Dear chaverot, WIZO members around the world,
As I write these words around midnight Monday night, Israel is once again under attack. More than 150 rockets have been fired at Israeli civilians. As Jews marched on the streets of our capital on Jerusalem Day, rockets fired from Gaza rained down on the city (even forcing the evacuation of the Knesset plenum), and large-scale riots and violence shook Jerusalem and threatened its residents.
We know that you are following events with deep concern. The images on your TV screens and smartphones are deeply disturbing, and no one knows how long this new round of violence and terror will go on. What we do know is that, as always, we will defend ourselves and we will prevail.
And as always, we deeply encouraged and strengthened by your solidarity and unwavering support.
The rocket attacks have caused widespread closings in southern and central Israel tomorrow (Tuesday), affecting numerous WIZO educational, welfare and volunteer frameworks. Here are the WIZO institutions and facilities that will be closed:
Early childhood: 66 day care centers, affecting nearly 5,000 children throughout southern and central Israel, including Sderot, Beersheva, Dimona, Kiryat Gat, Yavne, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Givatayim, Rishon Lezion, Nes Tziona, Lod, Rehovot, Bat Yam, Holon, Herzilya, and 8 of WIZO's 25 DCCs in Tel Aviv (only those with easily accessible shelters will operate). The exception is the class for welfare children in our comprehensive day care centers.
Education: Beit Tzipora in Kiryat Malachi and Ashkelon
WIZO Israel: Adi and Makom Balev in Beersheva, and more than 30 WIZO centers and second hand clothing shops throughout southern and central Israel.
Our two Gina Fromer shelters for women victims of domestic violence and their children are operating as usual. Here is a brief report we received from them:
Jerusalem: "The rockets fired at Jerusalem took us by surprise, and we urgently rushed to gather the children, who had been playing outside the shelter, and they joined their mothers in the facility's bomb shelter."
Ashdod (which has been a frequent target of Hamas rockets in the past): "The staff, women and children practiced running from their rooms to the bomb shelter."
WIZO will continue to serve, care for and protect tens of thousands of Israeli children, youth, women and families, and especially the most vulnerable, as best we can.
Let us hope and pray for the safety of all our citizens, and of the IDF soldiers protecting us tonight, tomorrow, and always.
We will continue to update you as the situation develops.
With warm regards,
Chairperson, World WIZO