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Jewish Agency convenes Israel’s largest gathering of global communal leaders since Oct. 7

Some 200 participants at the Jewish Agency for Israel’s board of governors meeting will discuss plans for the rehabilitation of Gaza border communities.

Mark Wilf, chair of the Jewish Agency's board of governors, presides over their opening plenary on Sunday in Jerusalem. Photo by Guy Yechiely.
Mark Wilf, chair of the Jewish Agency's board of governors, presides over their opening plenary on Sunday in Jerusalem. Photo by Guy Yechiely.

The Jewish Agency for Israel’s board of governors is meeting in Jerusalem from Feb. 25-27 with about 200 Jewish community leaders from around the world, participating in the largest such gathering since the Hamas terrorist attacks in southern Israel on Oct. 7. The meeting is chaired by the Jewish Agency chairman of the executive, Maj. Gen. (res.) Doron Almog, chairman of the board of governors Mark Wilf and organization’s CEO Amira Ahronoviz.

The leaders are showing their solidarity with Israel at this difficult time, discussing the Jewish Agency’s plans for the rehabilitation of the Gaza border communities that were decimated on Oct. 7, as well as those along the northern border.

Members of the Jewish Agency board of governors will visit Gaza border communities, including Kibbutz Beeri, Nir Oz and Kfar Gaza as well as the towns of Sderot, Ofakim and Ashkelon. They will witness the horrors of the massacre and hear firsthand testimonies from survivors so that they can more effectively influence global public opinion upon their return home. They will also meet with the heads of the municipalities and local authorities to learn about the immediate and long-term needs of the rehabilitation process.

IDF Spokesperson Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari will appear before the board of governors in conversation with Almog, former head of the Southern Command. The board members will also meet the deputy head of the Tekuma Authority, Maj. Gen. (res.) Yaakov Ayish, to learn about the needs of the restoration. In addition, a meeting will be held with Minister of Aliyah and Integration Ofir Sofer to discuss growing interest in aliyah.

The board of governors will give special recognition to the team operating the Jewish Agency’s Fund for the Victims of Terror. Since Oct. 7, the women of the fund, led by chairwoman Ayelet Nachmias Verbin, have assisted more than 8,000 families whose loved ones were murdered, kidnapped or injured by Hamas attacks in the south and Hezbollah fire in the north.

The board of governors will also review major projects launched by the Jewish Agency in response to the war, as well as to assist in the rehabilitation of communities in the Western Negev, including the Communities2Gether initiative which stems from the Jewish Agency’s traditional role as the main organization forging connections between global Jewry and Israel during both routine and emergency situations. Alongside long-existing partnerships, Communities2Gether will work to establish new partnerships between Jewish communities around the world with communities in the Western Negev for a total of 30 partnerships with the aim of leaving no community behind. The aim is for this to be a long-term partnership model that will help rebuild these Israeli communities, restore hope and lead them towards a prosperous future.

Further, the board of governors will stand alongside those Jewish Agency employees who have made the ultimate sacrifice—those whose family members were murdered by terrorists or fell in defense of the country and those whose family members are still held hostage by Hamas.

Almog, the Jewish Agency’s chairman of the executive, said: “This week’s board of governors meeting is an expression of the unconditional love global Jewish communities have for the State of Israel. Their arrival at this difficult time is a moving show of solidarity. Since Oct. 7 the Jews worldwide have been supporting, donating and bearing the horrific pain together with us. The Jewish communities’ unprecedented mobilization in support of Israel is an important pillar in our restoration and in strengthening the resilience of the only Jewish state in the world, and Israeli society as a whole. Their hugs and support are a bright spot for us in these difficult and painful days. I thank them from the bottom of my heart.”

Since the outbreak of the war, global Jewish communities have been mobilizing in unprecedented fashion in support of Israel—at rallies around the world, in fundraising campaigns, in the fight for global public opinion, in advocating for the release of the hostages, and arriving in Israel as volunteers and new immigrants. 

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