Until the Walbridge Fire destroyed it, Debórah & Noor had been creating a home, retreat center, and organic farm on 33 wooded acres outside of Healdsburg in Sonoma County. They called their property Venado, and envisioned a place where artists and friends and people from different backgrounds could come together in a beautiful, natural setting.

“We lost everything,” they told us, when they called after the fire … the cabin they were living in, the main house where they hosted guests, the fruit and olive trees, the redwoods. Debórah Eliezer Adabachi is a theatre director, and her husband Noor is a master craftsman and custom furniture maker. Even Noor’s woodworking tools were melted beyond recognition.

Debórah and Noor were in a state of shock when they called us after the fire. They had no idea what their insurance would cover, but they knew it wouldn’t be enough. They didn’t know yet if they had the heart to rebuild, but they knew they still needed to take care of the property.

We provided Debórah and Noor with an interest-free Disaster Relief loan to help with their living expenses and replace Noor’s tools. The loan paid for infrastructure repairs like fixing the road and the well, and it’s helping to restore the organic farm that’s an essential part of Venado. Just as important, the loan gave them some room to breathe … space to recover from the shock of their loss and think about next steps.

“It’s about the community, the collective journey we’re on. Getting a loan from Hebrew Free Loan made us feel that all of us — borrowers, lenders, donors — are in the same big boat together.”

Watch the short video below to hear Debórah and Noor talk about navigating the loss of their home, retreat center, and farm. In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic and the aftermath of disastrous wildfires, they’re mourning what’s been lost and finding a new way forward … grateful for the support of friends, family, and community.