“The Speaking book”

“The Speaking book” is one of the most important Hesed’s programs, which are directed to the improvement of emotional conditions of sick people.

The clients of this program are the Hesed’s wards that cannot read independently on account of sight weakness or serious eye diseases.

Such wards, especially they are lonely or live alone, need a dialogue with the environment as well as an elementary moral support. A low and negative self-estimation, understanding of ones inferiority, narrows considerably the borders of social contacts and results in full isolability from the outer world and offishness quite often.

The task of the program “Speaking book” is to overcome the blind or nearly blind people’s alienation, to help them feel confidence that they are able to show their worth in the world of books, so as they would be able to rehabilitate themselves in the creative work. For this purpose we can offer a number of radio sets, cassette players, a library of sound records. For those whose sight is poor we have powerful magnifiers. For blind people we arrange reading seances and many other things.

The wards can listen to the literary works recorded on audiocassettes.

For today the record library has about one hundred literary works of well-known writers and poets of various genres at its disposal, including Boris Poljakov, Abraham Stahl, Osip Mandelstamm, Anatolij Pristavkin, Vasilij Grossman, Sergej Dovlatov, Feliks Kandelj, Vladimir Kunin, Dina Rubina, Efraim Sevella, Bulat Okudzhava, Elena Akseljrod.

Taking into account the wards’ wishes, the program has also included the Jewish music, songs and comic works of the colloquial genre into the record library.

The staff of the Hesed visits the wards at home, supporting friendly relations between each other. It gives a possibility to support and to comfort a person, to distract him/her from sad ideas, to emphasize to everything positive, that was in his or her life, to remind, that now s/he is not lonely. We do our best to convince our wards that both the Hesed staff and volunteers are attentive to his/her problems and concerned with their quick solution.

It is pleasant to realize that after one year’s work we have found the most undercovered “footpaths” for the joint overcoming of difficulties on this hard vital way.