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Remembering CARE Packages, and paying it forward

Helga Arndt was born in 1939 in Germany – the year World War II began. Her childhood was spent in a war zone: nights shattered by the piercing shriek of air raid sirens, thick smoke from falling bombs choking the air. She remembers the confusion and fear she felt running from home with her mother in search of the nearest bomb shelter.

When the war ended, Germany was a devastated shell of a country. Food and household goods were in short supply. Women made clothing from anything they could find – often drapes or parachutes. It was not an easy time to be raising a family.

Helga’s mom took her to a local church, in search of comfort and community. It was there they received their first CARE package.

After more than half a century, Helga still remembers the joy of opening that package to reveal the special items within. There were necessities like milk powder and canned meat, as well as coffee and clean clothing. She felt special, excited and cared for.

Helga has never forgotten the help her family received from CARE. She and her husband have made donations to help others in similar circumstances over the decades – and they’ve made the special decision to leave a gift for CARE in their will.

"We are not rich, but we have enough money to retire on…and I believe we have to be good stewards of what God has entrusted to us. We both feel CARE has proven to us firsthand that it is a worthy organization to give to, so others can receive.”

Helga Arndt