Following the deadly earthquake that struck Nepal on Saturday, Jewish Federation & Family Services, Orange County is working with our national and international partners to respond. Through Jewish Federations of North America and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the global Jewish community is standing alongside the State of Israel to respond to this humanitarian crisis. Together, we can be extraordinarily proud of these efforts. We were there to provide immediate relief and long-term assistance after the earthquake in Haiti, the typhoon in the Philippines, and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. And we will be there for the people of Nepal.
THE LATEST FROM OUR PARTNERS ON THE GROUND:
The death toll following Saturday’s massive earthquake in Nepal has risen to over 4,000. Thousands are injured and tens of thousands are homeless. Aid groups are receiving reports from remote villages across the mountainous country describing devastation, destruction and dwindling resources.
Due to impassable roads and landslides, rescue teams are struggling to reach those in need. Nepal’s poor road network and the limited number of helicopters are also hampering rescue efforts and the distribution of aid.
Needs are expected to rise dramatically as reliable supplies of food, water and medical supplies are depleted. Continued aftershocks spread fear and uncertainty. Kathmandu airport is struggling to efficiently manage the influx of aid flights. There are a number of Jewish organizations on the ground in Nepal.
JDC, our trusted partner, is actively assessing the situation and working to provide support where it is needed most. Here is what they are doing:
- Partnering with the IDF field hospital that departed for Nepal this morning (April 27) by providing medical equipment including two neonatal incubators.
- Supporting the Magen David Adom medical team that departed yesterday morning to serve with the Nepalese Red Cross.
- Securing emergency medical supplies for transfer to Nepal.
- Working with UNICEF to provide emergency supplies for children responding to needs in shelter, nutrition and water and sanitation.
- Deploying a rapid assessment team is scheduled to arrive in Nepal on Wednesday. The team is composed of JDC emergency management experts including an Indian national.
- Activating the JDC network to identify active local, Asian and international organizations responding in Nepal.
- Coordinating with the Israeli Embassy, U.S. State Department and Israeli and Jewish organizations as well as the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
- Setting up the Jewish Coalition for Disaster Response, which is managed by JDC. (April 26).
- Partnering with Tevel B'tzedek, an Israeli NGO that has been on the ground in Nepal for over eight years, to provide immediate emergency relief in the area of shelter and other urgent needs.
Israel sent an Israel Defense Forces delegation to conduct search and rescue operations. It has also established a fully functioning field hospital including operating rooms, X-ray equipment and pediatric care.
- Following landing delays at the Kathmandu airport, an IDF C-130J aircraft departed Israel Monday morning (April 27) carrying 90 rescue personnel and equipment.
- An El Al 747 aircraft and a second IDF transport plane left Monday afternoon (Israel time) to Kathmandu with some additional 170 rescue and medical staff and 90 tons of medical supplies including a mobile field hospital – a total of five Israeli planes will land today bringing much needed supplies and trained personnel to assist with the rescue efforts.
- Approximately 50 Israelis are still considered “out of contact.” Many Israelis are trapped in the mountains along the hiking routes. Israeli government is working to extract them, an effort complicated by the fact that all helicopters have been nationalized.
- On Sunday (April 26) evening, three premature babies born to surrogate mothers for Israeli couples, along with their parents and an injured Israeli man, arrived in Israel aboard an IDF plane. Approximately 200 Israelis are making their way to the airport in Kathmandu this evening local time in anticipation of being airlifted home by aircraft which flew supplies into the region.
Chabad of Nepal has been a staple for Jewish travelers looking to connect with Judaism. It is also participating in relief efforts on the ground in Nepal.
- Chabad continues to remain an anchor-point for Israeli and Jewish travelers
- Magen David Adom established a first-aid station at the Chabad House in Kathmandu
- Chabad is continuing to work to identify and locate missing Israelis and reach those in need of assistance