Please be advised that the following story includes details of violence which may be triggering; reader discretion is advised.
When the call came in about Yaakov*, an eleven year-old boy in the foster care system, our case manager knew that this was an acute situation that would have to be tackled on several fronts. He had arrived to the U. S. from Yemen alone, without any family and not speaking a word of English. His foster parents, caring and concerned yet in over their heads, reached out to Amudim, not knowing where else to turn. They were ready to support Yaakov in any way possible, but the suffering he had faced in his homeland was not something they could have imagined.
Yaakov saw his parents and other family members killed before his eyes, left hanging in the public square. He was severely traumatized and depressed, and did not have the tools or language to even communicate what he was feeling. Our case manager stepped in and began networking with numerous resources; she began by finding a therapist trained in this type of trauma who also spoke Yaakov’s language. Amudim reached out to government agencies to ensure maximum financial coverage for the intense help that Yaakov would require. We also suggested therapy for the foster family to learn how to deal with Yaakov’s pain, assist him through the long and difficult process of recovery, and ensure their own mental wellbeing and that of their other children.
It has been an arduous road, and our case manager has continued to follow up with Yaakov’s therapist and his foster family. Now that he is getting the proper help from someone who speaks his language and is also working with Yaakov on acclimating to America, there has been some improvement. There is still a long way to go in the healing process for a boy who went through horrors of which no one should ever know; but we are hopeful that Yaakov will find a place of peace where the terrible memories will slowly begin to fade.
*Details have been changed for privacy purposes