Yad Sarah, Israel’s largest nongovernmental social and health-care service provider, has opened the doors of its state-of-the-art “Yirmiyahu 33” Rehabilitation and Wellness Hotel in Jerusalem, providing shelter and care for displaced individuals with disabilities and the elderly amid war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
The initiative is part of the Israeli NGO’s country-wide Emergency Wartime Relief Campaign, extending life-saving medical and rehabilitation support from the homefront to home care.
As the conflict escalates, the need for shelter and specialized care continues to grow. Yad Sarah’s hotel offers a sanctuary for hundreds of Israel’s more than 120,000 internally displaced individuals from threat areas in Israel’s south and north. With many hotels in Israel reporting full occupancy due to the mass wartime displacement, Yad Sarah helps fill a crucial gap, ensuring that those who require accessible conditions have access to vital services that they may not have elsewhere.
As the first fully accessible hotel in Israel, it offers evacuees a haven of respite to meet their individual needs for recuperation and rest. This includes specialized nursing care and deluxe rehabilitation facilities, including full-board dining facilities, medical equipment, adjustable hospital beds, mobile hoists, medicines and a volunteer-lead team that is available 24/7. The hotel is also home to the Center for Wellness and Respite, a haven for families coping with the tragedy of stillbirth. The center—the first of its kind in Israel and possibly worldwide—has hosted 14 women or couples who had little else to turn to since the war began.
The hotel’s amenities and infrastructure are designed to be fully accessible for wheelchair users and those with other physical disabilities and conditions. Amid the chaos of conflict, the hotel maintains an atmosphere of serenity and tranquility to ensure as much comfort and compassion as possible during turbulent times.
To meet the heightened crisis demand, the organization’s branches and thousands of volunteers have broadly expanded their activities. This includes the evacuation by volunteer drivers of Yad Sarah’s wheelchair-accessible van unit of around 100 residents from combat zones in the south, including those with disabilities; establishing three new forward-facing branches (Dead Sea hotels area, Bnei Zion Hospital, Haifa and Bat Yam); bolstering long-term stock of medical equipment, home-hospitalization configurations, and urgent-care services to expedite the discharge of war wounded and alleviate hospital overload; providing care at the Frenkel Emergency Center free-of-charge for evacuees; and delivering more than NIS 250,000 (about $615,500) worth of critical medicines to threatened areas, at no cost.
“The atrocities of October 7 and subsequent war have painstakingly impacted the entire country, being that it is so small. Now, more than ever, we are rising to our mission of providing individualized and nuanced support to nearly every family in Israel, ensuring that life goes on,” said Moshe Cohen, CEO of Yad Sarah. “The Rehabilitation and Wellness Hotel stands as a beacon of hope during these challenging times, exemplifying the power of unity and compassion within Israel’s community.”
To support the organization’s ongoing efforts and learn more about its initiatives, visit: yadsarah.org.