Crisis in Ukraine


Like many in the Greater Akron community, the Jewish community is saddened and distressed by the events that have become reality in Ukraine and feels a responsibility to step up and help in some way.


There are approximately 200,000 members of Ukraine's Jewish community, including many elderly Holocaust survivors. The community boasts close to 300 Jewish organizations dispersed over some 100 towns and cities. Since the Russian invasion of Crimea in 2014, they have been profoundly affected by political and economic instability, and Jewish Federations together with their partner agencies and organizations like IsraAID have provided ongoing support to this vulnerable population for communal needs, programming, and humanitarian aid - 24 hours a day across over 1,000 locations in the country.


To that end, the Jewish Community Board of Akron (JCBA) has approved an emergency, advance allocation of $50,000 from the 2022 Annual Campaign to address Jewish community and other humanitarian needs in Ukraine. Jewish Akron has joined the Jewish Federations of North America's (JFNA) $20 million emergency campaign to provide humanitarian assistance to vulnerable Jewish populations living in Ukraine. Funds will be allocated through Jewish Federations' overseas partners, The Jewish Agency for Israel, The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and World ORT, to provide critical help where it is needed most and support to protect and safeguard Ukraine's Jewish community as well as Jews in neighboring countries. In addition to the JFNA network, funds are also being transmitted to IsraAID, a non-governmental humanitarian agency based in Israel and operating on the ground in Ukraine.


We are encouraging community members to make new or additional gift to the 2022 annual campaign, which not only addresses a range of local needs, but provides a critical lifeline to help protect and safeguard Jewish communities- including the assistance we can provide to our family in Ukraine. We pray for safety for all, and for a speedy end to the hostilities. 


Emergency Funding will Focus on:


  • Helping people make Aliyah to Israel
  • Securing the local community and its institutions
  • Maintaining critical welfare services
  • Assisting internally displaced people in multiple locations
  • Launching an emergency hotline
  • Securing temporary housing for people in transit
  • Purchasing satelite phones to maintain communications across the region
  • Securing five Jewish schools and training staff to manage crisis needs

Eli Buzunov, PR and missions coordinator in Kyiv, giving update outside damaged building

Eli Buzunov, PR and missions coordinator in Kyiv, carrying water to his local bomb shelter

Vitaliy Novikov, director of Hesed & club programs at JCC Halom in Kyiv, giving update from his home

Our community has a responsibility to respond to the crisis which is impacting upwards of 200,000 Jews along with millions of others caught in the crossfire. Thank you in advance for your support.