As a Fishel fellow, I was placed in India with JDC Entwine Multi-Week Global Jewish Service Corps with Gabriel Project Mumbai, and I am now working in Berlin as a JDC Entwine Global Jewish Service Corps fellow.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Another Face of India

Yesterday we had the privilege of checking out the rehabilitation center that Melissa’s friend, Dave, worked at for a year through AJWS.  We first visited one of their outreach centers near a local train station, where apparently heroin is a big problem.  We were greeted by current and former patients, who were so excited to have visitors, and we got a tour of the tiny building, which apparently floods frequently.  On our walk back to the train station, we were stopped by a man selling vegetables, who turned out to be one of Dave’s former patients, Kayun.  He insisted that we go to his house and celebrate his son’s 3rd birthday with him.  A short walk through narrow alleyways took us to Kayun’s little one-room hut, where he, his wife, son, and newborn daughter all live.  We all sat around on the floor, and they handed their infant daughter to me! Kayun bought us each a mango drink and insisted we drink them to celebrate his son’s birthday.  I was amazed at these people’s generosity when they have so little.  Kayun and his wife were heroin addicts but have been clean for 5 years.  Kayun is HIV positive, but by some miracle, his wife and children do not have the virus.  It was so incredible to sit in this little hut, holding the newborn baby of two former heroin addicts who have overcome such adversity to make a life for themselves.  

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