Over 70% of Holocaust survivors need financial aid - comptroller

The report suggested one single information point be created to help survivors.

Holocaust Survivor Edward Mosberg outside Birkenau. (photo credit: WWW.FROMTHEDEPTHS.ORG)
Holocaust Survivor Edward Mosberg outside Birkenau.
Some 70% of Holocaust survivors require financial assistance, up 3% from three years ago, according to a report published Monday by State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman.
Three years ago, the Foundation for the Welfare of Holocaust Victims, which is under the Finance Ministry, was advised to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the needs of those who survived the Holocaust and are now living in Israel. It was provided with a budget of NIS 17 million and was able to obtain data on 22% of known survivors in three years.
At the time, extra funding was given to programs within the Welfare Ministry meant to help Holocaust survivors who are homebound. The ministry used 30% of its budget to help needy survivors between 2018 and 2019. It used its entire budget within “The National Plan,” which was NIS 58m. No large-scale effort to map who are the survivors and what their needs are was attempted.
Distress buttons, which summon medical help when pressed by the elderly in their homes, are funded by donations, and the 9,000 survivors who currently have them might lose them. The website maintained by the foundation as a primary source of information used by survivors to claim their pensions and rights was said to be “in need of improvement.”
The report also noted some points of improvement when compared with three years ago.
Intergovernmental transfer of data concerning Holocaust survivors has improved, and more support was offered to survivors during 2017-2019, it said. The Construction Ministry created a work plan to make public housing units used by survivors suitable for the elderly. It is missing NIS 21m. to complete the work, the report said.
It suggested that the various bodies create a single entity to provide survivors with information and to improve cooperation between state bodies and NGOs devoted to their well-being.