Thanks to your support of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, infrastructure was in place to protect and care for 200,000 at-risk Jews in Ukraine at the very beginning of this crisis.
Our primary partners on the ground have swiftly shifted into emergency mode and are working around the clock to provide uninterrupted humanitarian aid to Jews in need and standing at the ready to respond as new needs emerge.
An inspiring story of a mother being reunited with her family in Hungary shows the immense importance of those agencies and all they are doing to help those in crisis.
Masha, a Jewish mother from Ukraine, was stranded in Budapest at the end of a Jewish Agency leadership conference. Masha’s husband, Dima and six year-old son, Alon, drove four days straight, amidst bombs and fires, all the way from near Odessa to Hungary. After four anguishing days, Masha was finally reunited with her family.
Watch the emotional moment Masha reunites with her son in Hungary →
The Jewish Agency for Israel Ukraine Update
Below please find updates from The Jewish Agency for Israel as of March 3, 2022 regarding its emergency operations along the Ukrainian border:
- The Jewish Agency raised more than $15 million over the course of one week to support humanitarian and rescue operations along the Ukrainian border, with over $10 million coming from its partners at the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) and Keren Hayesod. The needs of this operation stand at over $21 million and are expected to grow as the situation evolves.
- The Jewish Agency has ongoing humanitarian and rescue operations in four countries neighboring Ukraine: Poland, Moldova, Romania and Hungary.
- 700 Jews have so far arrived at Aliyah (immigration to Israel) processing centers run by The Jewish Agency and the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) that are located in countries bordering Ukraine. The future olim (immigrants) are escorted from the border to temporary housing facilities where they receive their visas to Israel. Then, they will be flown to Israel, where they will stay in hotels across the country for about a month, coordinated by the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration. Afterwards, the immigrants will be transferred to their permanent residences, located in communities throughout Israel.
- The first three flights carrying a total of 200 olim, along with an additional 100 orphans, will arrive in Israel on Sunday, March 6.
- Hundreds of Jewish and Christian volunteers have enlisted to assist these refugees, including transporting them to The Jewish Agency and IFCJ Aliyah centers.
- 3,380 beds were rented in hotels and other facilities in neighboring countries along the border to accommodate the thousands of Jews seeking to make Aliyah. Meanwhile, The Jewish Agency is also involved in working alongside local organizations to find additional lodging for these refugees.
- 10,000 calls were received at the special hotline established together with the IFCJ, 5,000 of which were from Jews seeking to make Aliyah as soon as possible. Other calls came from concerned relatives in Israel, seeking guidance on how they could help their loved ones in Ukraine. Call centers also inform refugees within Ukraine on how they can receive rescue services from The Jewish Agency, IFCJ and other local organizations.
- 40 volunteers staff these call centers, which are operated with the support of the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration. Most of those volunteers have either immigrated to Ukraine or have family and friends in the country, and they have mobilized to help the refugees.
- 150 community organizations across Ukraine identified by The Jewish Agency’s Security Assistance Fund will receive immediate assistance for protection. This budget will be used to implement security measures at Jewish organizations and institutions across the country.