90-Year-Old Blind Israeli Holocaust Survivor Living in Squalor Gets Refurnished Apartment After News Reports
The decrepit apartment of a 90-year-old blind Israeli Holocaust survivor has been completely remodeled after media reports drew attention to his situation.
A Channel Two report that aired in October on the conditions in which Simeon Belelov was living in the central Israeli city of Lod shocked the public. The report revealed that the floor of his apartment had collapsed, water and sewer pipes had exploded, and it was overrun by rats.
“If I hadn’t broken my hand a few months ago, I would try to repair what happened to the floor myself,” said Simeon. Following the collapse of his floor, Simeon moved in with his ex-wife, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease.
Simeon bemoaned the lack of assistance to both him and other elderly people, saying, “I’m sad that they relate to old people this way. They forget them and nobody cares. I’m not doing this just for myself, but so that others don’t end up in these conditions.”
Following the report, however, a fund called Amigour — that assists Holocaust survivors — and the Housing Ministry gave 100,000 shekels to Simeon to repair his apartment. Dozens of volunteers assisted in the project.
“I thank all the good people who helped me,” Simeon said when he was handed the key to his new apartment. “It’s very touching.”