Two Ways to Give
The estimated 300,000 Jewish residents in Kiev and throughout Ukraine have been profoundly affected by the violence and political and economic instability that have wracked the country since January. Though the election of new president Petro Poroshenko, widely supported by Ukraine's Jews, inspires hope for a more secure future, 17,000 Jews in Crimea remain concerned about Russia's ongoing territorial occupation of the peninsula. Many more are worried by militant pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine and deepening divisions within the country.
In a special teleconference with Federation leaders, Ira Forman, U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor & Combat Anti-Semitism, stressed the need to remain vigilant to any sign of rising nationalism in Ukraine and across Europe, which could result in increased anti-Semitic acts, to targeted Russian propaganda campaigns that seek to stir up an exaggerated fear of rising anti-Semitism and extremism in Ukraine for political purposes.
Federation partner agencies JDC, the Jewish Agency for Israel and World ORT, as well as NCSJ, have been working tirelessly to ensure the safety of Jewish communities and their institutions, and continue their much-needed work. On conference calls on March 3 (summary and recording here) and May 7, they confirmed that, contrary to reports, most Jews are not considering a mass exodus from Ukraine--which makes their on-the-grond work even more important.
Here's what our partner agencies are doing:
Jewish Federations are committed to working with our partners at home and abroad throughout this crisis. Sustained financial support from Federations enables our partners to continue funding much-needed programming and develop new initiatives to meet immediate needs, especially amid Ukrainian economic stagnation and severe inflation. We are continuing to collect donations to our overseas partners through our Ukraine mailbox. Donate now!
Ukraine's Jews welcome election results (Haaretz, 5/27/2014)
Lag b'Omer in Odessa (Forward, 5/18/2014)
Odessa Jews lay low (Forward, 5/12/2014)
Kharkiv Jews remain calm (Forward, 5/8/2014)
Odessa Jews have no plans to leave (JTA, 5/7/2014)
Jewish mayor of Kharkiv shot (Tablet, 4/29/2014)
Ukraine's Jews tired of Kiev-Moscow battles (Christian Science Monitor, 4/28/2014)
Demands that Jews register are false (NYTimes, 4/17/2014)
Ukrainian Jews Celebrate Passover Amid Crisis (NPR, 4/14/2014)
Holocaust memorial in Odessa vandalized (Haaretz, 4/10/2014)
Sharp rise in immigration from Ukraine (Haaretz, 4/8/2014)
Among Jews in Ukraine, the Bigger Worry Is Putin, Not Pogroms (NYTimes, 4/8/2014)
The unlikely street-fighting rabbi (Forward, 4/7/2014)
Spotlight on JFNA's involvement in Ukraine (Arutz Sheva, 3/21/2014)
How Federation money from New Jersey is helping Jews in Ukraine (New Jersey Jewish News, 3/19/2014)
Three Jews among those killed in February Kiev protests (Haaretz, 3/18/2014)
Ukraine's Prime Minister vows to protect Jews (Arutz Sheva, 3/17/2014)
On the ground with Moishe House Kiev (eJewish Philanthropy, 3/10/14)
Ukraine Jewish Committee dispels rumors of anti-Semitism (Jerusalem Post, 3/10/14)
Report on the Giymat Rosa Synagogue bombing (JTA, 2/24/14)
Images above are courtesy of JDC, and show the protest barricades, damage to Kiev, and the agency's efforts to reach homebound seniors even during this time of crisis.