Devastated communities. Unimaginable injuries and fatalities. A disaster of unspeakable dimension and magnitude.
These are the words that Israel’s Magen David Adom paramedics used to describe the situation in earthquake-ravaged Nepal. Almost immediately after the disaster, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) dispatched a 747 jet carrying medical personnel, search and rescue teams, medical equipment and other aid materials to the battered Himalayan nation. A second and third plane quickly followed.
The Israeli delegation’s mission in disaster-stricken Nepal was two-fold. Medical personnel set up a field hospital to provide emergency and ongoing medical treatment to the wounded. Quickly, medical personnel began offering basic medical assistance to the Nepalese. At the same time, search and rescue teams, including three sniffer dogs from the IDF’s elite Oketz unit, combed the rubble of collapsed buildings for possible survivors.
As the teams from the Jewish nation set about their task, a clearer picture of the scale of devastation in the mountainous country began to emerge. Three days after the magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck the area surrounding the capital Kathmandu, the death toll was over 4,300. The figure continued to climb, reaching 8,500 with dozens missing. Over 16,000 were injured. In the capital, entire communities were laid waste and hundreds of thousands were displaced.
It is within this context that the Israeli field hospital offered a lifeline to those in need of treatment. With extensive hands-on experience obtained in the wake of natural disasters in Haiti, the Philippines and Japan, the team from the Jewish nation came equipped with all the necessary apparatus and supplies to construct and operate a fully functional medical facility. They were able to treat 1,500 patients, perform 85 operations, and deliver 8 babies. IDF teams also assisted in assessing over 300 buildings to determine if they were safe.
As the delegation from the Jewish State embarked on their lifesaving work, Bridges for Peace answered a call to strengthen the hands of the people of Israel for the work they were doing in helping the people of Nepal. “They are going physically,” explains Rebecca Brimmer, International President and CEO of Bridges for Peace, “we can join them in prayer and through financial assistance.”
“Let’s join our hands and link our arms with our Israeli brothers,” says Brimmer. “This is a wonderful opportunity for Christians and Jews to join together to show God’s love to the people of Nepal in their time of great need.” The costs to provide this level of assistance are immense. Christians gave, and are still giving, to pay for the outreach. To contribute, click here.
Source: Ilse Posselt, BFP News Correspondent
Photo Credit: Photos by Ashernet and IDF
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