"The success of Orr Shalom's Family Group Homes can be hard to believe. Take a look around the dinner table one evening though, and you will be convinced."
Caring for Israel's Most Vulnerable Children
Orr Shalom runs 20 Family Group Homes across Israel. Each home provides a family environment for up to 11 children who have been removed from their homes by the Ministry of Social Welfare after suffering extreme abuse, neglect, or tragedy. The homes are located in Holon, Herzliya, Jerusalem, Mevasseret Tzion, Ashkelon, Be'er Sheva, and Eilat.Most of our homes are run by two house parents. These are married couples who live in the home with their own biological children, while taking on the role of parent and mentor for the Orr Shalom children in their care.
Due to the demanding nature of the work, the house-parents are supported by a highly trained team of professionals, including a psychologist, a social worker, an academic tutor, National Service Volunteers and a counselor. This team ensures every aspect of the children's development is nurtured. Everyone working at the home is devoted to enabling the children to recover from their past traumas, and realize their full potential.
A New Model of Care
We are currently piloting a new model of care in some of our girls' homes. Instead of having a married couple as house parents, these homes now have a live-out house mother and four live-in counselors, ensuring that the girls have 24-hour care. This model better addresses the reality that more children are now being removed from their homes at later ages, as the Ministry of Social Welfare is placing greater emphasis on rehabilitating families. In the past, the girls in our care have often found it difficult to build up positive relationships with the house fathers and their male children. Under the new model, at least one of the counselors is male, with the goal of exposing the girls to positive male figures.