At only eight years old, Noah has already been through so much heartache…
Children are often the innocent victims of adults’ behaviour and sadly, eight-year-old Noah* is no different…
Noah is just one of many children being housed and supported by Jewish Care. This is his story.
Noah grew up with two loving parents. However, Noah’s mum had lived with mental illness which impacted greatly on him. She was given prescription medication to help alleviate her anxiety and depression. Sadly, this led to a drug-dependence and ultimately an addiction to illegal drug use.
Tragically, at the age of seven, Noah lost his mum to an overdose.
His dad was overwhelmed with grief. In the throes of his depression, Noah’s dad took his own life, eight months after his wife’s death.
Now an orphan, Noah was left in the sole care of his aunty Natalie*, whom he was very close to. Losing both parents within a year resulted in Noah being highly traumatised, suffering nightmares, unable to focus at school and having fears of being left alone.
Working casually as a teacher’s aide, Natalie struggled financially. She lived in a shared house in Frankston where she now had to share a single room with Noah. An additional worry was being told that she was being evicted as the landlord was selling the house. The house was also an hour away from Noah’s Jewish school, making daily transport extremely challenging. The one thing that Noah’s late mum had been insistent on was a Jewish education for Noah.
Natalie was desperate for Noah to remain in her care and did not want him to be placed in foster care. She also wanted to honour her late sister’s wish by keeping Noah in his Jewish school. Not having anyone else to turn to for help, Natalie contacted Jewish Care.
The first priority was to find them both suitable accommodation closer to his school. As Noah was a young child, he and Natalie were given top priority for Jewish Care’s housing and were soon able to move into a Jewish Care unit.
With an extra mouth to feed, Natalie was given immediate financial assistance to help pay for food and other general living expenses. Jewish Care’s social worker linked Natalie with Legal Aid to support her in obtaining full guardianship of Noah.
Through Jewish Care’s Employment Centre, Natalie was assisted to find secure, permanent employment to help her pay the bills.
Natalie attended Jewish Care’s positive parenting education program, Healthy Families, giving her ideas and knowledge about effective parenting. In addition to this, a social worker from Jewish Care’s Service Coordination Program, helped Natalie to understand more about the traumas which Noah had experienced at such a young age.
What started as a major crisis for Natalie and Noah had now been turned around.
Natalie says, “The best decision I ever made was to contact Jewish Care. With their support, I was able to provide Noah with a secure and loving home. It is so heartwarming for me to see Noah happy with his friends at the same school”.
Noah and Natalie are just one of the many families in our community who need support. Whether assistance is needed for housing, employment, financial aid, financial counselling, disability or any other vital service, Jewish Care is here for our community, and most importantly, our children, every day.
Like Noah and Natalie, there are many people who still need your help. As the caring and generous community that we are, we need to stand together to help each other, which is why I am asking you to please give generously to Jewish Care’s 2019 Annual Appeal.
For the past 170 years, Jewish Care has been providing support to those in need in our community. This year, due to increasing demand on our community services, we need to raise $3.5 million to help children like Noah and other individuals and families in need in our community.
We ask that you take a moment to do the greatest thing today and change somebody's tomorrow.
Please click the button below to donate online now!
Every child deserves a happy childhood. Whatever your gift, you can be certain that it will make a difference!