Danon – the Israel Ambassador to the UN. “Bringing Just One Life to Israel was an important development, and brought the issue of raising Jewish children straight to the heart of the Jewish world.” The children who have been born with the support of Just One Life are now taking their rightful places in society. Many have grown up to serve in the Israel Defense Forces, attend Torah institutions and universities and have families of their own. “In the 31 years since the organization has been helping women have their babies, nobody has ever come back to complain,” recounts Katz. “But many have returned to give thanks. They say, `I can’t imagine what my life would be like without my children.’” As chairman and co-founder of JOL and Nefesh Achat for 31 years, I, Jack Forgash, would be remiss if I did not give praise and recognition to the professional manner in which the directors and social workers have given care and compassion to the mothers and the 18,500 plus children born in Israel. Even now during this pandemic hospital nurses and social workers who are overwhelmed are calling upon Nefesh Achat to take on additional cases.
ISRAEL’S MOST PRECIOUS RESOURCE = ITS CHILDREN for more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 2126836040