Ariely Brings Israel Realities to Baltimore

August 28, 2014
BY Marc Shapiro

Baltimore-Ashkelon Partnership director Sigal Ariely spoke at Beth Tfiloh Congregation Monday night about what it’s like to live in Israel during the recent upheaval.

“You read about it, you see the pictures on the news, but it just doesn’t compare when you hear firsthand how one person, one community or one family is affected on a daily basis,” Ellen Ginsberg Simon, vice chair of the Baltimore Israel Coalition, said of the program.

Ariely spoke about her family, what life is like in the Ashkelon community and about the shelters. A slide show accompanying her presentation further illustrated life during wartime.

As a mother, Ginsberg Simon said the emotionally charged account hit home with her when Ariely spoke about her son, who is training for the military, and her scared daughter sleeping under the staircase.

“What do I worry about? I worry about if my daughter takes a nap or my son eats right,” Ginsberg Simon said. “I don’t worry about survival.”

The talk, the first in a series of four being put on by the coalition concerning the current conflict, was a way to educate the community on how the war affects people that Baltimore supports emotionally and financially, Ginsberg Simon said. “It is important to get these personal stories out there, and you can spread these anecdotes to people who aren’t attending these events and remind people that there are two sides.”

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