‹ Back to Learn

Honoring the Heroes of Israel // Reaching Holocaust Survivors

Israel Today, Member Monday

Seemingly, Holocaust Survivors and Singaporeans do not have much in common.

Separated by distance – Singapore, an island in Southeast Asia, is about 6 thousand miles away from Europe, where the worst of the Holocaust took place – the two people groups would not have been instinctively linked. While the Jewish people suffered at the hand of the Nazis, during World War 2 the residents of Singapore had to resist the Japanese invasion.

Nevertheless, mutual support between the Jewish and the Singaporean people became evident when both sought national independence in the middle of the twentieth century.

The modern State of Israel was just 17 years young when it offered support to strengthen Singapore’s security at its rise to independence in 1965.

This significant relationship was especially highlighted a couple years ago in Jerusalem, when the Prime Minister of Singapore visited Israel, first one in his position to do so.

The political ties, though profoundly significant, still cannot compare to the relationships established at the level of the heart.

This November, by the invitation of FIRM, representatives of seven Singaporean churches joined hands with Reach Initiative International to bless Holocaust survivors living in Israel. Accompanied by lots of music and dancing, the unlikeliest of friends enjoyed a meal together, shared their stories and blessed one another.

The event was also a tangible testimony to the work of the Reach Initiative International (RII) that serves hundreds of Holocaust survivors in Israel and in Belarus with comfort, care, activities, and more.

The elderly survivors know and trust the work of RII, and they gladly participate in their events. They feel loved and cherished. This admirable work is made possible by the joint effort of staff and volunteers, that is why RII is also committed to raising servant-hearted and outreach-focused disciples to continue and expand their efforts.

Together with their team, RII has established four congregations in Belarus and engages in various humanitarian projects in Israel and abroad.

Their great heart for the needy resulted in two additional initiatives being established, one called Project 58, to help the poor with practical and material help, and Generation Next, to inspire young people to dedicate their lives to service. The leaders of Reach Initiative International, Steward and Chantal Winograd, are committed to serving those in need.

Their hope is to impart the vision to act with compassion onto the next generation of believers.

Make a Holocaust Survivor’s Dream Come True

We all have dreams. Much of life is devoted to making such dreams a reality for ourselves and those we love! For many Holocaust Survivors, dreams were lost amidst the devastation of anti-Semitism and tragedy.

Recently some of the Survivors of Belarus approached us and asked for us to help them fulfill their life-long dream to visit Israel.

Their words said it best “Please take us to Israel before we die! We want to step foot on the Jewish Home Land.”

For most of these Survivors, living in the Former Soviet Union with little finances has made this desire impossible. Your partnership will help Holocaust Survivors experience the Holy Land for the first time. Would you consider contributing to this dream?

Learn More: Help Sponsor a Holocaust Survivor Today

Estera Wieja
Estera Wieja is a journalist, book author and public speaker, focused on the topics of Israel, Jewish history, and Judeo-Christian culture. Born and raised in Poland, Estera is a regular contributor to "Our Inspirations" magazine in Poland. She holds a Bachelor degree in Communications and Media from Azusa Pacific University (California, USA), and a Master degree in Journalism from University of Warsaw, Poland. Estera has lived in Jerusalem, Israel for several years before joining the staff at FIRM in 2018.