13 Oct Fund for Victims of Terror Providing Support Amid War
Fund for Victims of Terror Providing Support Amid War
With so many Israelis killed and injured, and countless homes and buildings damaged, The Jewish Agency’s Fund for Victims of Terror is operating on a wider scale than ever before.
Since Israel was attacked by Hamas on October 7, The Jewish Agency’s Fund for Victims of Terror (FVOT) has been working overtime. The Fund, often the first responder for families and individuals impacted by terror, distributes immediate grants within 24-48 hours of a direct attack, offering support for short-term needs and helping with long-term rehabilitation and post-trauma care. During the ongoing war in Israel, we have been collaborating with Social Services, Hospitals, and Municipalities, and disbursing critical financial assistance to so many.
On October 9, The Jewish Agency took Jewish Federations of North America President and CEO Eric Fingerhut and UJA-Federation of New York CEO Eric Goldstein to Barzilai Medical Center, in the heavily hit city of Ashkelon just eight miles north of the border with Gaza. There, the two CEOs showed their support on behalf of the FVOT to the hundreds of severely wounded Israelis who are being treated at the hospital. The North American Jewish leaders visited with the injured along with FVOT Chair Ayelet Nahmias Verbin, extending both emotional and financial support to the victims and their families.
On October 10, representatives of the Fund visited the Shamir Medical Center in Tel Aviv to support Ronen (Ronnie) Gabay and his family. Ronen serves as the Sderot Community Coordinator of Ongoing Security with the Israel Defense Forces. He was among the first on the scene on Shabbat morning, and he and the unit he commands, together with his brother-in-law, Yair Avinoam, fought off the terrorists at close range. Under intense gunfire, they both carried out heroic rescues. Ronnie saved a policeman under attack and Yair rescued two small girls whose parents had been shot point blank in their car with the girls inside. Ronnie has complex gunshot wounds to his shoulder and shrapnel wounds to his legs. His sisters, Sarit and Dganit, are not leaving his side. They are not able at this time to go back to Sderot.
Ronnie and Yair were visited by three lay leaders from Phoenix, Arizona; Jonathan Hoffer (husband of Chair of the JAFINA Board, Rachel Hoffer), Jason Morris and Steve Hilton. The three were supposed to lead a group of 20 young adults on an Israel trip but the group had to cancel. Jonathan, Jason and Steve decided they would not only come, but do all they could to help. They brought gifts, encouraged the wounded and their families, and thanked Yair and Ronnie for their incredible heroism.
Also on October 10, Jewish Agency Chairman Doron Almog spent time with injured Israelis in the hospital who have received aid from the Fund. Avi Shahar, the father of our San Diego ShinShin (service year Israeli emissary) Yarden, was wounded along with his son, Zohar, 14, by terrorist gunfire on Shabbat. Doron visited them at the Wolfson Medical Center in Holon near Tel Aviv, where he was amazed by their strength as they recovered from surgery. While there, Doron also met with Hila, the Director of the Sderot Resilience Center, and Idit, Avi’s wife and Zohar and Yarden’s mom, who also works for the Sderot Resilience Center. Everyone wanted to thank all the people of The Jewish Agency and the Fund for Victims of Terror for their support.
Later that day, Doron visited an injured policeman in the hospital, who was part of the first force that entered a home in Ofakim where hostages were being held.
The Fund for Victims of Terror is made possible by the generosity of the Jewish Federations of North America / United Israel Appeal, Keren Hayesod, foundations and donors worldwide and people like you. Our aid is critical for victims’ immediate well-being and long-term recovery and we are currently operating and supporting more victims on a wider scale than ever before. To support the Fund, donate here.