Letter from CEO & President on Emergency Resilience Fund

Letter from CEO & President on Emergency Resilience Fund

Letter from CEO & President on Emergency Resilience Fund

Letter from our CEO, Lance Davis, and President, Nathan Disenhouse (October 27, 2023):

On October 7, 2023, we watched in horror as Hamas terrorists launched an unprecedented attack on southern Israel. The attacks were so gruesome, it's hard to even comprehend. More than 1,400 Israelis murdered, countless victims tortured, and over 200 kidnapped. The shock, horror and outrage will be felt forever. The words Never Again now have new meaning. 

The attacks hit especially close to home. For decades, JNF Canada has developed relationships with the mayors and municipal councils in this region, known as the Gaza envelope. We have focused on this area of the country as these periphery communities receive less attention and support than bigger metropoles. And they demonstrate the pioneering spirit of the country living on a hostile border. 

We are so proud of the Jewish community across Canada, who have stepped up to help in every way possible. JNF Canada and many other organizations launched emergency campaigns, which have raised tens of millions of dollars to help Israel cope with the immediate relief needs and the long-term trauma that will be felt in the days, months and years ahead. Our community and allies attended huge rallies organized by our colleagues in the Jewish Federation system. Young adults volunteered to create social media campaigns. Individuals postered their communities with flyers about those being held in captivity. Grassroots organizations started letter writing campaigns to elected officials, university presidents and other thought leaders. We gathered in our synagogues and prayed for the State of Israel, the soldiers of the IDF and security forces, and for the safe return of the captives. There has been an incredible outpouring of Jewish unity. One nation with one heart. 

This was not just an attack on Israel. The surge in antisemitism following October 7th is a concern for everyone, Jews and non-Jews alike. The jubilation expressed by anti-Israel protestors is a clear display of Jew-hatred that has permeated Canadian society. The anti-Israel rallies, organized before Israel even responded militarily, were not in protest of Israel, rather they were celebrations of the murder of Jews. Pure unadulterated antisemitism.

JNF Canada established an emergency campaign – the Israel Resilience Fund. We selected this name as there is no people on the face of the earth who are more resilient than Israelis. We know that they will not be broken. During the urgent first days after the attack, JNF Canada flowed funding for immediate needs such as relocation services for residents of the south, renovation of public bomb shelters and direct aid to the regional councils and communities of the south so they can prepare for what comes next. We sent money from our emergency reserves before we collected any funds because Israel needs it now. The Fund will also provide funds for the future needs of the communities in the Gaza Envelope. We cannot even fathom the number of people who will require PTSD therapy and social services so JNF Canada will help build the second phase of a resilience centre in Sderot. There are dozens of other social service infrastructure projects that are needed and JNF Canada will do what its does best – we will build the foundations for Israel’s future. 

Please join us and participate in the Israel Resilience Campaign. Every dollar counts and every dollar for emergency services will be matched. You will have twice the impact through your gift to JNF Canada! If you are not in a position to donate, there are many other ways you can help the people of Israel. Whatever action you take, thank you for standing with Israel. 

Yachad Ni’natzeach - together we will prevail. Am Yisrael Chai! 

Sincerely, 

Nathan Disenhouse, JNF Canada President
Lance Davis, JNF Canada Chief Executive Officer

To donate to the Israel Resilience Fund, please see our emergency campaign here: jnf.ca/resiliencefund

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