Supporting the elderly in Israel
Critical support for the elderly in Israel who are living in the war zone
In Israel, Chamah provides services to hundreds of elderly year-round in Ashkelon, Ofakim and Kiryat Malachi. However, in the midst of this war, the need and urgency have greatly increased. In the town of Ofakim about fifty people were murdered and many were wounded in the October 7th massacre.
Many elderly and infirm who live in the towns and cities close to Gaza that were attacked are very apprehensive about leaving their homes more than absolutely necessary. Additionally, the frequent red alerts signaling an incoming rocket strike pose a pressing challenge for them to be able to reach safety within the requisite 12-40 seconds, compounding the stress and reluctance of these individuals to venture outside.
Chamah is now providing ongoing emergency assistance for these elderly individuals in need. Cooked meals, featuring hot and freshly prepared nutritious options, are provided to ensure their well-being. Additionally, food boxes are distributed, containing essential home staples. Food coupons offer further support, enabling them to access necessary supplies for when they do venture out.
Recognizing the reluctance of the elderly to leave their homes, dedicated doctors visit them at home and conduct examinations during these visits, ensuring that the health needs of the elderly are met within the safety of their homes. Nurses also make house visits, recording check-ups in personal health folders to track and address health concerns.
Furthermore, mental health care is a crucial component of this initiative. Psychologists and social workers visit to alleviate loneliness, stress, and anxiety among the elderly. These professionals provide essential emotional support, recognizing the impact of isolation on mental well-being.
To combat loneliness and provide additional companionship, volunteers play a vital role. They visit the elderly, engaging in friendly conversations over a cup of tea, and bring reading books and other items to occupy their time.
Although medical insurance covers the actual medical services for the elderly, the home visits are not covered. Chamah is taking care of the logistics and covering transportation costs for doctors and nurses conducting home visits, and for the volunteers who visit the homebound seniors.