WZO and Jewish Agency Chairman Visits Ukrainian Jewish Center for Children with Disabilities

While visiting Ukraine as part of the delegation accompanying the President of Israel’s formal visit to Ukraine, Mr.Yaakov Hagoel, the acting chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel and chairman of the World Zionist Organization, made a special visit to the “Child with a Future” Jewish Center for Children with Disabilities operated by the Chief Rabbi of Kyiv, Rabbi Jonathan Markowitz.

“I am thrilled and excited to see what Rabbi Markovich has managed to create,” Mr. Yaakov Hagoel said during his visit. “One of the tasks that I have set for myself is to help people with disabilities live independent and healthy lives, immigrate to Israel, and successfully integrate into society. I believe that we will be able to join hands in this extremely important task.”

The Chairman’s delegation consisted of Jewish Agency regional leaders as well as representatives of the World Zionist Organization.

The “Child with a Future” educational center for children with disabilities is an inclusive correctional institution for children with early childhood autism (RDA), autistic personality traits, delayed speech and psycho-speech development, and hyperactivity (ADHD).

“When my wife Inna and I opened this institution nearly 20 years ago,“ said Chief Rabbi Jonathan Markovitch, “development centers were unheard of in Ukraine. Together with my wife and the Jewish community of Kyiv we have managed to establish a project that serves not only the Jews of Ukraine but also those from neighboring countries.”

“Our greatest joy is when a child is ‘taken away’ from us and sent to a regular kindergarten or school. This means that we have successfully fulfilled our goal, and the child is ready to enter society,” Rebbetzin Inna added.

At the end of their meeting, Mr. Hagoel presented Rabbi Markowitz with a symbolic gift – a ‘Hamsa’ from Israel – one of the most recognizable Jewish symbols that symbolizes the helping hand that the Almighty always extends to the people of Israel.

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