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Rami came to us when he was in first grade. Back then, he was a quiet and insecure child who hardly made social connections. At schools, he had substantial learning difficulties and studied in a special education class.  

 

Rami’s mother, Hakma, raises eight children by herself. Rasha, the father of the family, has a second wife and six more children with her. Because of the rampant polygamy, many mothers are left alone with multiple children with no support. The relationship between Hakma and Rasha is very conflictive and with almost no communication. He doesn’t work, rarely comes to visit his children, and is unwilling to divorce. Even threatens to take the children from her, because according to Islam, they automatically fall into the father’s custody after divorce.  

 

Rami’s family survives with the benefits Hakma receives from the Social Security Services, which are merely enough for their needs. They live in a stone house, scanty and with almost no furniture. They sleep all together on mattresses on the floor; there is no shower, so the children bathe in a tub with water boiled in the fire because there is no electricity. They feed mainly on dry food, and occasionally Hakma buys fresh groceries in the village store. 

 

Hakma is a warm mother who gives her children everything she can, according to her capacity and situation. She is a simple woman with no formal education to help her children in their studies. 

 

 

After a year of having Rami in the afterschool center with us, the Ministry of Welfare also cared for two of his younger brothers. Yassin and Kamil sadly lag considerably behind their peers in school. As said before, the children don’t have someone at home to help them promote their education. 

 

Our afterschool center in Abu Krinat provides these three lovey children with the warm home they desperately need. They receive a hot meal every day, enrichment, counselors who help them with their homework, and additional tutors specialized in math, English, and Hebrew. We work together with their teachers all year, monitoring their improvement and creating a tailored program for each child. 

 

Rami and his brothers also receive emotional support from a social worker who helps them navigate their lives and hardships. Our center is a place of happiness, play, and love. The children enjoy fun activities, field trips, arts and crafts, music, sports, and, most important, care, support, and an attentive ear. 

 

Rami thrives in the center! He has made deep connections with the staff, the tutors, and the guides or “house mothers” (as we like calling them). He has also made true friends who love him very much. SOS has helped him open up and share his inner world with the social worker, which took a heavyweight from his heart and allowed him to be a happier child.   

 

Rami participates in all activities and comes to the center every day. Since the Coronavirus crisis started, the children his age study through remote learning most of the time, but in the Bedouin communities, the lack of technology prevents them from attending to it. Therefore, we decided to open our centers in the mornings instead of afternoons, enabling them to study with the tutors, do their homework, and overcome the existing gaps. Rami doesn’t miss one day; he enjoys learning and spending time with his friends. In his own words, “This is my favorite place in the world.” 

 

Today, after four years with us, Rami has changed beyond recognition. From a timid and insecure child, he flourished to a confident and happy boy. He learned how to make his voice heard and fight for things that matter to him. Rami also participates in group therapy, taking an active part in meetings, and has significantly improved his studies. 

 

After four years with us, it’s incredible to see Rami; he is now a cheerful and popular child loved by both the staff and the other children. He respects everyone around him, never picks a fight with other kids, and cooperates in all the activities. We are so proud of him!  

Children tell

Rami

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The Israeli Association of Children’s Villages SOS provides a warm home for children at risk in Israel, psychological support, academic

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