Israeli Aid Group Sends Emergency Experts to Flood-ravaged Texas

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Texas National Guardsmen rescue a resident by boat during flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Aug. 27, 2017. Army National Guard photo by Lt. Zachary West

(JNS.org) IsraAID, an Israeli international humanitarian organization, says it’s sending a team of experts from Israel and the U.S. to assist Texas residents dealing with the after effects of Tropical Storm Harvey.

IsraAID, which is coordinating with local Jewish communities, local government in Texas and the Israeli Consul General, plans to deploy five to seven experts to provide two-stage response to the disaster, with the first stage focusing on removing debris and cleaning homes, then offering psycho-social trauma support to residents.

“In crises with large-scale destruction, national and international aid efforts typically focus on practical, physical support, with limited resources allocated to the mental and emotional rehabilitation of affected populations,” said Yotam Polizer, co-CEO of IsraAID.

“For the most vulnerable groups, notably children and the elderly, time is of critical importance; the longer these groups are forced to remain in shelters, the higher the chance of long-term mental health problems such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), a disorder that can have a debilitating and long-term impact.”

Meanwhile, the American Jewish Committee announced a $34,000 grant of aid to the victims of flooding in Texas. This grant will be provided to the American Red Cross, IsraAID and the Jewish Family Service of Houston.

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