Posted by Irina Rutman
I joined Hakalah of Schechter Holocaust Services in June 2010. It was a challenge for me even though I have been working with elderly clients since 2005. In Hakalah I need to assess my clients’ needs across a very broad range—financial, medical, home care needs, social, and more. My goal is to provide help and comfort so Holocaust survivors can age with dignity in their homes.
Aging encompasses many losses for all of us. For Holocaust survivors these losses are even more complicated. When they were younger they endured the unthinkable and after all these tragedies they left their countries to start over. The combination of the Holocaust and immigration shock is very hard to live with. Regardless of when they came, most of them have very limited English, which impedes their ability to resolve so many of the problems that confront them. Holocaust survivors may not talk about their difficulties in detail and that is why listening, observing, caring, and understanding are most needed. My assessment can make a big difference in their lives.