Valentina emigrated from Belarus in the late 1990s with her parents, who were both Holocaust survivors. Her mother died several years ago and just this February her father died. Valentina, who lived with her father in Brooklyn, grapples with serious mental health issues. Her father’s death left her feeling desperate, uncertain how she would pay the rent and other expenses.

Valentina turned to Selfhelp Community Services for assistance. Selfhelp staff immediately went into action, including helping Valentina update the lease and apply for a disability housing voucher and ensuring she received other benefits.

Valentina stopped by Selfhelp’s office almost daily to talk with her case manager. These visits offered Valentina great emotional support as she mourned her father and began her transition to living a life without him.

Then, a month after her father’s death, the coronavirus outbreak swept through New York and led Selfhelp to close their office. Valentina’s daily visits stopped.

Her case manager now calls Valentina almost every day to keep their connection and check on Valentina’s needs. With Passover around the corner, Selfhelp is also arranging for Valentina to receive a free, pre-made seder meal from UJA. UJA is providing 8,500 home-delivered seder meals to individuals and families in need throughout our area.

As Valentina navigates this difficult time, Selfhelp is doing what they can to ensure Valentina does not struggle alone.