Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine

by Friends of the Four Homes of Mercy
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine
Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine

     YOU have provided an essential emotional outlet, education, and medical and therapeutic guidance to our families whose previous experience with their disabled loved on have been only on visits to them at the Homes, or only on short stays at home.  

Challenges you have made far easier have included:

  • What to do when their impaired, no-verbal loved one was crying for long periods of time and one’s attempt at comfort was not working?
  • How/when to encourage the loved on to feed himself/herself?
  • How to transfer the loved one safely from bed to wheelchair without injuring either the loved one, or one’s increasingly elderly back?
  • How to provide stimulation when, because of logistical challenges-like stairs, one could not even take the loved one outside?
  • How to deal with the gnawing fear that one was not doing things ‘right’ or enough things to prevent regression of skills?
  • How to deal with the frustration of one’s own exhaustion and isolation?

     Throughout Covid, until their loved one could be returned to the Homes, family members, initially bonded by the family support groups at the Homes, vented to, consulted with, and shared experiences with one another through WhatsApp. Having support from others who truly understood their frustrations and challenges made an enormous difference to them and all in their families.  Frequent group meetings (via zoom) with staff provided additional support and therapeutic expertise.  Now, to the joy of all, most residents have returned and the Family Support Groups are again able to meet at the Homes. 

     Thank you for all you have done to lighted some very heavy burdens.

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Time together
Time together

The Four Homes of Mercy

Family support program

 

Ventilation session

Our experience during the last year

 

In addition to providing information, advice and emotional support to families to create a caring environment to their loved ones through phone and what'sApp we decide to make a ventilation session with families, and to know about their experience during the last year when they bringing residents back to the homes.

Halima mother said : sometimes I feel it’s a very fantastic period when my daughter have grown closed to me and engaging emotionally with her," at the beginning " But on the opposite side , it’s a very difficult period that I never complain and don’t face stress like this, for example during the first six months I never allowed any one to visit me even my sister to avoid bringing the virus to my home " I don’t care about myself" but   I am afraid and worry about my daughter to catch infection whom have low immunity. 

One of the most amazing thing happened with one day  I spent most of the day searching the key of the door and finally I found it in the door. Really I never know the importance of the four homes and the effort the employee do and the nature of care they provide to our loved ones as this year, despite my daughter admitted since 17 years  . Thanks to God for the availability of this place. 

Support!
Support!
Mother helping her blind daughter
Mother helping her blind daughter
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SUPPORT FAMILIES WITH SPECIAL NEEDS IN PALESTINE

Blessedly, the Covid epidemic in our area is subsiding enough to enable the return of a number of our residents who have been sheltering in place with their families.  Several new residents are coming within the next couple of weeks.

Our family support group—who have been supporting each other via their What’s App group— will be reaching out to the families of the newcomers—offering them to join the group.  Our social worker and matron, as always, maintain contact with the families of all residents, calling to check on them and responding immediately to their calls.  They provide emotional support and guidance as to how best to manage challenges—such as feeding difficulties, bed to wheelchair transfers, and understanding the communications of  their non-verbal loved one.  They also encourage them to connect by phone with family members of other residents who have walked, and/or are walking the same difficult path.

The continued unreliability of internet access in the West Bank increases the difficulty of steady on-going communication.  Our present goal is to find ways to improve the wifi connection at the Homes, then use Zoom  with those families who have wifi and computer capability to them again to meet ‘face to face.’

Our first zoom family support group meeting(s) will focus on helping to the family members process the challenges of this past year.  This will assist their own healing and their ability to accept and accurately see the present abilities of their loved one and set appropriate future incremental goals.  (The year’s lack of physical and occupational therapy has caused some deterioration of the functioning of many of our returning residents.) The group members will be essential in supplying hope to each other as their loved one regains his/her abilities and develops new ones.

Your financial assistance has provided the on-going contacts and guidance between our social worker and matron, and their families.  We look forward to the time, hopefully soon! when these meetings can be face to face (at least via zoom) and include family members of our newest residents.

On behalf of our residents, staff and their families, our deepest thanks to you for your kindness and generosity which has so enhanced the lives of our residents and their families.
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October Report for  Support Families with Special Needs in Palestine

 

Thanks to the family support group you have funded, the families of our residents have been able to talk with someone who truly understands the challenges of:

 

     Being elderly with a bad back, having to change, and frequently reposition your son who is bigger than you are.

 

     How to comfort your young daughter when neighborhood kids tease her about her sister who sits on the porch, rocking incessantly, occasionally yelling, but unable to speak.

 

     Finding new ways to prepare soft food, and position your sister so she can eat it without choking

 

     Creating games and activities that your son can do in a wheelchair in the sitting room because the stairs make it too difficult to take him outdoors regularly.

 

     Convincing your severely developmentally delayed daughters always to wear masks when they go out near people.

 

     Coping with your child’s depression as he misses his friends, activities and the staff at the Homes.

 

     In addition, struggling with your own fears of the virus attacking your family, the breadwinner’s loss of income, and your own exhaustion.

 

Without the friendship of each other which group members have established , and the frequent support of our social worker and matron on What’sApp calls, this awful time of Covid-19 would be even worse.

 

Each member of the group, their famiies, and our staff want you to know how much you have helped them.

 

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In these times of Covid, the family support group created with gifts from GlobalGiving Donors has been indespensable to our families by providing spport and breaking their senses of isolation and being overwhelmed.

As the tight closures were beginning in Mid-March, and people were ordered to shelter in place rater than go to their jobs, family members of 2/3 of our residents chose to use the opportunity to have them home and celebrate Ramadan with them for the first time for many years.  The expectation was that in May, life would 'return to normal' and the residents would return.

Sadly, the virus is still raging, cities locked down at times, and the Homes have maintained their strict quarantine despite enomous pressure from the families, a few of whose members have managed to return to employment

The lifeline for a number of these families has been the check-ins from our acting director and social worker (co-leaders of the group) and communication  between families--generallly by phone, in one-on one calls to share support and ideas on how to manage the challenges of caring for their disabled loved one. Had the group not been formed, it is highly unlikely that the families would have felt comfortable reaching out to one another!!

 Since it is sadly obvious that Covid-19 is not leaving soon, the Homes will be formalizing the parents' group meetings into smaller groups (because of frequent unreliability of the the internet there) via WhatsApp.

The support by the group that you provided has been essential, especially for those families who have not had their loved one at home for more than a few days for many years--if ever!

If you can, please continue to support us and keep these groups going.

On behalf of all at the Homes, our deepest thanks.  

Please stay safe!

Blessings!!

Liz

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Organization Information

Friends of the Four Homes of Mercy

Location: Cupertino, CA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @none
Project Leader:
Liz Mulford
Cupertino, CA United States
$24,121 raised of $42,500 goal
 
185 donations
$18,379 to go
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