On Wednesday, the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews placed five bomb shelters in areas of Ashkelon identified by local authorities as lacking ample protection.
The locations included residential neighborhoods where homes had no shelters as well as commercial zones where people had no safe place to go when incoming Gazan rockets are detected.
The latest installation comes in addition to numerous other safety projects made possible by the IFCJ across Ashkelon, including a mobile command center donated earlier this year, which allows the municipal leadership to manage the city through these types of crises.
The IFCJ also purchased four protected vehicles that are used by local security officers to arrive quickly and safely to the scene of rocket attacks.
The newly placed shelters are part of an ongoing effort by the IFCJ, in coordination with the IDF Home Front Command, to ensure that the Israeli public is properly protected in the face of a growing array of threats.
In recent years, IFCJ has donated more than 400 such shelters throughout Israel at a cost of over $6.2 million. An additional $16.2 million has been allocated towards the renovation and equipping of 2,500 existing shelters.
The IFCJ has invested more than $69 million directly in homefront defense projects in areas of the country, primarily near the southern and northern borders, that face an ongoing threat from rocket and missile attacks.
“Strengthening our nation’s homefront defenses, particularly in these times of security crisis, has long been one of the primary objectives of the Fellowship. We see it as a central part of our mandate to be able to ensure that the people of Israel are provided the physical protection they need,” IFCJ President Yael Eckstein said.
“These shelters not only protect people in time of need but are a critical reflection of the spirit of solidarity that enables our donor community of hundreds of thousands around the world to know that they are partners in caring for the people of Israel. We are deeply appreciative of their support in allowing us to quickly and effectively implement life-saving solutions in these times of need,” she said.