IsraAID responds to Hurricane Ian in Florida
After Category 4 Hurricane Ian caused major storm surges, flooding, and loss of life across Florida, Israel’s largest non-governmental humanitarian aid organization, IsraAID, is mobilizing an Emergency Response Team to support recovery and cleanup efforts in affected communities. More than 100 people have been killed in the destruction, which U.S. President Joe Biden said was “among the worst in U.S. history.”
IsraAID’s initial team of Israeli volunteers and disaster response experts will arrive in Lee County, one of the hardest hit areas in Florida, on Monday, joining up with teams from partner Team Rubicon, an international disaster response organization founded by U.S. military veterans. The teams will work closely with local authorities to assess the situation and identify communities and households in need of support, focusing on debris removal and cleanup.
In recent years, IsraAID has responded to repeated disasters and emergencies in the U.S., supporting households who are uninsured, ineligible for government support, or need extra help to carry out the physical labor of removing debris. Most recently, IsraAID collaborated with Team Rubicon to respond to devastating tornadoes in Kentucky last December. Since 2017, IsraAID has worked in communities affected by hurricanes in Florida, Texas, North Carolina, and Puerto Rico, as well as repeated wildfires in Northern California.
Donations to support IsraAID’s disaster relief efforts can be made via the IsraAID Emergency Fund.
IsraAID’s Emergency Operations Officer Karmit Berlinsky, who will be leading the initial mission to Florida, said:
“IsraAID has long-standing ties with communities across Florida, and has supported relief efforts after multiple previous hurricanes. These Emergency Response missions reinforce our strong belief in and commitment to working together with local communities to build resilience and build back stronger.”
IsraAID U.S.’s Chief Development Officer James Cohen, who grew up in Florida, said:
“Cleaning up Hurricane Ian’s devastation will take the entire community’s participation. Floridians are strong, and IsraAID is proud to partner with Team Rubicon and the local communities to provide assistance in the recovery. We’re on the ground in Florida because we go wherever we are needed.”
Further information is available on request, including interviews with IsraAID CEO Yotam Polizer and other individuals involved in this operation.
Email: [email protected]
Photographs from IsraAID’s previous U.S.-based emergency response missions can be found here.