Skip to comments.Israel Pitches In With Disaster Relief After Hurricane Sandy
Posted on 11/08/2012 12:41:17 PM PST by IsraelBeach
Israel Pitches In With Disaster Relief After Hurricane Sandy
Members of various NGOs put Israeli knowhow to work, getting food, fuel and other supplies to emergency workers and victims.
New York --- When ISRAEL21c spoke with Israel relief volunteer Joel Leyden in New York yesterday, he had just received a phone call from the Nassau County Office of Emergency Management on New Yorks Long Island.
They confirmed that there is a police escort waiting to bring in Israel Flying Aids delivery of fuel, which will go to county hospitals to be dispensed to doctors and nurses so they will be able to get to and from work, he tells us.
One of the consequences of the October 29 Hurricane Sandy has been unavailability of gasoline because of difficulties in getting the fuel to gas stations, as well as power outages that have left gas pumps useless.
But transportation is certainly not the only problem facing residents of hard-hit areas of New York and New Jersey, and that is why Leyden and other Israeli volunteers are pitching in.
Just because people are not seeing pictures of destroyed homes anymore, does not mean there isnt a critical situation going on in Long Island and Staten Island, Leyden tells ISRAEL21c.
Roger Parrott, Jacob Parrott and Joel Leyden (in blue hat) delivering a generator and gas to a Hurricane Sandy victim. Photo courtesy of Becky McCann / Israel News Agency
Were talking about devastation close to a nuclear bomb having gone off, with hundreds of homes completely leveled and thousands of people without electricity, without food, without water, without shelter. It hasnt changed since the storm hit.
Though there is reportedly an effort to bring an Israeli military medical delegation to the United States in the coming days, for now the official offers of help have been turned down.
However, that has not stopped members of various non-governmental organizations, such as Israel Flying Aid and Israeli Humanitarian Aid-Latet, from taking up the challenge even if it means digging into their own pockets. Most of them are Israelis living in or visiting the United States, says Leyden, who resides both in Raanana, Israel and New York and worked with Israel Flying Aid in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake.
Israel Humanitarian Aid and synagogue volunteers in Connecticut preparing an emergency food convoy.
Photo courtesy of Jennifer McCann / Israel News Agency
Every Israeli can be proud of what we are doing to represent them, he says.
IsraAid CEO Shahar Zahavi and Program Director Voni Glick are leading a delegation of 10 to 15 trained rescue volunteers heading to the disaster area in the coming days, spokeswoman Tova Hametz tells ISRAEL21c.
The group will start in Far Rockaway and Long Beach in Long Island, and the devastated Atlantic City-Margate area of the Jersey Shore.
Their mission is to rehabilitate, rescue, bolster morale and bring physical and communal resources in the most effective, organized and expedient way, says Hametz.
They will locate the greatest needs and allocate resources to the most decimated populations and vulnerable populations, such as older people and families with young children who are still without electricity or had severe damage to their homes.
This effort is being financed largely by young Israelis and Israeli companies in addition to partner companies in the United States that have agreed to provide food, water, gasoline, sheets, blankets, clothes and storage facilities for people needing to be evacuated from their homes. We will try to organize volunteers there as well, since IsraAid has expertise in coordinating efforts that are already in motion.
Convoy from Connecticut
Meanwhile, the first group of Israeli volunteers led by IFA North American Operations Manager Moti Kahana and Israel Humanitarian Aid Director Joel Leyden has delivered fuel to employees of hospitals in New Jersey, and brought generators, food and other essential equipment and supplies to the South Shore of Long Island.
Most of those involved know the New York area so they know where to get supplies and where theyre needed, Leyden says.
Yesterday I coordinated Panera Bread to mobilize 15 of their restaurants to take food, bread, pastries and put them in a truck to deliver to the Nassau County Office of Emergency Management and the Red Cross.
An entire convoy from Connecticut, including members of Temple Beth Hillel of South Windsor, Connecticut, brought food as well as generators to first responders, police and firefighters, and private homes in Nassau County.
Hundreds of people were standing in lines with red canisters waiting to get gas, and Id pull the convoy over to distribute Panera Bread and Dunkin Donuts to each person in line, Leyden relates.
We were sure to be wearing our blue-and-white Israeli hats to make sure they knew this aid was coming from the people of Israel.
Israelis are great in terms of being prepared and able to function in emergencies and disasters, says Leyden. Unfortunately, thats the environment weve had to adapt to and what makes us excel in places like Haiti, Japan, Turkey and even New York.
That’s nice but I thought we take care of our own.
In the disaster of super storm Hurricane Sandy, the Federal government (FEMA)and the Red Cross were not prepared.
Furthermore, the Democratic Governor of New York, as his citizens were begging in the streets for help from Staten Island and Long Island, refused to take disaster relief assistance from Israel. Israel is the 51st first. They will always have your back - both in the Middle East and here in the US when disaster strikes.
NYC has more Jews than Israel. Even Mayor Mike Bloomberg met with Benjamin Netanyahu (when President Obama would not).
This IS a case of people taking care of their own.
God bless Israel.
“Never assume that others will act to help in an emergency. It is up to you to stand up and be there. That makes you one of the others.”
FEMA packed up and left...so nope. We are NOT taking care of our own!
Thank you, Israel!!!
FEMA did not arrive on Staten Island for over a week after Hurricane Sandy destroyed thousands of homes. The Red Cross also waited to establish shelters for days. And New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ignored the pleas for help by New Yorkers who cried for food, water and shelter as he refused Israel’s offer to assist. Shameful!
Thank you, Israel!! - I pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
My son is on LI.
Isreal - Helping to keep Obama voters comfortable.
With all the money we give Israel, they practically are our own. Besides, what’s with 70% of American Jews voting for Obama?
Please find it in your heart to forgive my typo.
I am blind in one eye and have limited vision in the other.
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