Our Stories

A Place Where Kids can be Kids In Tumultuous Times

Uliyana Batalia, 12, lives alone with her mother in the war-torn eastern Ukrainian city of Lugansk. Each day is a new struggle for them to survive the constant fighting and meet their basic needs.

One bright spot is the Teen Club at Lugansk’s Jewish community center sponsored by Federat…

Reinvigorating European Jewry Through Camp

Like many young Jews from Europe, David Csillik had his first Jewish experience at Szarvas.  Run in part by Federation partner JDC, Camp Szarvas brings together 1,500 teens from more than 20 countries for summer fun while helping them explore their Jewish roots.

After six years as a Szar…

A Tale of Love and Darkness in Ukraine

When separatist forces entered Nikita’s small hometown in eastern Ukraine, he was forced to leave behind everything he knew, from JDC community programs to his beloved fiancée. Five hundred miles away in Kiev, he found a home at the city’s Moishe House, a Federation-supported communit…

Ukrainian Winters Are Tough; Tania Is Tougher

Winter in Eastern Europe. The temperature is -27 ˚ F, and snow and ice have closed the roads. But Tania is riding a borrowed horse and sleigh packed with food and supplies from Federation partner JDC for Tatiana and Bronislav. She’ll make this hour-long trek every day because Tatiana and …

Choosing Fun Over Fear in Hungary

Peter Berenyi thinks it’s impossible for Jews in Budapest not to be worried by rising anti-Semitism in Hungary.

But rather than cower in fear, he helps organize Judafest. Supported by Federation partner JDC, Judafest is a public celebration of Jewish culture and tradition that draws tho…