February 24 marks one year since the war broke out in Ukraine.
It was not the first time Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ had to put out a call for help. And when we asked our community to support Jews in Ukraine, you responded immediately. When we come together our impact is powerful. With Federations across North America we have raised $85 million and counting – that’s nearly a quarter of a million dollars per day.
The people of Ukraine are still under attack, still struggling, still in need of vital supplies, which means there is still more we need to do. A gift of any size to the UJA Annual Campaign helps us respond immediately to crises around the world and this winter, helps sustain tens of thousands of Ukrainian Jews.
Impact to Date of Jewish Federation and Our Partners
Our partners at JDC Report:
Nearly one year ago today, the Ukraine crisis began. Immediately, Jewish Federations, JDC, and their partners mobilized to deliver humanitarian aid to Jews in Ukraine, and those fleeing to neighboring countries. This was a collective effort and that life-saving work continues today.
A year into the crisis, the Jewish Federations and JDC continue our life-saving care for tens of thousands of Jews in Ukraine, thousands of Jewish refugees remaining in Europe, and also to thousands of non-Jewish Ukrainians.
Over the last year, JDC, with the support of Jewish Federations, has:
- Continued life-saving services (food, medicine, and homecare) for more than 43,000 Jews in Ukraine, including poor, elderly, and newly impoverished Jews.
- Distributed over 800 tons of humanitarian assistance.
- Evacuated over 13,000 Jews from Ukraine, including 170 medical evacuations of frail and sick elderly.
- Provided winter survival aid to tens of thousands of Jews, which included subsidies for heat, as well as wood and coal.
- Aided over 40,000 Ukrainian refugees fleeing to neighboring countries at border crossings, supplying vital necessities such as food, medicine, shelter, and guidance, in partnership with European Jewish communities.
- Fielded over 67,600 calls and requests for help via our emergency hotlines
- Provided nonsectarian medical aid and psychosocial support to 20,000 Ukrainian refugees and support to medical facilities in Ukraine, including the distribution of telemedicine devices, training in their use, and critically needed wheelchairs and crutches.
Our ability to achieve this is based on our vast, preexisting social service and Jewish community infrastructure in Ukraine, professionals and local volunteer corps, and partnerships with local European Jewish communities.
Current & Future Needs
A year into the crisis, Jews from Ukraine need us more than ever. The country is in the midst of a bitter winter, and temperatures frequently drop below freezing. Recent escalations have damaged much of Ukraine’s electricity and heating infrastructure, leaving many without light and warmth. Because of this, Ukraine’s Jewish community is contending with a host of frightening and new winter-related challenges as well as ongoing economic decline.
To meet this dire need, the Jewish Federations, JDC, and their partners are working around the clock to provide winter survival and material support, and other aid to poor and vulnerable Jews. This includes:
Providing 22,000+ people with winter survival needs, including: wood, coal, canned and dehydrated foods, support for covering utilities costs, heaters, warm clothes, blankets, sub-zero sleeping bags, and electric bedding.
With Federation support, JDC Hesed social service centers and JDC-supported community service centers are being converted into warming centers with generators for those who do not have access to heat or electricity. Should power fail, the shelters will offer refuge and community to poor and vulnerable Jews.
Expansion of JOINTECH – JDC’s remote care and online community programs — that has provided life-saving assistance and trauma support during the conflict and pandemic. By putting technology in the hands of JDC clients and caregivers, we have been able to locate and assist Jews in danger, ensure connection to Jewish life and decrease loneliness among the homebound and those in isolated locations.
Resettlement and integration assistance for refugees in Jewish communities in Europe, including: food, medicine, accommodation, trauma support, educational scholarships, camping, and workforce training and integration.
Strengthening Ukrainian hospitals and supporting access to healthcare for non-Jewish populations in Ukraine and refugees remaining in Europe.
The Jewish Federations and JDC’s lifesaving winter survival operations are only possible thanks to the generosity and compassion of donors like you. On behalf of the tens of thousands of Ukrainian Jews whom you are helping keep warm this winter and sustaining throughout the crisis, we thank you.
We’ve Worked in Ukraine for Decades
For generations, Federations have and continue to be the foremost partners to Jews around the world.
Through the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI), we bring Shlichim to Ukraine, run Sunday programs, bring Ukrainian youth to Israel for immersive programs, and support the aliyah of Jews.
Through our partners at the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), we support multiple Hesed centers across 1000 locations, supporting the most vulnerable people of Ukraine. We run JCCs and Jewish youth programs to help younger generations reimagine Jewish life where it once was all but decimated.
And through World ORT, we’ve played an important role in the renewal of Jewish life through Jewish day schools, vocational training, and more.