“Beating the Odds” was established to meet the needs of Orr Shalom’s children as they grow into young adults and beyond. Just as other children continue to be connected to and cared for by their families as they grow older, Orr Shalom’s children deserve that same continued family connection. Orr Shalom continues to support our graduates beyond the age of 18 which is a major paradigm shift for the agency – until now we have limited our responsibility up to the age of 18.
Thanks to the generous support of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia we are able to take the first steps – to beating the odds – and extending our work with our graduates well beyond their army service.
“Beating the Odds” has four primary objectives:
Every individual child has the ability to soar, and we refuse to allow their traumatic personal histories to prevent them from fulfilling their potential. Orr Shalom provides its children with a sense of self-worth and the tools necessary to reach their own personal potential so that they are no longer “welfare cases”, thus creating a better society and community in Israel.
- To provide workshops both before and after high school graduation, teaching the essential life skills necessary to live as independent, responsible adults.
- To provide workshops for foster and house parents on the issues that teens face, and to help prepare them for independent living.
- To maintain contact with Orr Shalom graduates, and have a mentoring program where our successful graduates can work directly with the teens who are leaving the homes. These graduates speak the language of our emerging adults better and more fluently than even the best trained counselors and therapists.
- To accompany our children through life’s most significant post-high school events – army, college, embarking on a career and building a family. Graduating high school and reaching the age of 18 does not mean that they are no longer “our children.”