Thursday, October 8, 2015

SPECIAL REPORT: IsraAid helping Syrians off the boats in Greece

From JewishNewsOnline UK

Volunteers from Israeli aid agency IsraAid are helping Syrian refugees off the boats in Greece. But they need your help, hears Stephen Oryszczuk

The man supervising Israel’s rescue of Syrian refugees off the Greek coast is lost for words. He’s been asked to sum up the scale of the crisis. “You’re standing there on the beach, with all these little rubber boats bringing thousands of people every day,” he says finally. “Honestly? It’s like a tragic scene from a Hollywood epic.”

This is Yotam Polizer, regional director at IsraAID, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) that relies on donations to offer emergency medical and psychological support to Syrian refugees arriving in Greece, Serbia, Croatia, Jordan and Iraq.

His social activism has taken him from the Negev to Nepal via Japanese tsunamis and typhoons in the Philippines, but only now is he speechless. It’s not surprising. He is on the front-line of a mass migration, the biggest movement of people in 70 years, with 70,000 arriving in Europe every week. And he has just 12 people to help him.

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