(New York, NY -- August 18, 2004) -- With many months of recovery and reconstruction work needed to repair the devastation left by Hurricane Charley, Hadassah the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, has launched a special appeal to raise assistance funds. According to the latest figures, the damage amounts to billions of dollars and has left thousands of Floridians homeless, among them members of the Jewish community.
In the area of greatest storm devastation - Port Charlotte, Ft. Myers, Naples and Lakeland - Hadassah has more than 1,100 members. Because communications were extensively damaged by the hurricane, it is impossible to know exactly how many Hadassah members are in dire need of help, explained Karen Eisler, President of the Hadassah’s Florida Central Region, which includes the area hardest hit.
“Much of the population in this area is elderly and our hearts go out to them as they cope with reconstructing their lives at a time when they should be enjoying retirement,” Eisler said.
“Hadassah has always stepped up to the plate - both in Israel and the U.S. - where we can have a positive impact,” said June Walker, National President. “Unfortunately, this is the second time in a dozen years that the wake of a hurricane has left South Florida devastated. In 1992, we were there after Hurricane Andrew. Now, in the aftermath of Hurricane Charley, we can once again make a positive change for these families by the actions we take.”
Contributions can be made to Hadassah headquarters in New York for distribution to the storm devastated area. Please make the check payable to Hadassah and earmark both check and envelope to “Hurricane Charley Relief Fund.” Send to: Hadassah 50 West 58th Street, NY, 10019. Donations can also be made on Hadassah’s website: www.hadassah.org .