A group of Israeli organizations has launched a nationwide campaign to gather warm supplies and coats for women and children in Syria.
Israeli Flying Aid, Hanoar Haoved VeHalomed Youth Movement and Dror Israel are calling for youth from around Israel to come together to help those impacted by the war in Syria survive the winter months.
During the last winter storm that hit Israel and Syria, 27 Syrian children died due to inadequate shelter and freezing conditions and currently an estimated 9 million Syrians, many of them women and children, live without even basic shelter. Most of these war refugees lack the supplies needed to survive a harsh, cold winter.
To respond to what organizers call “awful situation on the other side of the border,” Project Human Warmth (Chom Enoshi) is holding a coat drive to help those suffering in Syria. Supplies, including coats, sleeping bags and cold weather gear is being gathered through Jan. 10 in locations throughout Israel.
“We must not stand aside when we can help those who need it,” the group said on its website. “A human disaster of enormous proportions is taking place four hours by car from Tel Aviv, and a mere hour from the Sea of Galilee, committing us as Israelis and human beings to act so lives are saved.”
The group further stressed that the tragedy is something Israelis cannot ignore: “Our history as a nation and the fact that we are a democratic society obligates us from a moral perspective to act in order to help all victims, no matter who they are – to be the voice of the voiceless.”
Schools from throughout Israel have responded to the campaign, gathering thousands of pounds of supplies to be transported to those in need. At the Amal-Shimshon school, the supply drive has yielded over 200 pounds of winter gear, and, according to teacher Eti Cohen, was enthusiastically supported by the kids and their families.
“All the children contributed — it didn’t matter if they were Jewish or Arab — with a full heart,” Cohen said.