Helping the Poor in a City Still Under Rocket Fire

By Nicole Jansezian

Though routine has returned to some cities and communities in Israel, residents of other cities such as Ashkelon are living in a warped sense of reality where rockets are still launched in their direction and the sounds of war in Gaza pulsate through the city on a daily basis.

“The city is far from experiencing any sense of normalcy. Seven months into the war, they are still the target of unrelenting rocket attacks from Gaza,” said Alice Mizrahi, head of CBN Israel’s Victims of Terror department. “Plus, they hear all the bombings in Gaza as well.” 

More than 1,000 rockets were fired at the city of Ashkelon on and immediately following October 7, with over 180 direct hits.

The city was partially evacuated after October 7, but since then, most residents who initially fled have returned despite the ongoing threats. The seaside city is a few miles north of the Gaza Strip and was the most fired upon place in Israel on and since October 7.

“In Sderot (which had traditionally been the most attacked city in the south and is closer to Gaza), they added bomb shelters, but the people in Ashkelon are living without them so people had nowhere to go but to hide in their stairwell and pray for a miracle,” explained Alice.

Of its approximately 130,000 residents, many are immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Ethiopia, and many are elderly who are living in poverty and struggling with food insecurity.

That’s why CBN Israel linked arms with local partners to help make sure families could put food on the table during this difficult and uncertain time. CBN Israel and its ministry partners delivered food packages and grocery vouchers to hundreds of families who live below the poverty line. 

“These vulnerable and needy families in Ashkelon are incredibly grateful for the kindness and support from CBN Israel donors. Thanks to caring friends like you, they have nutritious food to feed their children and families,” Alice said.

Please continue to pray for the nation and people of Israel during this challenging time of war. Let’s pray for an end to the conflict, for the release of the remaining hostages in Gaza, and for the opportunity to rebuild the cities and communities devastated by the October 7 attacks.

Nicole Jansezian is the media coordinator for CBN Israel. A long-time journalist, Nicole was previously the news editor of All Israel News and All Arab News and a journalist at The Associated Press. On her YouTube channel, Nicole gives a platform to the minority communities in Jerusalem and highlights stories of fascinating people in this intense city. Born and raised in Queens, N.Y., she lives in Jerusalem with her husband, Tony, and their three children.

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