This holiday season the Federation of Jewish Communities (FJC) is running a campaign to save Ukrainian Jewish families, among them thousands of children, suffering from humanitarian crisis in the region. Called “Just One Gift” the campaign turns to those interested in the lives of FSU communities to donate the value of just one holiday gift towards helping specific people.
“Every donation that comes in brings tears to my eyes. We personally know how difficult life is for so many Jewish children, families and elders across Ukraine and the former Soviet Union. Leaving them out in the dark just because there is not enough financing to go around is heart-breaking,” said Daniel Gordon, FJC’s resource development and campaign’s coordinator.
“Thus we are so grateful to people from across the globe, who follow us and support our work, making the real and significant change in the lives of these Jewish families.”
The situation in Ukraine continues to deteriorate, as no solution has yet been found to its political and economic distress, while the war-torn regions of Eastern Ukraine drown in dishevelment and uncertainty. Thousands are refugees lost all their belongings and a roof over their heads, while many more ordinary citizens struggle to make ends meet every day.
“My pension barely covers the medications I need to buy monthly,” says Batya, a 79-year old Mariupol resident, when she comes to a Chanukah event organized by the FJC city community for its elderly residents. “If it wasn’t for your help, I wouldn’t survive.”
FJC has been active in humanitarian aid relief in the region year after year since 1991. It distributes thousands of food parcels every month providing much needed sustenance. One of its most awaited projects are the clothing parcels, which give needy Jewish youngsters the opportunity to get warm and stylish clothing.
Since the war broke out in Ukraine in 2014, the federation organized shelters for the thousands of refugees, which continue to operate today, distributing food and clothing, and providing a temporary home when needed. Jewish communities apply all possible means to support those in dire need, especially the weakest and the most vulnerable – the children, the elderly, the single mothers among the rest. “This holiday season, when we are happy giving gifts to our friends and family, may we put the value of just one gift aside and dedicate it to those who really need our help, the Jewish families in Ukraine,” said Gordon.