JNF UK has launched an urgent appeal to support vulnerable individuals in Israel who are struggling due to the impact of the coronavirus.
Israel announced on Sunday that it would implement a second national lockdown – the first country to do so. This is in response to the highest rate of daily new coronavirus infections per capita in the world.
Using the strapline “You can’t socially distance from hunger, illness and poverty,” the appeal is fundraising for JNF UK and its partner organisations who are seeing a dramatic increase in demand for their welfare services following the outbreak of Covid-19.
These services are a lifeline for recipients such as Mina Salomon, a Holocaust survivor who relies on food parcels from SAHI, a JNF partner organisation:
“The nice young people have been bringing me food for over a year and little by little our relationship has developed. I opened the door and wanted to see who was the one who was bringing me food and taking care of me. Today I already know them. They even fix for me things at home, always with a smile and a desire to help. Without them, it would have been very hard for me to get through these past months.”
The appeal will raise funding for a wide range of welfare programmes including soup kitchens and food parcel deliveries, urgent repairs for dilapidated homes, and supporting volunteers helping those with serious medical conditions.
The global pandemic has had a severe impact on the Israeli economy, especially in the underdeveloped peripheral regions. In the early weeks of the outbreak around 7,000 Israelis were registering as unemployed every single hour, crashing the National Employment Service website. The unemployment rate rose from less than 5% in February to over 25% in April – the first time in the country’s history that more than one million citizens were registered unemployed.
Charles Lossos, Interim Chief Executive of JNF UK, commented:
“Every country has been impacted by the coronavirus – and Israel is no different. With the highest infection rate in the world and a new lockdown, there is a real need to support the most vulnerable families there. Any donation to the JNF UK urgent appeal is an invaluable helping hand for them.”
Notes to the editor
Appeal link: www.jnf.co.uk/covid
Israel’s infection rate:
According to the Times of Israel, John Hopkins University reported that Israel had the highest per capita infection rate in the world – averaging 199.3 new cases a day per 1 million residents in the week ending on September 2.
According to the Financial Times Coronavirus Tracker, Israel reached a seven-day rolling average of 262 new cases per million on September 6. This is higher than Brazil (186), the US (120), India (61) and the UK (30).
About JNF UK:
JNF UK is the UK’s oldest Israel charity. It was formally registered as a charity in 1939; its precursor was the Jewish National Fund, which was established in 1901.
JNF UK is committed to building and supporting people living across Israel’s underdeveloped peripheries. From improving education and welfare to boosting employment opportunities, afforestation, healthcare and cultural activities, JNF UK works on projects aimed at improving all areas of life for Israelis of all backgrounds and ages. Website: http://www.jnf.co.uk