Meeting the urgent needs of Holocaust Survivors
National Emergency Call Center
For more than ten years now, the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem has sensed an urgency to increase our outreach to the thousands of Holocaust survivors remaining in Israel. There are still 179,600 survivors in Israel, all now 75 years and older, and about one-quarter of them are living below the poverty line. So, we started a special ‘adopt-a-survivor’ program and also opened a unique assisted-living home in Haifa solely dedicated to caring for survivors in need.
The corona pandemic then brought a new challenge – how to help these struggling Holocaust survivors get through a prolonged health crisis which has confined them inside their homes for the past year. Due to their acute vulnerability to the virus, it has been one long, grinding lockdown for these elderly survivors. The physical and mental strain on them has been great, especially for those whose lengthy time in isolation has triggered very personal memories of Nazi atrocities experienced in their youth. We have managed to take good care of the 70 residents of our Haifa Home for Holocaust survivors, as well as to help hundreds of others across the country. But more has been needed and the opportunity has now arisen for the ICEJ to assist thousands of Holocaust survivors through a special call center established just one block from our Haifa Home.
Manned by volunteers from across Israeli society, the call center is actively reaching out to hundreds of Holocaust survivors every day to inquire about their condition and needs, and then working to immediately assist them. The center is delivering groceries and hot meals, arranging home repairs, driving survivors to the doctor for medical care and vaccine shots, and sending volunteers on home visits to lift their spirits. They also are simply calling survivors to check in and let them know someone cares. These efforts have been so vital, timely and compassionate, the call center has quickly caught the attention of major foreign media outlets in Israel.
Israel is now slowly working its way out of the corona lockdowns, but many of these Holocaust survivors had pressing needs before corona, and it will take them time and lots of care and attention to recover from the added trauma caused by the pandemic. The call center provides an effective means to assist them, and we are looking to our Christian friends and supporters worldwide to help us fund this response center for meeting their urgent needs.
Please extend your hand of compassion to deserving Holocaust survivors in Israel by supporting this emergency calling center in Haifa.
Thank you for caring, and for acting today!