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Jewish Federations of North America fundraising since Oct. 7 passes $700m

JFNA president and CEO Eric Fingerhut said he is optimistic following the “March for Israel” rally in Washington that drew nearly 300,000 people.

Eric Fingerhut (left), president and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America, and William Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations in front of an audience of about 300,000 at the “March for Israel” rally in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 14, 2023. Credit: Laurence Levin/JFNA.
Eric Fingerhut (left), president and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America, and William Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations in front of an audience of about 300,000 at the “March for Israel” rally in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 14, 2023. Credit: Laurence Levin/JFNA.

The Jewish Federation of North America announced recently that its post-Oct. 7 fundraising has surpassed $700 million.

The $242 million that it has allocated—of the $711.5 million raised—is going to about 300 partnering organizations, including Jewish Agency for Israel, United Hatzalah, Magen David Adom, ZAKA and Chabad, the Federations stated.

Its areas of focus include food security, support for Bedouin Israelis and people with disabilities, and rabbinic services and pastoral guidance.

Eric Fingerhut, president and CEO of JFNA, delivered a talk about “the power of community to do good” at Cleveland’s City Club on Dec. 8.

“I learned about the power of community growing up in this great city,” Fingerhut said, per a copy of his remarks that Federations provided. “I learned it by watching business leaders and religious leaders and political leaders reach out beyond their specific constituencies to build partnerships and coalitions on a wide range of issues.”

He also spoke about college campuses, which he called “perhaps the most troubling sector of our society seeing the dramatic rise in antisemitism,” and the war that Israel is waging against Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip.

Eric Fingerhut
Eric Fingerhut, president and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America, at the “March for Israel” rally in Washington, D.C., which drew about 300,000 on Nov. 14, 2023. Credit: Laurence Levin/JFNA.

“It does not take military expertise … to understand that this war could be over already if Israel was not taking extraordinary measures to protect the lives of innocent civilians,” he said. “Israel has the capability to level the centers of Hamas’s terrorist infrastructure with bombs and drones, including the hospitals, schools and refugee camps that Hamas uses as its bases of operation.”

“It could do so without ever putting a single Israeli soldier at risk in hand-to-hand combat,” he added. “The fact that Israel instead does put its soldiers at risk, and has lost so many, is all the evidence to the contrary that we need.”

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