Kuwaiti donors fund aid pack­ages for Ye­meni Jews

The Jerusalem Post - - FRONT PAGE - • By TAMARA ZIEVE

Vol­un­teers of the Ye­men­based char­ity Mona Re­lief de­liv­ered food pack­ages to poor Jewish fam­i­lies in Sanaa this week thanks to Kuwaiti do­na­tions.

It is the fourth time the or­ga­ni­za­tion has pro­vided aid to the tiny Jewish com­mu­nity that re­mains in Ye­men, as part of the NGO’s wider hu­man­i­tar­ian re­lief projects.

The do­na­tions be­gan in 2016 when a jour­nal­ist alerted Mona Re­lief founder and CEO

Fatik al-Ro­daini about the poor con­di­tions in which the Jewish com­mu­nity was liv­ing. Ro­daini vis­ited the fam­i­lies in De­cem­ber 2016, and met with their leader, Ye­hia Yousef. Sev­eral days later Ro­daini reached out to the com­mu­nity with food pack­ages, blan­kets and hy­giene kits funded by the NGO’s on­line fund-rais­ing cam­paign.

“That was the be­gin­ning of our ini­tia­tive to the Jewish mi­nor­ity in Sanaa,” Ro­daini told The Jerusalem Post. “I promised to help them monthly with food aid and medicine to Jewish mem­bers who are sick with chronic dis­eases. How­ever, I couldn’t ful­fill my com­mit­ments to­ward them due to the lack of re­sources. But I tried to help them an­nu­ally.”

Ro­daini has man­aged more than an­nual aid; the last two times, how­ever, were made pos­si­ble with the aid of anony­mous Kuwaiti donors.

Asked about the un­usual cir­cum­stances of Kuwaitis do­nat­ing to Jews, Ro­daini said that not only had the donors ac­cepted to help the cause when he had asked, they sub­se­quently of­fered un­so­licited do­na­tions to the com­mu­nity.

“We are talk­ing about hu­man­ity and not about their re­li­gion,” said Ro­daini, adding that the NGO de­liv­ers sup­plies to 86 Jews in Ye­men, mak­ing up some 20 fam­i­lies.

Most of Ye­men’s Jews im­mi­grated to Is­rael, flee­ing per­se­cu­tion, many on Op­er­a­tion Magic Car­pet from June 1949 to Septem­ber 1950.

The few that re­main in Sanaa and Rada’a con­tinue to face per­se­cu­tion on a reg­u­lar ba­sis. •

(Mona Re­lief Ye­men)

MONA RE­LIEF vol­un­teers de­liver food pack­ages on Sun­day to Jews in Sanaa, Ye­men.

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