Vasika and her two sonsVasika Tarife is a 26 year old immigrant from Ethiopia. She has two young sons ages 5 and 8. She was injured in a bus bombing in Jerusalem, February 2004 and her face and hands were burned. She also had internal bleeding and a blood clot and shows symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. For many months, she had dizzy spells, headaches and general weakness and was not able to return to her former employment as a cleaning person. About a year after being injured her husband divorced her and for all intents and purposes she is a single mother with meager resources trying to raise two children in a very run-down apartment located in a poor section of Jerusalem. Unfortunately, given the strains put on a family following a terror attack, divorce is a common consequence.

Vasika has no formal education. Nonetheless, she realizes she has the intelligence and ability to better her life and has decided to pursue training as a skilled rather than an unskilled laborer. She hopes to become a seamstress and is currently enrolled in a government-sponsored course to learn those skills. Vasika is also enrolled in a Hebrew language Ulpam so that she can better communicate with her children--who are already fluent--and the greater society. The physical, economic and emotional strains in her life are enormous.

Bridges has helped Vasika with her monthly living expenses and by making her home more habitable. We paid for a necessary upgrade of her kitchen and helped her make additional small home improvements. In addition, we plan to further assist her in her job training.