Employees of KKL-JNF, led by the Workers’ Organization, volunteered “days off” to assist and contribute to citizens and soldiers affected by the war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Under the organization’s initiative, a fair was opened offering products from businesses surrounding Gaza and the northern part of Israel.
On the first and second nights of Chanukah, the KKL-JNF Workers’ Organization transformed Hangar 11, a venue at the Tel Aviv Port, into a giant shopping fair for businesses from the Gaza Envelope and northern Israel that have been impacted or displaced due to “Operation Swords of Iron.” Many citizens attended to purchase blue and white products.
The fair, organized by the Workers’ Organization of KKL-JNF, was held free of charge for business owners, without rental fees, electricity costs or any expenses for setting up, all thanks to the contribution of the KKL-JNF Workers’ Organization. Additionally, workers donated vacation days to fund various purchases for soldiers and citizens on the front lines.
Among the businesses and business owners who came to Tel Aviv to sell their goods were an artist from Kfar Maimon creating artworks from parts of missiles falling in the southern areas; a girl from Sderot selling yellow bracelets with the Star of David and donating the money to soldiers; and a young entrepreneur who gave birth just two months ago, and sold handmade textile products for babies and children, but whose business is currently closed.
The Workers’ Organization of KKL-JNF calls on Israeli citizens to support businesses that have closed or relocated due to the war.
Israel Goldstein, chairman of the National Workers’ Organization of KKL-JNF, said that “difficult days pass over all of us, especially the businesses that were affected and closed during the war. KKL-JNF workers volunteered for the residents of the Gaza periphery and the north, donating vacation days that were converted into a donation of one million shekels to produce this wonderful event, providing an opportunity for businesses to come and earn a dignified living. We call on everyone to come here and buy blue and white products.”
Yaeli Cohen is the owner of a business for cakes, cookies and pastries in Ashkelon: “Since October 7, my business has not been operating. I had a home bakery for pastries, cakes and cookies, and deliveries were made throughout the country, mainly to Tel Aviv and the center of Israel. Unfortunately, due to the war, I had to close the business, and I hope it will resume soon. I want to take this opportunity to thank the KKL-JNF Workers’ Organization for this wonderful fair. It takes us out of the house a bit, allows us to meet people, engages us in activity, and also contributes to income as much as possible.”
Lior Azran Aflalo is the owner of Rianbo, a business specializing in handmade baby clothes and accessories. She gave birth just two weeks before the outbreak of war on Oct. 7, making extensive preparations for her maternity leave and stocking up on inventory for the entire period. However, due to the outbreak of the war, the business had to close.
“I encountered the events on Oct. 7th firsthand, spending more than 30 hours in the security room with my family, including my husband and our two daughters. The youngest was only two weeks old at the time. Since that day, my business has been closed. Now, we are trying to get back to some normalcy, to see people and revive the business. I want to take this opportunity to thank the KKL-JNF Workers’ Organization for putting together this incredible fair in Tel Aviv.”
Mati Orlov is a sculptor renowned for sculpting statues from iron and copper displayed both in Israel and around the world. His work, done by hand, is one-of-a-kind. He has been sculpting his entire life since he arrived in Kfar Maimon Village in 1936.
He grew up in a family of artists, particularly influenced by his aunt Hannah Orlov. Following his complex personal journey, Orlov sculpts the history of his life, depicting events, including those following his residence in the Gaza Envelope. At the Hangar 11 business fair, Orlov exhibited his creations made from parts of missiles fired into the Gaza Envelope by the Hamas organization. Among his work are menorahs, sculptures and other pieces. His work is displayed in the Palmach Museum in Tel Aviv, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Prime Minister’s Office and even in the home of Benjamin Netanyahu.