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Mission Impossible Completed

In October 2007 a group of World Jewish Relief (Great Britain) staff and volunteers Jimmy and Philippa Strauss, Roz Bluestone, Laurence Ackerman, Natalie Baskin, Rosalind Beckman, Stephen Lewis came to Moldova with a special mission. The long-term partnership between WJR and the Jewish community of Moldova got a new turn. This time two new vans Renault Traffic were brought through Europe to Moldova crossing six borders. These wonderful vans will be used for the clients with limited mobility served by Hesed Yehuda and Jewish Family Service (JFS).

Intensive program of the mission included home visits to Hesed and JFS clients, meetings with the Jewish businessmen and leaders of the Boards and Jewish organizations, participation in the traditional Moldova holiday – Day of Wine, tour of the KJJC, friendly football match with the local Maccabi team, and bright Kabbalat Shabbat together with the KJJC staff and guests.

Of course, the ceremony of presentation vans to Hesed and JFS became the climax of the program.

Over 150 people, including Great Britain Ambassador in Moldova, vice-minister of social protection of Moldova, representatives of the Government, city administration, Jewish and non-Jewish NGOs, mass-media, gathered in the courtyard of the KJJC to witness the solemn ceremony of the vans transfer.

Touching moments of the ribbons cut were entrusted to Mihail, Hesed client, and Alla, JFS client. Dr. Efim Simhovich, KJJC Superboard Chair, Alexander Filippov, Hesed director, and Yulia Sheinman, JFS director said

“Republic of Moldova is a very nice country”, said Mr. John Beyer, Great Britain Ambassador in Moldova “Unfortunately, economy situation in Moldova is not so good at the present time and many people need additional help and care. But I am sure that with time Moldova will be able to help other counties.”

“We are deeply thankful to our friends from WJR, Great Britain and Joint for their constant help and support both to the Jewish and non-Jewish communities and welfare organizations in our country”, said Ion Pacuraru, Moldova Government consultant.

“Meeting the community of the Kishinev KJJC has been one of the most moving experiences of my life”, confessed Natalie Baskin, mission participant. “The comprehensive programs you offer to the whole Jewish community is an example of what can be done with the right amount of support and attention in any community.”

“We are sitting in the most amazing Jewish campus – the KJJC – seeing at first hand the revival of this very old and established Jewish Community, wrote in the Guest Book Philippa Strauss. “This centre is vibrant and full of hope for the future if Moldovan Jewry. We are touched by amazing reception we had yesterday at the distribution ceremony. I had tears in my eyes”.