Golan residents start viral campaign to aid to Syrian refugees

“These are our neighbors and we see this as a mitzvah to help them in times of trouble."

IDF gives urgent treatment to Syria refugees, June 30, 2018. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)
IDF gives urgent treatment to Syria refugees, June 30, 2018.
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)
The Golan Regional Council has launched an initiative to collect items for children and humanitarian aid for Syrian refugees fleeing the conflict in southern Syria.
Hundreds of thousands have been forced flee their homes and villages to the buffer zone near Israel’s Golan border as fighting between the Assad regime and the rebels intensifies.
“The refugees have arrived [at the buffer zone] without basic equipment for proper survival,”  said Golan Regional Council head Eli Malka. “In addition to the humanitarian activities that the IDF has been carrying out in recent days, I have decided to open a center for collecting supplementary equipment in order to enable the refugees to exist in a humane manner.”
Malka explained that in the coming days there will be a mobilization and collection of items in each of the communities, and from there it will be taken to the council’s center and transferred to the IDF, which will give out the aid and items to Syrian refugees.
“We would love any families in the Golan to make sealed bags for a Syrian child with toys and small toys, coloring pages, crayons and sweets that will not melt, to provide them with a moment of sweet and sweet joy.
“These are our neighbors and we see this as a mitzvah to help them in times of trouble,” said Malka. “Thank you in advance to anyone who joins this mission.”
There was also a call for baby bottles, pacifiers, clothes, shoes, and other such items for the refugees.
Within hours the council’s Facebook post had been shared nearly 200 times and liked over 400 times with people from across the country volunteering to donate items, including from Jerusalem, the Galilee and Tel Aviv.
The Golan Regional Council, which is made up of about 32 Israeli villages and towns, has repeatedly appealed for urgently needed items, such as blankets, non-perishable food, toys and clothes.
 A Facebook post in response appealed to the residents of Rehaniya in the Haifa area and Kafr Kama in the lower Galilee on Wednesday to take part in the initiative, giving residents until Saturday to drop off items that will assist the refugees.
“The children’s toys or gift bags will be donated to comfort the [Syrian] children who are going through such a difficult period,” the post said, adding that on Sunday a truck would arrive and take them to the councils’ center on the Golan Heights.
People volunteered from Kibbutz Dan, offering to donate a box filled with games, adding: “We also translated a few games into Arabic. We will be happy to donate games in Arabic.”
All the aid collected by the council will be transferred to the IDF, who in turn will deliver it to the refugees.
Last week the IDF transferred humanitarian aid as part of a special operation, which took place over several hours. Three hundred tents were transferred along with 13 tons of food, 15 tons of baby food, medical equipment and medicine and 30 tons of clothing and footwear.
This humanitarian aid was specifically transferred by the IDF to camps where Syrians fleeing hostilities are residing in the southern and central Syrian Golan Heights.
Several people who have been injured during the fighting were also brought into the country for medical treatment.