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  • Writer's pictureRabbi Benyamin Bresinger


Updated: Feb 28

Identifying details have been altered to respect the confidentiality of the client.

This month, I wanted to share the kind of intimate moment that takes place at our centre on a daily basis.

Recently, there was a 12-year-old girl waiting in our reception area to see a Youth Counsellor. As I later learned, she is living in a group home in the aftermath of having been separated from her violent alcoholic father.

My office is right next to the reception area because I put a lot of care into making sure that our clients' first experiences at Lifeline are warm and welcoming. It shouldn’t be like walking into a clinic — it should feel like coming home.

I introduced myself and told her I had one question for her:

“Do you like more peanut butter or more jelly on your sandwich?”

I wish you could have seen her face. Not only as she smiled and said, “More jelly”, but as she shyly asked for seconds. She was clearly hungry.

There was so much beauty in this interaction, and it owes to the kind of warmth we strive to offer from the moment someone in need walks through our door. Tenderness and gentle connection are absolutely fundamental to creating a place of healing for kids struggling with addictive behaviours, family dysfunction, and mental health issues. It is a credit to the generosity of our community of friends and benefactors that such a place can even exist, let alone thrive. Thank you.

All the very best,

Rabbi Benyamin Bresinger


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