Bracha

For Bracha, Yad LaKashish is the “light in her life.”

Bracha immigrated to Israel from Ethiopia 25 years ago with her husband and their nine children. They sold everything they owned and left Ethiopia to have the opportunity to live freely as Jews in the Jewish homeland. Their journey began with a three-week trek to Sudan under extremely harsh conditions. They had to remain silent, so as to not alert the authorities. During the journey, they were robbed and the money they had sewn into their clothes was taken. They were left with absolutely nothing, not even food or water. Due to starvation and disease, four of Bracha’s children did not survive the walk.

Bracha says, “Despite the immense suffering, we never regretted our decision.” Once they arrived in Sudan, a plane took them to Greece and from there they were finally brought to Israel. In Israel, Bracha says she immediately felt at home, in the place she was meant to be. Sadly, her husband passed away but the family is comforted by the knowledge that he had reached Israel and witnessed his family grow. She is now the proud grandmother of eight grandchildren.

Bracha started working in the ceramics workshop at Yad LaKashish in 2016. She is extremely happy to come every day not only because she relies on the financial support, but because she finds having personal relationships to be of vital importance in her life. Bracha works to get to know the people around her and always asks where people are when they don’t show up for work. Bracha's work station is next to another Ethiopian artist named Marsha, who speaks no Hebrew. The instructors rely on Bracha to use her limited Hebrew to help translate for him. Another of her coworkers, Adele, has begun to pick up some Amharic from Bracha and enjoys using her Amharic to communicate.

Since coming to Yad LaKashish, she says that her mood swings have gotten better and her work here gives her purpose and adds meaning to her life.
 

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