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Sep 10, 2013

PSA: Two Hundred "Sarahs"

"Sarah" is an intelligent, capable and caring mother to 6 lovely kids.

Sarah's was happily married for 14 years to "Yosef", a frum, personable and socially popular professional.  

The family was stable, paying their bills and enjoying their lives in Ramat Beit Shemesh. 

That was last Yom Kippur. 

For Sarah, not 12 months, but twelve long & bitter years seem to have passed since then. 

It began with a formal letter taped onerously to their front door one day. The letter was an eviction notice - giving the family 30 days notice by court order to leave their apartment. 
Phone calls from gruff strangers, at all hours, asking for Sarah, and demanding payment of debts that Sarah was oblivious to. Lawyer's letters and payment demands arrived by mail. 

Gradually, the true picture dawned on Sarah. That these were debts secretly accumulated by Yosef, due to reckless and compulsive gambling. By forgery and fraud, these debts were in Sarah's name. 

Hundreds of thousands of dollars. 

Sarah called Lema'an Achai for help.

Since turning to Lema'an Achai, Sarah and her family have received these services:

1. Legal aid
2. Debt management counseling
3. Careers counseling
4. Professional Retraining course
5. Emotional counseling and support
6. Family therapy
7. Referral to specialist support group for spouses of compulsive gamblers.
8. Referral to an Agunot agency for specialist legal aid.
9. Furniture - Sarah was sleeping on the floor and suffered chronic back pain; a new bed with a matress was provided. 
9. After school tuition for the kids
10. Free dental care (worth thousands of dollars, provided by volunteer dentists) for Sarah and the children
11. Food stamps and deliveries.
12. Blankets for the winter - each child was thrilled as they chose their own blanket. 

And at all times, a listening ear, a shoulder, and practical professional advice from Lema'an Achai's team of experts. 

Though Sarah and her family are not out of the woods, they have been to hell and are out again. Now, there is solid progress on all fronts. Yosef has given a Get. Sarah has a new profession and a new job. Her kids are out of crisis and finding their feet. Sarah can begin to rebuild her family's shattered life. 

Sarah's family is one of two hundred families who turned to Lea'an Achai for help this past year.
Look around at any other city, any other community. 

You will not find another organization like Lema'an Achai.     

Lema'an Achai's holistic range of aid and social services - taking full care of families in crisis and poverty - is unique.

Lema'an Achai receives no government funding or grants - and we rely on private donors/balei batim giving their tzedaka and maaser kesafim. B"H we have a very generous and caring community!  

Unfortunately, the impact of the budget cuts, is already being felt by many families, some of whom have seen a 10% slash in their already low income. Families who were already in crisis are hit hardest; and many families who were getting-by, are now facing financial hardship. 

This year, as Yom Kippur approaches - please remember to give extra generously to Lema'an Achai. 

Your generous donation will help two hundred Sarahs out of their crises.

Tizku lemitzvot & Gemar chatima tova
Avrohom, David and all at Lema'an Achai

R.Avrohom Leventhal             David Morris
Executive  Director                Chairman


Phone: 24/6 - 02-99999.33
Mail: The Lama'an Achai Center, 40/7 Nahal Lachish, 99093, Ramat Beit Shemesh
Donations for Lema'an Achai are tax deductible in Israel, US, UK and Canada - please call for details: 02-9991553.  
You can also donate via your shul Lema'an Achai representative.

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  1. Here is a question, if she could prove that the loans are fraudulent was she still on the hook to pay them? I would think you would not be, its not your fault if someone steals your identity, (even if you are married or related to them)

  2. Hi Zach
    I am not privy to all the details of the case; I understand that Lema'an Achai's legal and financial counseling team worked with "Sarah" and successfully reduced and wiped out the various debts, using both recourse to the law (where feasible and enforceable) and commercial negotiations.


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