BOOKLET SERIES

Israel

HUMANITARIAN AID

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Israel: Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

Israel’s story is about an indigenous people overcoming 1,900 years of oppression to achieve freedom in their ancestral home. But the challenges didn’t end when the Jewish state was established in 1948. Over the last 70 years, Israelis have faced wars, terrorism, a lack of natural resources, economic hardships, the need to quickly integrate many immigrants and refugees, and many other problems. By developing innovative solutions to these harsh circumstances and sharing them with others, Israel has become a global leader in humanitarian aid. Today, Israel uses its technology and know-how to save lives and help societies grow all over the world.

Emergency Assistance

With over 70 years of expertise in emergency response, Israel is among the first on the scene at international disaster sites.

• Israel Defense Forces (IDF) medical and rescue teams have responded to earthquakes in all corners of the globe, including: Mexico (1985); Armenia (1988); Turkey (1999); El Salvador, India, and Peru (2001); Indonesia (2006); Haiti (2010); Japan (2011); and Nepal (2015).
• In 1994, during the Rwandan genocide, Israel initiated Operation Interns for Hope, establishing a field hospital in neighboring Zaire to bring medical aid to refugees.
• Israel sent aid supplies to Sri Lanka in response to the devastating flood of 2003.
• Israel was among the first three countries to provide aid to victims of the 2004 tsunami that ravaged parts of Southeast Asia.
• Israel sent humanitarian and medical aid to the Philippines when it was devastated by Typhoon Haiyan in 2013 and to Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in 2017.
• Israel has treated thousands of Syrians wounded in the civil war despite Syria’s ongoing hostilities against Israel

Agricultural Assistance

Experienced in making agriculture flourish in a once-barren land, Israel now helps developing countries expand their food production.

• Israel’s Volcani Center for agricultural research has partnered with 32 countries, providing superior cattle bloodlines to improve milk output and assisting the dairy industries of developing countries.
• From Poland to Turkmenistan, farmers work alongside Israeli irrigation specialists from the agribusiness company Netafim to improve crop yields while helping to preserve the environment.
• Israel offers agricultural training to farmers from Gaza, the West Bank, and Egypt.
• Using a mutant gene, Israeli scientists have developed strains of corn to resist witchweed, a parasite that harms crops in much of sub-Saharan Africa, leading to improved crop yields.
• Israel is working with the U.S. to give agricultural aid and training to Uganda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Rwanda in the areas of food production, crop cycles, and the environment.

Sharing Medical Discoveries

Technologies and medical programs developed in Israel save and improve lives around the world.

• In 23 years, the Israeli organization Save A Child’s Heart (SACH) has treated over 4,900 children suffering from congenital and rheumatic heart disease in 57 countries where quality medical care is unavailable.
• A natural bacterium discovered in Israel helps control mosquitoes and black flies, preventing river blindness and malaria in 11
African nations and reducing infection along China’s Yangtze River by 90 percent.
• Israeli ophthalmologists travel to countries throughout the developing world to treat preventable blindness and ocular disease. Teams of Israeli doctors set up “eye camps,” bringing high-tech treatments that are otherwise unavailable.
• Israel’s official emergency service, Magen David Adom, trains first aid instructors from developing countries to teach life-saving techniques in their home countries.

Development Assistance

Having successfully realized the Zionist pioneers’ dream of “making the desert bloom,” Israel now utilizes its expertise and innovative technology so that other nations may blossom.

• Founded in 1958, the Israel Center for International Cooperation (MASHAV) assists developing nations with environmental, educational, development, and emergency preparedness programs.
• MASHAV conducts 300 courses for emerging nations annually and has trained over 270,000 participants in over 140 countries,
from Albania to Zimbabwe.
• Israel worked closely with India to help it develop irrigation and desalination projects to reduce waste and increase access to water for all of India’s citizens.
• In 2006, using a development plan crafted at Israel’s Ben-Gurion University, the Brazilian state of Ceara increased economic growth while reducing inequality, a model now being adopted elsewhere in South America.

Educational Assistance

Transformed from a struggling new nation into a successful, vibrant state, Israel passes the lessons it has learned onto other countries around the world.

• Named after Israel’s fourth prime minister, the Golda Meir Mount Carmel Training Center was founded in 1961 to improve the lives
and positions of women through education.
• Innovation: Africa brings Israeli solar energy to African villages to help them keep the lights on at school and power wells that allow children to spend their time learning instead of looking for water.
• The Rwanda Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village, a home for Rwandan children orphaned by that country’s genocide, is modeled after a youth village for Israeli orphans. The village opened in 2008 and now is home to 500 young Rwandans.
• Israel is training teachers in 46 countries in Africa and five countries in South America.

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