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Momentum mothers march in Israel in solidarity with hostages’ families

The 80 mothers were part of Momentum's Unity Trip to show support for the country.

Israelis attend a rally calling for the release of the 240 hostages held kidnapped by Hamas terrorists in Gaza outside the home of Israeli minister of Justice Yariv Levin, in Modi'in, Nov. 9, 2023. Photo by Jonathan Shaul/Flash90.
Israelis attend a rally calling for the release of the 240 hostages held kidnapped by Hamas terrorists in Gaza outside the home of Israeli minister of Justice Yariv Levin, in Modi'in, Nov. 9, 2023. Photo by Jonathan Shaul/Flash90.

Hundreds of Israelis marched through the streets of Modi’in near Jerusalem on Thursday calling for the immediate release of hostages who have been in Hamas captivity since the terrorist group’s brutal Oct. 7 attack on Israeli communities.

“There will be no victory until every hostage is saved!” an eight-year-old girl chanted through a megaphone. Marching beside her were participants of Momentum, a global movement which encourages Jewish women to connect with Israel and Jewish values. The organization brought over 80 Jewish mothers to show solidarity with Israel during its darkest hour.

The “Mother to Mother Unity Trip,” organized in partnership with the Israeli Ministry of Diaspora Affairs and Combating Antisemitism, kicked off last week, bringing to Israel Jewish mothers from the United States, United Kingdom, South Africa, Australia and Mexico. For 20 of the women, coming to Israel had extra personal significance as their children are currently serving as lone soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces.

The trip, which centered heavily around acts of volunteering, such as cooking with Israeli mothers for soldiers and harvesting crops to assist farmers called up for reserve duty and whose farm hands have left the country.

On Thursday, the women were visibly moved by a report from Hagit, a cousin of the Tal family, whose members were kidnapped from Kibbutz Nir Oz on Oct. 7. Hagit has been advocating for the Tal household ever since, as the rest of the family is too grief-stricken to leave the house.

Momentum participant Linda Norton, from Sarasota, Fla., spoke on behalf of the group and said, “We’re here to tell you that we love you and we want to do whatever we can to support you and to bring your loved ones home.”

Momentum Founding Director Lori Palatnik pledged: “At Momentum, we couldn’t stand idly by while our Israeli sisters are in so much pain. As a result, we’ve mobilized our dedicated community of Momentum mothers who have chosen to show up for Israel and its women and demonstrate their unwavering support of Israel in an emotional display of unity.”

The trip is one aspect of the organization’s comprehensive Momentum Mobilizes Campaign. The multi-pronged initiative was spearheaded in the early days of the Gaza war to create a connection to what’s happening in Israel and deliver support through educational initiatives.

Momentum is carrying out this campaign by tapping into its extensive community of alumni that spans more than 23,000 women from 34 countries, who through their immersive experience in Israel have returned to their home countries to be dedicated ambassadors for not only the country but Jewish values.

That work of the Momentum community is not limited to activism in Israel. Last week, some 700 momentum participants attended the March for Israel rally in Washington, D.C.

Additionally, Momentum’s Hugs4Heroes campaign encourages Momentum women and their families to strengthen the IDF and the country by showing solidarity with soldiers and displaced families by sending and delivering letters and pictures of support.

Originally published by Israel Hayom.

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