Please help the survivors of the massacre at Kibbutz Nir Oz!
No words can describe the horrors that took place in Kibbutz Nir Oz on that dreadful Shabbat on October 7, 2023. Currently, one in four residents of Nir Oz have not yet returned to their family. They are either murdered, kidnapped or missing.
On October 6, 2023, the eve of the murderous terrorist attack, about 400 people lived in Nir Oz. Not a large kibbutz, which is less than 2 kilometers from the border of the Gaza Strip. At the end of October 7, only 300 of them were rescued. As of this moment, we know of 25 dead and about 75 kidnapped - about a quarter of the residents of the kibbutz are not here. In addition, at least 15 people from Thailand who worked on the Kibbutz have been brutally murdered. The survivors of the 7/10 events went through severe trauma. They fought for their lives, in their residence, in bomb shelters, when all around were shots, attempts to break in, and the burning of their houses.
Beyond the serious injuries to the body and spirit - the kibbutz suffered enormous damages, which must be rehabilitated to allow the residents to return to their homes. About half of the kibbutz houses were burned beyond recognition; those that were not, were looted and vandalized to the extreme. All vehicles in the kibbutz were burned or vandalized. The bustling dining room, and the “Kolbo” (the local grocery store) that had been renovated in the past year, were set on fire, and burned. The economy of Kibbutz Nir Oz relies heavily on agriculture. All the tractors and agricultural tools necessary for the agricultural activities were stolen or set on fire. The Nirlat factory in the kibbutz was significantly damaged in the attack. Destruction, there is no other word. It is important to emphasize that the kibbutz is currently defined as a closed military zone, so there is no agreed estimate of all the damages.
The Nir Oz community that survived this hell is now mostly in Eilat, trying to recuperate and understand how to continue from here. It is a strong community, which knows wars and evacuations, but such a disaster, on such a scale, it neither knew nor imagined. The residents of the kibbutz are shocked, naturally. We - family members of the survivors of the massacre and of the abducted and missing - are making every effort to support the residents of the kibbutz and its community in these difficult times and with the future in mind. Nir Oz will return to being a home, but for that to happen, a lot of investment is required, physically, financially and mentally. We are looking for partners in the effort.
In the midst of the shock and chaos, and between the funerals of our loved ones, we compiled a list of our main needs for the immediate, medium and long term:
A. Psychological treatments for the survivors of the massacre and the families of the abducted and the missing - psychiatric and psychological treatments with immediate availability and no limitations, various therapeutic activities for children (animal-assisted therapy, music therapy, art activities, sports activities, occupational therapy and more).
B. Material support - the people of Nir Oz lost everything: their houses, furniture, clothing, personal equipment, toys, electrical appliances, and more. They don't have credit cards on them and even if they do, the people don't work and have no income. After consulting with psychologists and social workers, we realized that one of the ways to restore the people's sense of resilience is by ensuring their financial independence. We need to immediately provide them with credit cards "loaded" with money so that they can buy everything they need, for themselves and their children, and not feel needy.
C. Furniture and basic equipment - in a few weeks the Nir Oz evacuees will be moved to some kind of temporary housing since almost all the houses were completely burned down. Nir Oz refugees will have to furnish and equip the housing units they will receive (some type of upgraded trailer or similar) with basic equipment such as a refrigerator, oven, microwave, electric kettle, toaster, television, computer and more.
D. Rent financing for families who want to live in other places in the country - not all families will want to live in the building or the caravan site that will be built, someday. Many of them want to live close to their family members in other parts of the country. People who have been through the worst cannot be forced to live in a place that does not give them a sense of security. Therefore, there is an urgent need to secure funds for rent for people who will choose to reside elsewhere.
E. Vehicles - all the vehicles of the kibbutz were burned. It is necessary to purchase or rent vehicles for several months. Car rental cost, including fuel and insurance.
Please lend a hand to the families of Nir Oz who experienced the worst events anyone could imagine and found themselves destitute, trying to digest the magnitude of the horror, and return their loved ones from Hamas captivity.
Any donation would be most appreciated.
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