We often share about the many humanitarian aid projects that My Olive Tree sponsors in the nation of Israel and beyond. However the term “Safe House” may be foreign to some, and so today we thought we would share in greater detail about our Jerusalem Safe House Program.
We work with a variety of outreaches that provide housing to young children who have been abandoned and are in need of a safe surrogate family during this vulnerable time in their lives. However, there are many children who, upon leaving the system at the age of 18, are left once again without a place to call home.
Through our partnership with the Bridge To Independence, we provide homes for young men or women who are in need of assistance as they make the transition from childhood into adulthood. Apartments are provided to those who have no family or support system available for the next few pivotal years of their lives.
The age of 18 is when many of these hurting and abandoned young people fall through the cracks. During this time where many of life’s most important choices will be made, they need a safe place to live and grow into greater maturity.
Most of these young people are on active duty as they serve out their mandatory service to the IDF military. The pay is minimal, and it is difficult to afford necessary items like food and clothing, not to mention IDF gear and other on-the-job necessities that are not provided. These homes offer a safe place that ensure a sense of security and stability in their lives—while also allowing some of the normal bills that would be incurred during this time to be less.
Upon arrival into the program, each young person individually agrees upon a personalized development plan with the Bridge to Independence program staff. This plan assists them to grow and mature into responsible Israeli citizens. Upon their release from the program, they leave with many new skills that allow them to lead a stable, productive life—one where they will contribute greatly to society as they begin to take part in Israeli and Jewish community life.
Today, the need for more Safe House apartments is overwhelming. As many young people are graduating daily from adolescent residential care programs, they too will need a safe place to live—a place that can provide a warm, loving environment, along with wise counsel and loving guidance.
As we continue to plant trees in the nation of Israel we not only provide jobs to those who are in need of work, but the rewards that come from their labor produce funds that are making ALL the difference in the lives of young people like these.
When we look into the faces of these men and women we see the vast potential that lies within them. However, we also understand the many obstacles that they face, as well. Many times the difference between these young people and any others is simply a matter of chance.
Much like the olive tree we plant need nurture and support in order to bear fruit in season, so too these young people need our love and guidance during this unique time in their lives. When you plant a tree with My Olive Tree, you are touching the lives of many individuals all across the land of Israel. If you would like to find out how you can make a difference in the lives of these young people [CLICK HERE].