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With the assistance of nine Dutch people and one Belgian, we packed 1,800 food parcels between December 12 and December 19, 2015! Shortly before this working trip, we handed out food parcels in Eastern Ukraine, assisted by two co-workers.
As usual, our journey started in Kiev where we learned more about the blood bath that took place at Babi Yar, close to the center of Kiev on September 19, 1941. The Chief Rabbi of Kiev, Johathan Markovich and his wife Ina, were present as well. Approximately 100,000 Jews were shot and killed in this ravine. There was little chance of surviving this atrocity.
Next we had a tour in a Jewish school where the children are prepared to go to Israel on an Aliyah study program when they reach the right age. On the way to Vinnitsa, in the Western Ukraine, we stopped in Berdichev to collect 700 kosher cakes from a Jewish baker! I placed the order too late – a few minutes before Shabbat – but Rubin the baker said: ‘I will do my best!’ And, as a matter of fact, the order was completed in time, ready to be added to the food parcels!
Rev Henk Poot, Israel preacher at Christians for Israel, visited Ukraine for the first time and we all enjoyed his biblical knowledge. And when the food parcels had to be packed, Henk turned out to be a wonderful help among the others! On Monday, December 14, we packed 1,800 food parcels, assisted by local volunteers and in the following days we distributed them! The temperature was very low, but the sun was shining brightly!
On Tuesday, December 15, we unveiled a Holocaust monument in a small village close to the city of Bratslav. The monument was officially unveiled by Nellie and Willem Vlak, visiting Ukraine for the first time as well. It was a special and emotional experience for them. Here, 400 Jews were either shot or buried alive! Now, more than seventy years later, finally a monument is erected to commemorate the victims of this horrific event!
Everywhere we delivered food parcels there was a celebration. The poor Jews in the small Jewish communities are actually having difficult times indeed and they are tremendously grateful for any kind of help. The kosher cakes on the side were a lovely surprise! But we always share the message about ‘going back’, and give useful advice and tips! And we read from the Prophets as well!
In the evenings we were used to relax with some music, enjoy good Ukrainian food and had time for some catching up. A lot of things happened during the Holocaust in Ukraine of which too little is still unknown in Western Europe!
On Friday, December 18, the last day we were supposed to hand out food parcels in different small groups, we were bothered by black ice. But fortunately they scattered sand here and there so we were able to drive all the same.
On the last evening we all enjoyed an elaborate meal and were surprised by the ‘Simcha’ group who sang for us in Yiddish, Hebrew and Russian! It was time to go and it was difficult for the group to say goodbye to us! We joked about “back to reality” and “let my Dutch/Belgian people go”!
Shortly before parting at the airport in Kiev, we all thanked the Lord for His protection during the many trips we made! Food parcels will be handed out until the end of the year and we will continue to do so next year. And again plan another action in Eastern Ukraine, where the war is still waging!
The next working trip will take place from March 12 through 19, 2016. Places are limited! More information can be obtained at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Koen Carlier – Aliyah Field Worker
Christians for Israel
We pack and distribute thousands of food parcels for poor Jewish families and refugees all over the Ukraine. This is really a great help especially in these uncertain times.
Please support the food parcel activity. One food parcel costs a mere 10 euros or 12 US $ . This will make a poor Jewish family in Ukraine very grateful, and afford us the opportunity to tell them about God’s promise to return to the Promised Land, while offering them our services in preparing for Aliyah.
Donate in € for the Ukrainian food parcels
|Donate in US $ for the Ukrainian food parcels|
For an impression of this working trip watch the photos below.
Ready to fill the food parcels
Volunteers from the Netherlands
In total we need top pack 1,800 food parcels
Nearly finished packing
1,800 Food parcels packed and ready to be distributed
Ready to load the first 150 food parcels
150 Food parcels loaded and ready to be distributed
Waiting in line to get a needed food parcel
Starting to unload in the former Stettl of Bratslav
Time to relax with a good Ukrainian meal
Unloading food parcels in the former stettl of Tulchin
Monument for the children in Pechora, babies and children were buried alive
Rita Schweibes is telling her story, she survived the deathcamp of Pechora.
Official unveiling of a Holocaust monument close to the village of Marksovo 7km from Bratslav
Faina responsible for the Jewish Community in Bratslav sharing a poem
Rev Henk Poot reading from the Bible.
Willem and Nellie Vlak unveil the Holocaust monument in a village near Bratslav.
Prayer at the Holocaust monument
Recently unveiled Holocaust monument sponsored by Christians for Israel
The Belgian and Dutch working teams.
Inside the synagoge of the former stettl of Berschad
Jewish lady from Berschad waiting for her food parcel
The oldest synagoge in Berschad made from West and Eastern Europe clay
Inside the synagogue of Berschad
Joyfully the Jews of Berschad receive a food parcel plus a kosher cake
Visiting an elderly Jewish lady
Icy and slippery roads
Simcha singing in Jiddish, Hebrew and Russian