Adina, age 14, was struggling with multiple issues including obesity, hard-to-manage diabetes and more recently, her fathers’ admission to hospital for ill mental health. She loved socializing and was a bright student but found school a huge struggle as she was embarrassed of her father’s illness and was very anxious about managing her sugar levels especially when socializing with her peers. Adina felt lonely, misunderstood and was spending too much time in her bedroom.
Her mother made a referral and following established procedures, Adina* was matched with Chava, a sensitive and fun-loving mentor who was ready to be there for Adina and give her a listening ear and a safe space. They met weekly enjoying therapeutic activities like art, baking and hairstyling whilst building a strong, secure relationship in which Adina* felt accepted for who she is despite the challenges she was facing.
After 6 months of 1:1 mentoring sessions, Adina rated herself 2+ points in “happiness” “enjoying school” “confidence”, “relationships” and “behaving responsibly” .
In her most recent feedback form, she wrote, “I wait for Sunbeams all week and only because of Chava I am so relaxed and happy – even in school”.

Thank you Jewish Child’s Day for enableing Sunbeams to accept a new cohort of 30 urgent referrals.
These girls (age 8-16) were facing adverse life events such as bereavement, family breakdown, parental ill mental health or domestic violence, which were exacerbated by the pandemic.