May 21, 2007 / 4 Sivan 5767
"We can see a great deal of solidarity among the world Jewish communities with the situation here in the South," said Jewish Agency Chairman Zeev Bielski, as he bravely risked falling Kassam rockets to tour Sderot on Friday, May 18th. "I came here today to bring this support to the citizens here."
Meeting with Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal, Bielski said that the Jewish Agency received $2 million in emergency funding from the United Jewish Communities, UIA Canada and Keren Hayesod to bring all 8,200 children living in Sderot and the Gaza perimeter communities to a week-long camp in the safety of the center of the country.
“Just as we did in the North during the war in Lebanon last summer, the Jewish Agency and our partners are here to help the residents of Sderot and the surrounding area who are under attack and living under impossible conditions,” said Bielski as he oversaw Jewish Agency assistance to the area.
On Sunday morning, the senior staff of the Jewish Agency held an emergency conference call to put into motion plans for medium-term programs, including assistance to small businesses and summer camps for children and youth.
To date, over 100 Kassam rockets have landed in Sderot and the surrounding communities. Citizens are beseeching the government in Israel's newspaper headlines, "Stop the Terror. We've Had Enough."
The Kassam rockets have wreaked untold physical and emotional damage. Schools are closed. People are afraid to stay in their homes. Over 90% of the businesses have shut down. A raging fire brought on by a Kassam rocket destroyed acres of Kibbutz land and yesterday an Indian restaurant in Kibbutz Nir-Am burnt to the ground after it sustained a direct rocket hit. Minister of Defense Amir Peretz declared a "special situation" in Sderot and the Gaza perimeter communities.