The Madison Jewish Community Stands with Israel

When collective action is needed, Jewish Federation is there. Am Yisrael Chai.

How Can You Help?

Donate to the Emergency Campaign to Support Israeli Victims of Terror

In one of the darkest moments of Israel’s history, Jewish Federations of North America launched a campaign to support victims of terror and address the immense levels of trauma caused by this horrific attack. Every local Jewish Federation has been raising funds to collectively provide for the urgent needs of the people, families, and communities impacted. The Jewish Federation of Madison has set a goal to raise $694,000. 100% of the funds raised go directly to the emergency. Please consider a one-time gift.

Where the money from the emergency campaign is going

Jewish Federations have identified the following urgent priority needs requiring our immediate collective assistance:

  • Basic Needs: Food and financial assistance for impacted families, the elderly, and the homebound.
  • Evacuation, Housing, Respite, and Support for Frontline Communities: Including support for communities under fire and for new olim living in absorption centers through evacuations, temporary housing, respite trips, children’s activities, and increased security.
  • Funds for Victims of Terror:  The Jewish Agency for Israel’s Funds for Victims of Terror is a key part of our standing emergency response capacity that provides immediate cash grants to families and individuals who have been impacted by acts of terror and violence, for post-trauma care, etc.
  • Trauma Relief and Psychosocial Care: To support widescale trauma relief and psychosocial support with expanded capabilities through telephone hotlines; providing direct care to first responders, Lone Soldiers, the injured, and families whose relatives were murdered, injured, or abducted; training and support for caregivers and responders including hospital emergency teams and municipal teams.
  • Emergency Medical Services and Healthcare: Medical supplies and equipment for first responders and hospitals in close proximity to the front line.
  • Special Populations: Targeted assistance to vulnerable populations and their caregivers, including the elderly, young children, people living with disabilities, and marginalized populations, such as the Ultra-Orthodox and Bedouin communities.
  • Local Efforts and Volunteers: Israel’s home front has mobilized and funding is needed to enhance capacity and provide operational support to evacuees, special populations, frontline communities, and those responding to the crisis.

Jewish Federation of Madison's support through our Annual Tzedakah Campaign makes it possible for our primary partners, The Jewish Agency for Israel, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), and World ORT to respond immediately when emergencies like this take place. Our emergency fund is directing additional resources for this critical moment.

As of 2/23/24, Jewish Federations have raised over $783M allocated over $375M to a wide range of humanitarian organizations and NGOs providing emergency relief and support in Israel, including The Jewish Agency for Israel, JDC, World ORT, Israel Trauma Coalition, United Hatzalah, Magen David Adom, ZAKA, Chabad, and over a dozen hospitals and medical organizations.
See Latest Allocations & Organizations >

Wear Your #BlueRibbonsforIsrael

#BlueRibbonsforIsrael is a unity campaign in support of the safe return of the hostages taken by Hamas terrorists in Israel launched by Jewish Federations of North America and 50 partner organizations. It symbolizes solidarity with the hostages, their families, and all who care about their safety. Are you wearing your ribbon? To pick one up, join us at upcoming Jewish Federation of Madison events or check with your affiliated local synagogue or Jewish organization.
Learn More about the campaign, become a partner, and order ribbons >

Send A Message of Support to Israelis

Write to Lone Soldiers
Send a personal message of gratitude to an IDF Lone Soldier currently serving in the IDF. You can upload a photo or even a video! All messages are sent directly to Lone Soldiers through The Lone Soldier Project™ of The Israel Forever Foundation. See Details >

Send Messages of Support to Israelis
Jewish Federations of North America and Birthright Israel Foundation are collecting messages of hope, love and encouragement for our brothers and sisters on the frontlines. Now, more than ever, our friends and family in Israel need your support. See Details >

Shmira Project
Get matched with IDF soldiers fighting terrorism, the wounded and Israelis in danger, to pray and do good deeds in their merit.See Details >

Volunteers from Overseas

Seeking Mental Health Professionals to Volunteer in Israel
Second Line was formed in the aftermath of the October 7, 2023 attack on Israel in collaboration with the Israel Ministry of Health and the Israel Trauma Coalition, supported by the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) and Birthright, and is focused on the global recruitment and deployment of mental healthcare professionals to travel to Israel or to volunteer remotely to provide individual and group care to affected individuals, families, and local mental healthcare professionals working on the ground in Israel.
See Details & Apply >

Volunteer in Israel with Taglit Birthright Israel
Two week tracks for 18-40 years old with the Onward Volunteer Program. Volunteering options include taking part in food rescue operations to prevent shortages in the Israeli market or sorting, packing and distributing goods for civil and military personnel.
See Details & Apply >

Leket Israel and HaShomer HaChadash are recruiting volunteers to help in farms and warehouses facing labor shortages.
See Leket Israel Details >
See HaShomer HaChadash Details >

Masa Israel Journey has launched Masa Volunteers, a six-week program offering various opportunities to volunteer in Israel.
See Details & Apply >

Sar-El, The National Project for Volunteers for Israel, runs programs for volunteers on Israel Defense Force bases, focusing on logistical support.
See Details >

Israeli Ex Pat Volunteers
In an exceptional move reflecting the important role volunteers are playing in the current crisis, Israel’s National Insurance Institute (the equivalent of America’s Social Security Administration) has announced that it will provide insurance for Israeli ex pat volunteers who wish to volunteer.

At present, there are only very limited opportunities open to foreign volunteers. Jewish Federations’ Israel office is currently working to identify potential placements and will update if there are meaningful ways to contribute for those who wish to come help.

Medical Volunteers

As of now, Israel is not experiencing a shortage of medical professionals due to the conflict. In the event of further strains on the health system, Nefesh B’Nefesh, in partnership with the Ministry of Health, will activate to bring people to Israel. They are actively collecting names of doctors who would be willing to volunteer should the need arise.

Nurses and paramedics from abroad looking to volunteer can visit the Ministry of Health website and submit their information there.

Contact Your Elected Officials

Urge Elected Officials to Stand With Israel
Please urge your elected officials at the federal, state, and local level to speak out and make a clear and unequivocal statement in support for our ally Israel and its right to defend itself. You can also sign this action alert to thank your elected officials for their support.  
See Details & Take Action >

Jews of Color Take Action: Support Jewish Communal Security in the Supplemental Budget
Please urge your federal elected officials to take action to support Jews of Color in the U.S. and Israel by passing the Supplemental Budget Request and supporting $14.3 Billion in Emergency Assistance to Israel, Increased Funding for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP), and $61.4 Billion in Emergency Assistance to Ukraine.
See Details & Take Action >

Lend Your Home In Israel

My Home Is Your Home
The World Zionist Organization (WZO) has launched a campaign whereby non-Israelis who own homes in Israel can allow those properties to be used by victims who have lost their residences, as well as families evacuated from the south. The WZO will take responsibility to ensure that the properties are returned to their owners in the condition in which they were given.
See Details & Register >

March for Israel in Washington, D.C. Recap

Date: Tuesday, November 14, 2023
Location: National Mall
Over 290,000 people attended and 250,000 watched online, making this event the largest Jewish gathering in US history.
See Recap & Livestream Recording >

Resources for Support

Resources for Kids and Families

As parents, educators, and caregivers, we are all still processing the horrific attack on Israel ourselves, yet we also need to be present for our children so that we can answer the questions they’re likely to have about the ongoing tragedy. Below are a few resources from experts to support anyone having these challenging conversations with kids and help advise us on having meaningful, age-appropriate discussions around this awful situation.

Kveller
How to Talk to Kids About What's Happening in Israel Right Now

The Jewish Education Project
How to Talk to Children About Israel Today (recorded webinar)

Talking to Teens About Operation Iron Swords (recorded webinar)

Resource Hub for Teaching About Israel In Crisis

Unpacked For Educators
Unpacking the war with your students: Helping your students process what's going on in Israel

Resource Hub for Unpacking Israel At War and Hamas and Gaza

PJ Library
About the Map of Israel

How to Talk to Your Kids About Scary Situations

How to Talk to Children About Antisemitism

Mental Health Professionals
Jenna Shapiro, Ph.D.,  Pediatric Psychologist, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
How to Support Children with Israel and Operation Swords of Iron

BeWell
Support and tools to respond to the growing mental health concerns of young people aged 12 to 26, and resources for parents, caregivers, and Jewish professionals.

Social Media Safety (10/11/23)
It is currently recommended that children's access to any social media content with video or short form video be restricted for the time being. As we're sure many of you have also experienced the last few days, social media feeds are being saturated with reposts and live videos taken by terrorists committing heinous acts against women, children, and civilians. There is a real risk that you or your children may unintentionally see something that could be harmful to your psychological well-being. Please take care.

CNBC | October 12, 2023
Israeli and Jewish schools reportedly urge parents to tell their kids to delete Instagram and TikTok to avoid disturbing images of hostages

Get Support

Support for Community Members
If you would like a space to process please contact Jewish Social Services (JSS), (608) 442-4081 or info@jssmadison.org and someone will get back to you.

Support on Campus
Students on the UW-Madison campus in need of support can contact UW Hillel at (608) 256-8361, info@uwhillel.org or visit UW Hillel resource webpage or contact Chabad at UW at (608) 257-1757 or email.

Connecting with Relatives in Israel
If you need assistance locating or connecting with relatives in Israel, please contact Jewish Federation of Madison's executive director Alan Klugman at (608) 442-4070 or executivedirector@jewishmadison.org or office manager Kaite Batina at (608) 442-4061 or kaite@jewishmadison.org.

Stay Informed

On October 7, 2023, during the holidays of Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah, Hamas terrorists launched an unprecedented attack on Israel from Gaza, firing thousands of rockets, breaching the country’s borders, infiltrating Israeli communities, killing and wounding Israelis, and taking civilians hostage. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened the cabinet to declare that Israel was at war to defend itself.

Updates: Webinars, News, Info Sources

Updates on the War in Israel, Mondays, 7 PM, Zoom
Jewish Federation of Madison executive director, Alan Klugman, will share an update with our Madison community on Zoom, providing the latest information from briefings with Jewish Federations of North America leadership earlier in the day.
To Register >

Jewish People Policy Institute (JPPI) Analysis, Sunday-Thursday, 10 AM, Zoom
The Jewish People Policy Institute (JPPI) is providing daily in-depth and inside analysis, sponsored by Jewish Federations and the Jewish Agency. A rotating team of top analysts of Israeli military affairs, the US-Israel relationship, Israel’s political system and the country’s diverse society. Join here.

News Sources
CNN
Times of Israel

Information Sources
The 10/7 Project is led by the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), ADL (the Anti-Defamation League), the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. The 10/7 Project is designed to promote continued U.S. bipartisan support for Israel by working to ensure more complete and accurate information about the Israel-Hamas war in real time for policymakers and the American public.
Subscribe to the daily newsletter >

INSS (The Institute for National Security Studies)
The Data Analytics Desk at the INSS provides accurate and updated data during the Swords of Iron War, covering information on the Israeli internal front, the Gazan and Northern fronts, the West Bank, and the international arena.

The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center: Details about the home front and military operations  in The Iron Swords War in the south of Israel.

Unpacked for Educators:  Understanding the present depends on a deep understanding of the past. Videos, podcast, and articles for unpacking the War in Israel, Hamas and Gaza, and more.

Message of Support from Local, State & National Leaders

University of Wisconsin-Madison News | October 11, 2023
A message from Chancellor Mnookin on the tragic events in Israel and the Palestinian Territories

The Wisconsin State Assembly voted 95-0 on October 12 to pass Assembly Joint Resolution 82, condemning Hamas' barbaric attack against Israel. 

The Senate voted 32-0 on October 17 to pass Assembly Joint Resolution 82, condemning Hamas’ attack on Israel.

Unity in Crisis: Emergency Leadership Mission for Israel | October 17, 2023
Leaders from across the Jewish community gathered to advocate with and hear from Congressional and Administration leadership. Speakers included Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, as well as a survivor of the massacre at the Nova Music Festival. Watch Video >

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