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Jan 14, 2009

War Relief from Lemaan Achai - Be'er Sheva

War Relief Update from Lemaan Achai

13th Jan '09; Day 17 of the War
Bet Shemesh, Israel


* Grad Missile Lands 6ft from Dad *

I met Rachel today in Noga School, Ramat Bet Shemesh.

Rachel is 17 years old, from Beersheba. She and her class were studying in the school library, here in Bet Shemesh, because their school in Beersheba is closed down, due to insufficient bomb-shelters - and far too many direct hits on Beersheba by Hamas missiles.

Rachel is one of over a Thousand school children who have relocated from within missile range from Gaza, to Bet Shemesh (located a critical 5km beyond the 40km current missile range).

"My father was walking outside to his car, when a "Grad" missile landed 2 metres (6 ft) from him," Rachel explained. "These missiles carry several kilograms of explosives and can destroy whole buildings. And my father escaped without injury. It was absolutely miraculous."

A fellow pupil in the same class joins in our conversation. "We had a Grad hit just outside our building," she related. "You can't understand how terrifying it is to live in a quiet city you love, which is now being pounded daily with missiles and missile warning sirens are going every few hours, sending you sprinting to the nearest shelter....you've got, at best, a minute to find safety."

"For us to get away from all that, to come to Bet Shemesh, to study quietly and calmly, is like paradise for us," continues Rachel. "I never thought I would be so happy to be able to quietly study for bagrut exams"

Ilana, the girls' teacher, told me how much they appreciate the security here, and also the amazingly warm welcome they have received by the schools and population of Bet Shemesh.
"We are so pampered," she said, "with every resource, hot meals, outings, and lots & lots of care - the girls are having such a good time in Bet Shemesh - that perhaps they won't want to go home after the War!"

"We all thank the whole Bet Shemesh community, the schools, and in particular Noga school and Lema'an Achai - and *everyone* who has supported this amazing program. We are so very very grateful", said Rachel.

You can get a feel for what it's like to hear a missile warning siren by clicking on: http://sderotmedia.com/bin/videos.cgi?q=watch&id=2118



KIDS: As it is during the school year, and schools and yeshivas have now been closed down in the South by law, there is a big demand for school groups to relocate in Bet Shemesh.
Groups have arrived from Ashdod, Kireat Gat, Ashkelon, Sderot, Shomreiya, Netivot, and others...

Around a Thousand kids!

These groups have come by organized buses, complete with teaching staff, and are being housed in various Bet Shemesh Community Centers and Schools.
They arrive each morning, and go home after school hours.
More are due to come.

The overwhelming feeling is that everything here is 'under control' with these kids. They are good kids, well cared for by their regular teachers and staff. The Bet Shemesh schools and community centers have done an incredible job to provide the space and facilities all these extra kids need.

The kids' main needs today are therefore for catered hot food (they bring sandwiches from home, but need this supplemented for a long day), for activities/games during the breaks, and for recreational outings.
Lema'an Achai is supplying these needs.

FAMILIES: At this point, families are moving from the South to Bet Shemesh in a sporadic fashion.

These families are being matched up with host families by the Bet Shemesh Municipality, by Lema'an Achai and by Ezrat Achim.
As of today, the supply and demand is balanced (actually more willing hosts than families).
Some hosts would find it helpful to have extra food - so we are looking to establish cooked food collection points for host families (we did this last time very effectively).
We are also looking at setting up family-to-family hostings for shabbat/weekend - a major community wide project - if there is enough demand for this.

STUFF FOR THE SOUTH: Bet Shemesh Community Centers, Ezrat Achaim & Lema'an Achai are continuing to collect useful items to deliver to the South. Toys, Books, Heaters, Blankets, are all welcome.

FUTURE: Nobody knows how long this War will last, nor the nature of the imminent needs of our brothers & sisters just a few minutes drive south of us.
Or even if we, ourselves, may require help; as just an extra half-litre of rocket fuel would put Bet Shemesh in range.

Lema'an Achai is spearheading the Bet Shemesh War Relief Program, in alliance with the Municipality, the Community Centers, Schools, many Charities and an 'army' of amazing volunteers.

We are prepared and preparing for all contingencies.

Please donate today www.IsraelWar.org , and encourage your relatives, friends and communities to do the same - because we are able to keep Rachel, her classmates, and another Thousand school children, safely out of missile range, ONLY because of our generous donors.

And most importantly, we ask that you also spare a moment, to pray for the successful mission, and the safe return, of all our brave soldiers.

Besorot tovot - we should hear only good news
David & Avrohom

More Ways to Donate:

USA Tax Deductible: "US Friends of Lema'an Achai", PO Box 532, Oceanside, NY 11572-0532, USA.
UK Tax Deductible: "British Friends of Lema'an Achai", c/o Nava Kestenbaum, 96 Rigby Street, Salford, Manchester, M7 4BQ, ENGLAND.
Canadian Tax Deductible: "Shaarei Tefilla Charity Fund", C/O Murray Shore, 31 Marwill Street, Toronto, Ontario, M3H 3L2, CANADA.
Israel Tax Deductible: "Lema'an Achai", The Lema'an Achai Center, 40/7 Nahal Lachish, Ramat Bet Shemesh, 99093, Israel.
By Phone 24/6 Donations Hotline (Hebrew): 02 99.999.33

To Volunteer Locally: Hotline Ezrat Achim: 02 9999822
Bet Shemesh Municipal Hotline: (Ms Shula Erev): 02 9909845

SMALL PRINT: In the happy event that the war finishes, and any funds remain, they will solely be used for helping families in need.


David Morris, Chairman
R.Avrohom Leventhal, Executive Director

Lema'an Achai - It's All About Caring

Direct Tel: +972 2 9997107
Office: +972 2 9991553
Fax: +972 2 9992398

40/7 Nahal Lachish
Ramat Beit Shemesh,
99093 Israel.


  1. have you seen these:


  2. won't they throw you out of RBS - or at least protest outside your home - for posting pictures of women?


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