A terror attack is defined as a direct hit from an act of hostility of enemy forces, or an indirect hit that was caused due to an act of hostility or related to it, or a strike as a result of an act of violence in which the goal was to hurt a person because he belongs to a certain ethnic nationality, as long as it's a result of the Israeli-Arab conflict or was done by a terror organization.
According to data that was published by Bituach Leumi (Israel's National Security) in May 2015, 2,538 citizens were murdered in acts of violence since the end of the War of Independence until today, and in the last year alone, 31 citizens were murdered. The terror attacks have left 2,997 orphans (101 of them lost both parents), 850 widows and 943 bereaved parents. Since May, there have been many more casualties, and sadly, the numbers are rising constantly.
Vision for Israel began helping victims of terror following a murderous attack on a bus in Jerusalem in February 1996, an event that personally affected Barry and Batya Segal, the founders of Vision for Israel. In this attack, their eldest daughter lost 3 of her schoolmates. Some time after that, around Passover, another acquaintance of their daughter’s was murdered in another bus bombing. These were bus lines which their daughter used often, as well.
Due to the loss, Barry and Batya began to visit the relatives of the victims who were murdered in these attacks and other tragedies. They met broken people in great distress who have lost their dear ones and were mourning for them. Some were survivors who suffered physically, from severe wounds in their bodies, and emotionally as they struggled to continue living in peace. Barry and Batya came to support them in their hardships.
Since that Passover of 1996, comforting families who have been torn apart by terror attacks has become one of the highest priorities of Vision for Israel. We began with giving a small financial gift to each family, and with the opening of The Joseph Storehouse in 1998, the aid was expended to more than 200 terror victim families each year.
Unfortunately, due to the complex reality in Israel, the number of terror victim families continues to climb. Within a short time, the number of families shot up to 3,000. Vision for Israel increased the aid to families accordingly, and throughout the years, the aid has also gone to help those affected by rocket attacks from Lebanon and Gaza.
Thanks to the help that comes from donors from all over the world, we are able to give a wider range of aid, which includes physical, emotional and financial support, as well as provide medical supplies and household items. This aid is of utmost importance to families and enables them to focus on healing from the traumatic experience without having to worry about daily needs. Our heart is for Vision for Israel to be the hand of support that comforts and supports these hurting people throughout their recovery process.