Johanna Ginsberg’s recent article about Israel’s preparedness in the event of another catastrophic forest fire offered important information and insight to those who were impacted by the fire’s devastation (“Firefighter: Is Israel ready for next one?” Jan. 19). In particular, it mentioned that Yemin Orde Youth Village, “destroyed in the fire, is slowly being rebuilt, through government dollars.”
Yemin Orde Youth Village is about to launch a new comprehensive master plan to rebuild the Village to reflect its original beauty and splendor prior to the fire. It should be noted, however, that funds for rebuilding the Village stem from our global community of donors, not only through Israeli “government dollars.” Yemin Orde did, indeed, receive Israeli government assistance immediately following the fire for emergency infrastructure repairs, temporary housing and removal of debris.
The Village received $7.6 million from generous U.S. supporters during the months immediately following the fire. In fact, just in New Jersey alone, synagogues, foundations, and individuals came together to raise an incredible $1 million for the Village’s fire emergency recovery fund. Also, thanks to the support of the Jewish National Fund, the Village will see new trees and replace much of the landscaping that was ravaged by the fire, too.
We are grateful for the Israeli government’s quick response to address the immediate needs of the Village and its children in the days and weeks after the fire. But please credit our dedicated and generous supporters for helping Yemin Orde plan for the future and rebuild the Village to reflect the splendor and beauty of Mount Carmel.
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