Support Our Community Campaign and the Hostages - November 3, 2023

Support Our Community Campaign

and the Hostages


In just 25 days, our Jewish community raised close to $1.9 million to support the people of Israel. Our community responded immediately!


I am asking you to do the same for our 2024 Campaign for Community Needs. Our focus has been, rightly so, on Israel. Now we need you to respond as positively and quickly to support our annual campaign. Typically, October and November is when we raise 85% of our fundraising goal. It is the “support engine” for our local Jewish community!


Our annual campaign makes it possible for the Jewish Federation and community to respond to world events like the attacks on October 7. Our Jewish communal infrastructure – locally and in Israel – was already in place and ready to go. Through your gift to the annual campaign, you ensure that every day we are prepared for tomorrow.


Many of you reading this are long-time supporters of the Jewish Federation. Thank you! Some of you may not be. I hope you will click below and either make a pledge (payable by December 2024) or make a donation right now to support our annual campaign and the daily work of our Jewish community.


Please give generously!



In regard to Israel, much is happening that you can be involved in and learn more about:


  • While we watch a tremendous amount of news about the war – we must not forget the hostages (here is a local personal story from KGW). They have been held for almost 30 days. The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland is launching a letter writing/art/photo campaign to share love and support for families of the hostages currently in Gaza. The letters are not family specific – however, they will be shared in total with all the families. Click this link to share your warm thoughts and upload your drawings and photos.


  • This week’s Jewish Review (page 1) highlights the Jewish Federation’s Israel emergency fund and fund allocations. As of this morning (after the article was written), we have raised over $1,875,000 with $1,718,000 already sent to Israel. Once the remaining pledges are paid we will forward 100% of those funds as quickly as possible.


  • In total, the Jewish Federations of North America have raised over $554 million for Israel. Click here to learn more about the continental fundraising effort and where allocations have been made.


  • My colleague, Gil Preuss, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington (DC area), was recently in Israel and shared this short video. You can see the incredible work our partners are doing on the ground and how much our support makes a difference.


  • Earlier this week I wrote about the challenges Jewish students are facing on college campuses. A local rabbi wrote, “Amidst the concerns that we’ve all shared, I had a similar feeling, that something profound was coming undone, when I read that the Jewish students at Cornell were advised to avoid the Cornell Jewish center. It wasn’t so long ago that we were fighting to build Jewish centers on campus. Now our children can’t go to them."


  • Here is an excellent article from Natan Sharansky sharing his experiences of what is happening on American campuses today and what we can do about it.


  • The State of Israel has evacuated people from the Gaza area and parts of the north and relocated them to hotels. This is an expensive proposition and unsuitable for most families. The World Zionist Organization (WZO) and local municipalities have created a new program, My home is your home.” They are looking for furnished Israeli apartments that can be used for a minimum of three months. The WZO will take full responsibility and guarantee your home will be in the state it was given. If you own a place in Israel, or know someone who does, consider registering for this initiative


  • Herb Keinon, longtime Senior Contributing Editor for The Jerusalem Post, will now do a virtual talk with the Portland Jewish community on Monday, November 6 at 7:30 p.m. He will be speaking on, “Israel at War. Where Does the Jewish State Go from Here? Register here.


  • Join our community for United in Song: A Concert for Israel on Wednesday, November 8 at 7:30 p.m. at Congregation Neveh Shalom. Joining Cantor Eyal Bitton will be a community of voices including Cantor Ida Rae Cahana, Cantor Rayna Green, Kim Schneiderman, Michèle Tredger, Linoy Yechieli, and others for a special concert to bring us closer together and to show our love and support for the State of Israel. Register for the concert here.


  • Let’s BAKE the world a better place. Congregation Neveh Shalom and the Jewish Federation are sponsoring a community bake sale for Israel relief efforts. Click here to sign up to bake or to volunteer. Most of all, come to Congregation Neveh Shalom on Sunday, November 12 from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. and buy sweet treats to support Israel. In addition, Jewish bakers can gather together to bake and package goods on Friday, November 10 from 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Click here to register and to get the address.


And do not miss these excellent community events:


  • Juju Chang, Emmy Award-winning co-anchor of “ABC News Nightline,” will be the speaker for this year’s Women’s Philanthropy IMPACT Event on Thursday, November 16 at the Mittleman Jewish Community Center. It will be an evening of gathering, solidarity, and of great interest. Register now.


  • Fran Drescher, star of The Nanny and President of SAG/AFTRA, will speak at our Spotlight Event on Saturday, December 2 at The Patricia Reser Center for the Arts. Our community can come together to lift each other up and support our Jewish community. Pick your seats here.


  • Watch a recent national concert, Unity in Harmony - Standing in Solidarity, Song, and Prayer for Israel. Witness the profound sense of connection, solidarity and healing. The concert was presented by Judaism Alive, and features: David Broza, Rabbi Josh Warshawsky, Nefesh Mountain, Rick Recht, Chava Mirel, Hadar and Sheldon, Cantor Laurie Akers, Cantor Rachel Brook, Eric Hunker, Shimon Smith, Lisa Friedman, Jeremy Fingerman, Julie Platt, Winnie Sandler Grinspoon, Rabbi David Ingber, and Cantor Rosalie Will.


Shabbat shalom.


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