Having sent their children to the safety of Israel, Chani and Chezki Lifshitz, the Chabad emissaries based in Kathmandu, have stayed behind to continue spearheading recovery efforts in light of the massive earthquake to hit the Nepal on April 25.
Rabbi Chezki Lifshitz travelled by helicopter on Wednesday, helping to rescue 25 stranded Israelis, who were stuck without food, water, or electricity in remote villages of Nepal. The Chabad House of Thamel Kathmandu is also bringing food to Nepalese refugee camps.
The Chabad House has also been working to track down stranded Israelis and keeping the Chabad House Thamel Kathmandu Facebook page updated with reports for worried families, while making sure hot meals are available for those Israeli trekkers returning.
Meanwhile, the Lifshitz couple’s three children were sent to Israel on a special flight with rescued Israelis on Tuesday, along with their Nepalese carer Lolita, who lives with the family at the Chabad house in Katmandu. The children, Shmuel, Rivki, and Yitzchak, aged four to six, were hosted by Israeli President Reuven Rivlin at the President’s Residence together with their grandmother Yehudit Fleischman and Lolita.
During their visit, the President gave them chocolate and heard their experiences over the recent days. Rivlin also telephoned Rabbi Chezki and his wife in Nepal and had their children speak with them.
The Lifshitzs were very moved by the phone call, and thanked the President for the warm welcome he gave their three small children. “We are all one nation! Although dad and mom stayed behind in Nepal to help, the President of the State of Israel took care of our children personally,” wrote the Lifshitzs in a Facebook post following the conversation.
“The work you are doing for the whole world, and of course for the Israelis in Nepal, is extraordinary, from a Jewish, Israeli, and universal perspective,” President Rivlin told the Chabad couple during the phone call.
“Just as you open your home to the whole world, we are delighted to open our home to your children. We will look after them, and through them extend to you our thanks,” he said.