Rescuer recalls Haiti aid work at MDA dinner

By Jonathan Kalmus, June 30, 2011
Robert Peston

Robert Peston

Disaster management was the theme of Magen David Adom's Manchester dinner which featured the MDA director who took Israeli medical teams into the Haiti earthquake aftermath and BBC business editor Robert Peston who warned of impending global financial calamity.

The fundraising dinner for Israel's ambulance and humanitarian agency attracted 150 fewer supporters than last year but there were still more than 200 people at the Manchester airport Raddisson Blu Hotel.

Mr Peston told guests that governments had tackled only the the symptoms of global recession rather than the cause and said he was "deeply worried about the prospects of the economy" adding, "but what I have said will make you all feel deeply generous about your contributions tonight."

MDA's disaster management co-ordinator, Chaim Rafalowski, gave a graphic visual presentation of the first days of his operation in the earthquake-stricken Haitian capital. He also highlighted MDA's current work to provide one of the only rehabilitation clinics for those left disabled by the disaster.

MDA UK chairman Stuart Glyn appealed for diners to simply "do what you can do" for Israel's emergency rescue service which gets little Israeli government support.

Manchester MDA's Richard Simon said funds raised would "take us further along to our major project to fund the new Hadera ambulance station in northern Israel."

Last updated: 3:13pm, June 30 2011