The Jewish children of Ukraine find themselves in a very perilous situation, both physically and spiritually. The upheaval that is affecting the goings on in that country is having a very detrimental effect on the Jewish population in general and on the children in particular. The vibrant religious life that has been flourishing in Kiev, Odessa and other cities in the region in recent years has come under a lot of strain now due to the political realities. Anti-Semitism is rampant- more than usual- as the unfortunate yet “natural” response of any political chaos is to blame the Jews and make their lives miserable. Rioting, robberies and even bodily harm has befallen our fellow Jews in the Ukraine in recent months due to its squabbles with Russia,
The United Jewish Communities of Eastern Europe & Asia (UJCEEA), the organization that tirelessly works to care for and educate the Yidden of that region has gone into overdrive to assure that the Jewish community – most importantly, the Jewish children- are able to thrive despite what’s going on around them.
One of the chief ways to insulate the children from the difficulties they encounter is to ensure that they attend a summer camp, away from the hubbub of the city, away from the damaging environment of the chaos and away from the worrisome decline in religiosity which so often is a result of their parents’ fear of participating in the community’s spiritual happenings during a time of strife.
Camp Shuva, the camp founded and run by UJCEEA, is a spiritually pure oasis, a fun and exciting full-fledged camp program that serves hundreds of Jewish children from the region. Not only do they enjoy a few weeks respite from the storm at home, they are inculcated during this summer experience with the tools and resources to remain steadfastly religious Jews even beyond their time in the camp. Many of the children go on to become spiritual anchors of their families and communities. The short camp experience turns into long life experiences for them, their siblings, their extended families and their entire communities. The life that is infused into them by Camp Shuva, translates into a life of Torah and Mitzvos beyond anyone’s wildest imagination.
Children who attend Camp Shuva, which is available at no cost to the parents, go on to study in mainstream Yeshivos in Europe, Eretz Yisroel and in the USA and have their entire lives – and the lives of their children after them- totally revamped due to the fact that they had the opportunity to attend Camp Shuva.
Who enables Camp Shuva to exist? Who sponsors the heavy cost of running such a vital camp in such a volatile region of the world? Who shoulders the burden of these, our dear brethren, in areas far from the comfort of our shores?
The answer is: Those who care! Yidden, from America and around the world who care about Acheinu Bnei Yisroel do their part to not turn away and ignore the plight of Ukraine Jewry. Yidden who understand that the initiative launched by UJCEEA to send hundreds of Jewish children to what can literally be called “an experience of a lifetime” due to its powerful life-changing direction it encourages for virtually all who attend, are the ones saving these Neshamos.
The Lakewood community is no different! The Lakewood community cares! The Lakewood community is ready to answer the call and attend the “BBQ Event” that will be more than just delicious food and a night out, It will be an expression of “We Care!”, a loud and clear declaration of our undertaking to do whatever we can to ensure that these children, like or own children, are afforded the opportunities to be Bnei Torah and raise families of their own Al Derech HaTorah!
“The BBQ Event” will take place on Wednesday evening, July 16th at the home of noted Askan, Meir Cohen, 1168 Evergreen (off of Chestnut). The event will feature heartfelt words from Rav Yaakov Bleich, Chief Rabbi of the Ukraine. All are encouraged to attend and participate and help Camp Shuva in its holy mission.
Attend. Show YOU Care!
Visit the website here.