December 10th 2014
The Neve Michael Children’s Home serves 250 children, aged 4 to 18 years, who are unable to live with their families due to neglect and/or abuse. Located in Pardes Chana, the home provides familiar warmth, education, extracurricular activities and therapy for these children.
The institution, run by Emunah, was founded in the 1940s and aims to break the cycle of distress for children. A tour of the campus will demonstrate how the lives of children from dysfunctional families are being turned around at Neve Michael.
Learn about the ongoing therapy given to mend the shattered childhoods of boys and girls who come from backgrounds rife with family dysfunction, drug and alcohol addiction, violence and other terrible circumstances. Children with severe emotional problems are helped with hands-on therapy methods, such as pet therapy.
Visit the Neve Michael elementary school to learn about the educational opportunities being given to the children at the home. Many of the children are in need of tutoring to close the academic gap caused by spotty attendance at school before they came to live at the center. Children are taught in small groups and offered homework help. Children of all academic levels thrive at the home. Most elementary school children attend the Neve Michael school. Some are bused to a more academically competitive institution, while others commute to various special education facilities.
Tour the family units, in which 10 to 12 children sleep in an apartment with a married couple. They receive love, warmth and care from stable role models, so they can learn what it’s like to have a functional family. Emphasis is also put on repairing the relationships of the children with their parents and siblings, where possible.
Some of the children at Neve Michael are not even able to go home to their families for Shabbat and holidays. These children spend their weekends at a special Weekend House, which is in a separate building, so that they also have the opportunity to enjoy the experience of packing up and going away for a few days.
Neve Michael also houses a Teen Girls Crisis Center, where girls between the ages of 13 and 18 come after the court has removed them from their homes. They receive emergency shelter, professional evaluation, individual treatment and follow-up, even after they leave the crisis center.