Brothers Micah,* 17, and Joseph,* 14, never imagined that tragedy would strike their lives. Nor did they ever expect to find the loving kindness that has given them strength.

Micah and Joseph’s father had been sick for years

Five years ago, Micah had just begun Boys Town Jerusalem (BTJ) Junior High when his young father became gravely ill. “Both parents soon lost their jobs, and overnight this happy, successful family became poverty-stricken,” explains BTJ Principal Rabbi Yehudah Rosencrantz. By last year when Joseph began Grade 7, their father had undergone two kidney transplants in three years, and his lethal cancer had been discovered. Last month, he died.

Generous donors have been supporting the boys for years

After first mobilizing to help Micah, the school broadened its assistance to the entire family over the years to come. “There was no food at home and no money,” recalls Rabbi Rosencrantz. “We turned for help to Boys Town Jerusalem donors across the globe, whose generosity was a lifesaver.”

Beyond providing food for the family, donors have enabled BTJ to suspend tuition fees, provide clothing, books, extracurricular activities, summer camp, intensive counselling and other boons for Micah and Joseph. During the Covid school closure, computers were contributed to enable the boys to study via Zoom.

Making every effort to give them strength

Poignantly, the school recently hired an eleventh-grader who had lost his own father to become a tutor and friend to Micah. The very day after the shiva mourning week ended, Joseph began BTJ Summer Camp, and Micah joined the BTJ student work crew. “The boys’ healing process has begun,” Rabbi Rosencrantz notes. “Our school, together with our donors, is making every effort to help give them strength.”

*name changed for annonymity

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