Customary of Jewish tradition, holidays in Israel are often accompanied by what is known as tzedakah, a central component of Jewish life and the Hebrew word for "charity." During the Passover season, food, matzah, and other holiday items are traditionally given to the poor and needy. In commemoration of the holiday, the Jerusalem Institute of Justice endeavors to help meet the needs of Israeli society by holding their annual Passover distribution to unprivileged communities throughout the nation.
Annual Passover Distribution Reaches Thousands
This year, JIJ facilitated three main distributions in the Jerusalem area, reaching approximately 3000 people in need. Last week, just prior to the first day of Passover, JIJ staff along with hundreds of volunteers gathered to prepare for the distribution. IDF soldiers, students, youth groups, and representatives from an association of Holocaust Survivors joined together to assist in preparing packages of food for the distribution. Carts filled with fruits and vegetables along with food vouchers were given to disadvantaged families, Holocaust Survivors, and Russian and Ethiopian immigrants.
Several public officials, including, Benny Kashriel, the mayor of Maaleh Adumim, and Halali Admasu, advisor of Ethiopian affairs to the Prime Minister, were among those in attendance. Both Mayor Kashriel and Admasu thanked JIJ and its supporters for the overwhelming generosity.
Grand Opening of Holocaust Survivor Community Center
In addition to its regular annual Passover initiatives, JIJ is also proud to announce the grand opening of a new community center for Holocaust Survivors in the Jerusalem area. In collaboration with the Association of Concentration Camps and Ghetto Survivors in Israel, JIJ financed and managed the renovation of an old bomb shelter, which now during times of peace doubles as a brand new community center replete with a new kitchen, floors, plumbing, bathrooms, and computer and entertainment rooms.
Leading up to Passover, JIJ held an elaborate dedication ceremony for the unveiling of the center, which also included a small distribution of fruits and vegetables to the Holocaust Survivors in attendance. The ceremony was also attended by students, Knesset members, and other public officials, including MK Marina Solodkin, one of the foremost advocates for immigrant rights. Upon the center’s unveiling, many Holocaust Survivors were moved to tears at its sight. Prior to the center’s opening, there was really no suitable place for Holocaust Survivors to gather and meet in the Jerusalem area, which only served to reinforce the sense of neglect and disregard they so often feel from the Israeli government and society. As a result, JIJ works regularly with the Holocaust Survivor association in Jerusalem to adequately care for this population.
Beyond meeting the needs of Holocaust Survivors in this capacity, JIJ is also taking an active role in advocating and lobbying for further rights. Currently, government reparations do not apply to Holocaust Survivors that arrived to Israel after 1953, which excludes thousands from monthly government assistance. JIJ is currently working to reform the law.
We would like to sincerely thank you for contributing to these initiatives and for helping us to touch vulnerable sectors of Israeli society during this Passover season. JIJ is committed to advancing social justice and upholding the underprivileged in the ongoing struggle for justice within Israel. We encourage you to continue partnering with us!
JIJ's annual Passover distribution reaches nearly 3000 people in need
IDF soldiers were among those who volunteered with JIJ in preparing packages of food for the distribution
Food was distributed to disadvantaged families, including Russian and Ethiopian immigrants
JIJ hosts a dedication ceremony for the unveiling of the new community center for Holocaust Survivors
The event also included a small food distribution to the Holocaust Survivors in attendance