December 29, 2008 / 2 Tevet 5769
Since the start of Israel’s operation in Gaza Saturday, the Jewish Agency has begun to aid residents of the area under attack by providing immediate financial grants through its Victims of Terror Fund, which is underwritten by the United Jewish Communities (US Federations) and Keren Hayesod.
As of Monday (Dec. 29), the Jewish Agency received 45 requests for assistance and is already issuing checks to 14 families. Those eligible for the assistance are people who have been physically injured or whose home was badly damaged in a rocket attack. The grant, usually $1,000 per family, is used for immediate needs such as paying for temporary housing, clothes and other incidentals.
The Jewish Agency also set up a hotline 1-800-200-183 for residents of the area who need assistance. The hotline will serve residents interested in being hosted by families living in the center of the country, away from the area under fire as well as those needing to apply for Victims of Terror funding.
The hotline will also serve the 1,200 immigrants living at five Jewish Agency absorption centers in the area under fire. The Jewish Agency is working to put the new immigrants in touch with relatives living abroad, and has augmented staff and assigned additional social workers to the absorption centers.
Homes hit Saturday and Sunday by Palestinian rocket fire. The families living in these homes are all receiving assistance from the Victims of Terror Fund.
This is the bedroom of the Moses and Sarah Alemo family in Netivot. The Alemos, immigrants from Ethiopia, were having Shabbat lunch in their living room when at 2 pm an Iranian-made Katyusha rocket struck. The rocket fell just outside the house, the gaping hole in the bedroom was caused by shrapnel; from the force of the same rocke. Bebert Vakin, a neighbor, was killed.
The bedroom of Shlomo and Aviv Sela of Moshav Dekel, a community near the southern edge of the Gaza Strip. At 9 pm Saturday night, the alert sounded, and the couple took shelter in their bathroom; the rocket hit the bedroom.
Jewish Agency field worker Ohad Drori at the home of Maya Ibar, right, of Sderot, delivering a check from the Victims of Terror Fund Monday (Dec. 28). A rocket hit the upper floor of the house.
Credit for all photos: Ofer Baram and Ohad Drori
*Only low resolution photos available.