Rabbi Yom Tov Cohen of Bnei Brak had his first leg removed due to diabetes complications eight years ago. One open heart surgery and another infection later, he is now a double amputee. His wheelchair is his only means of movement.
However, due to the size of his home, the wheelchair can’t take him far. With hallways too narrow for him to access the bedrooms or restroom, he is forced to sleep on a bed in the living room. Lacking all sense of privacy, he is a prisoner in his own home.
A home with passageways wide enough for his wheelchair is beyond the couples’ financial capabilities. His wife, Mrs. Tova Cohen, is deaf and blind in one eye. This does not stop her from taking her husband to the hospital for dialysis three times a week, or looking after their 5 children. It does, however, keep her from working. Rabbi Cohen once took pride in supporting his wife and children, but is now powerless to do anything beyond the confines of his small tableside mattress.
“It is torture. Severe torture,” says Mrs. Cohen.
They recently issued a public appeal in hopes of achieving their dream: A home where they and their children can live with privacy, and dignity.