While many people have moved on from the shock surrounding the Russian invasion of Ukraine, those on the front lines are still very much entrenched in a brutal day-to-day struggle. Ukrainian Jewish Refugees continue streaming into Poland in desperate need of help. Thankfully, Rabbi Shalom Ber Stambler with his wife Mrs. Dina Stambler at Chabad of Poland are ready and willing to greet them and tend to their every need.
“When the war started, and we realized what was going on, we needed to arrange food and housing for all Jewish refugees. There are refugees arriving here physically injured, ill, or newly bereaved after losing a loved one in action or as a victim to the indiscriminate shelling. Most have never even stepped foot in Warsaw, they don’t speak Polish. We try to make them feel safe, comfortable, and optimistic and we help them plan a brighter future,” shares Rabbi Shalom Stambler. “Not only are they providing living accommodations and necessities, but they are working closely with the Israeli consulate to help refugees emigrate and rebuild their lives in Israel. Every few days, the Israeli consulate comes to make arrangements and the refugees are seeing success in their goal of reaching Israel,” he added.
Prior to the Russian invasion, the Stamblers’ expenses and resource needs were manageable, similar to those of most Chabad Houses. Now, the cost of the services Chabad is providing to refugees has reached hundreds of thousands of dollars per month, and the Stambler’s spending has increased to the point where they have spent more in three months than in the entire year prior. The refugees’ most critical and expensive need right now is shelter, and it costs $250 to provide one week of temporary housing to a single refugee family, or $1000 for one month.
Though Chabad is in the middle of a campaign to raise $1M to cover the cost of helping the Jewish refugees still flooding into Poland, they are having an emergency fund appeal to cover the cost of the ten residential apartments to help families restart their lives.
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