During the month of May this past year, from the 10th to the 18th, Hamas launched 3,440 rockets at Israeli cities in the Gaza periphery and beyond. Cities including Sderot, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Rehovot, Rishon Lezion, Ramla, Lod, Nes Tziona, Mevaseret, Givat Shmuel, Petach Tikvah, Bnei Brak, and others were all under fire. The rocket barrage claimed the lives of ten Israelis and injured dozens more.
United Hatzalah volunteer EMTs responded to emergency after emergency caused by the rocket attacks, as well as regular medical emergencies that didn’t stop just because of the conflict. The organization’s fully trained emergency medical service volunteers, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim alike, put themselves in harm’s way, time and again to respond to medical emergencies occurring during the tumultuous time period.
While many of the volunteers in and near the Gaza periphery had full safety equipment, including a bulletproof helmet and vest, now that Hamas rockets were reaching a much wider area, more sets of protective equipment were needed in order to supply the volunteers in the wider affected area that was now within range of Hamas rockets. An additional 1,500 bulletproof helmets and vests were required by the organization in order to outfit these first responders to safely conduct their essential lifesaving work while giving them a basic level of protection.
United Hatzalah President and Founder Eli Beer turned to The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and asked them to help support the effort and assist the organization in purchasing the much-needed equipment to protect the volunteers. The Helmsley Charitable Trust graciously agreed to sponsor 708 sets of vests and helmets, providing the safety gear to volunteers throughout the area.
“The Helmsley Charitable Trust helped us during the national emergency facing the country in May and enabled us to purchase this equipment. Following the rocket attacks from Hamas earlier in the year, and the rising wave of terror attacks in Jerusalem, this protective gear is more vital than ever,” Beer said.
“Just this past week, Israel saw an increasing number of terror attacks, especially around the old city of Jerusalem. Whenever our volunteers respond to such incidents, where their own lives may be put at risk, it is reassuring to know that they have this equipment that helps to protect them so that they can help those in need and return to their families and loved ones safe and sound after it is over. I cannot thank the Helmsley Charitable Trust enough for their continued support of our efforts in order to save lives in Israel. Thank you,” he concluded.
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