Israel is in the midst of some very difficult times. As it has done across the globe, the novel coronavirus pandemic has disrupted life in Israel in big ways. Gatherings of more than ten people are forbidden. All non-essential businesses like restaurants, theaters and malls (except for supermarkets and pharmacies) have been closed, and many offices are closed as well.
Tourism, a critical part of the Israeli economy—4.5 million tourists visited Israel last year, contributing over $6 billion to the economy—is virtually non-existent as Israel has closed its borders to incoming international travel.
We have been hearing from our friends in Judea and Samaria, and this is hitting them very hard. For Akiva at Off the Wall in Jerusalem, it has meant no visitors to his shop, and he has had to close his doors. For Shlomo Keshet and others, it means that their usual customers in Israel aren’t putting in orders anymore, and events that they attend to sell their products have been cancelled. We just spoke to Batya, who makes our ceramics, and she has had 7 tour groups cancel their visits to her shop.
In many respects, we remain the only avenue through which their products are being sold. All this means that you have a greater opportunity to be a support to these families of Judea and Samaria.Our goal in this time is to sell as many products as we can to provide as much assistance to the pioneers of the heartland as we can. We’re offering a discount of 18% store-wide. The number 18 in Hebrew represents life, and it is during these hard times especially that we want to stand for life and ensure that the restoration of Israel goes on. We want to move as much product as possible so we can place another ordervery soon.
In the next few weeks we will be streaming live videos of us talking to our suppliers in Israel to give you a firsthand look at what life is like there right now. Follow us on Facebook and YouTube to see the videos as they are released.