In the wake of the Oct. 7 terror attacks in Israel and the heightened realization of a direct threat of other infiltrations to communities across the country, the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews has allocated more than $3.2 million to local emergency-response units.
The money will be used to purchase life-saving and personal protective equipment, including flak jackets, helmets, first-responder kits, as well as protected vehicles for border communities like Ashkelon and Sderot.
It was made possible through the generosity of thousands of Christian friends of Israel around the world. The funding allows for immediate support to be delivered to the communities most affected by war—primarily, those in the northern and southern regions of Israel. IFCJ representatives are in regular touch with the IDF Homefront Command and other first-response organizations to ensure that the fastest possible response reaches areas that are most in need of support and funding.
To date, the monies raised have allowed for the purchase of 4,820 protective vests (flak jackets), 2,900 helmets and 500 first-responder medical kits that have been distributed to hundreds of emergency-response units protecting local communities. The distribution started almost immediately after the outbreak of the war and is expected to continue in the coming weeks with the goal of identifying all relevant needs and better understanding which communities face the most immediate threats.
Included was the delivery of a protected vehicle to Ashkelon so that response teams can work amid threats from rocket fire. Additional vehicles will be delivered to Sderot, and more are planned for delivery in the weeks and months ahead, coming on top of four other similar protected vehicles donated by IFCJ in recent years and used by local security teams in the Gaza border areas.
These vehicles were instrumental in supporting the immediate life-saving responses on Oct. 7 and throughout the war.
The allocations are part of roughly 80 million shekels ($20.7 million) of support from the IFCJ since the beginning of the war, designated for border communities in the north and south of Israel. Since the earliest hours of the war, IFCJ representatives were in touch with local community heads, the IDF, hospital directors and many other key figures on the homefront to determine needs and respond accordingly.
“For 40 years, the IFCJ has been driven and honored to provide assistance and support to Israel and the Jewish people when and where they need it most, and now is certainly no exception,” said Yael Eckstein, president of the IFCJ. “The commitment of millions of Christians and Jews around the world who stand side by side with Israel and are doing everything they can to help keep the people of Israel safe is an inspiration to us all.”