(JNS.org) The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) will donate $8.5 million to the Israeli Defense Forces to help families in need and lone soldiers.
“Unfortunately, the poverty rates that have afflicted so many Israelis have affected our soldiers as well,” said Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, president and founder of IFCJ.
“I am pleased that the IDF is acknowledging their need and is partnering with the IFCJ to make sure Israel’s bravest are able to serve in peace, knowing that they and their families are being provided for,” he added.
The package will include NIS 5.5 million ($1.41 million) distributed from IFCJ funds to help soldiers from poor families buy electrical appliances, furniture and other necessities. Additionally, 35,000 combat soldiers in basic training will be able to buy basic necessities with vouchers.
The IFCJ partnered with the IDF Manpower Directorate and the Association for the Wellbeing of Israel's Soldiers, who assist impoverished families.
“[The] IDF is the people’s army and, as such, enlists soldiers from all backgrounds,” said Maj.-Gen. Hagai Topolansky, head of the IDF Manpower Directorate.
“We take young women and men from impoverished backgrounds and turn them into able soldiers. The IFCJ and IDF are here to give a boost to those soldiers who need it. We are very grateful to Rabbi Eckstein for his expanded aid package.”