Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG) announced Monday a decision to deliver $10 million in emergency assistance to Jews impacted by the crisis in Ukraine, which has left tens of thousands in dire straits.
As the situation in Ukraine escalates, many, especially those who are the most vulnerable, are in critical need of humanitarian aid to weather these difficult times.
GPG is a global philanthropic organization with a core focus on Jewish identity-building and educational programs. In addition to its core mission, GPG and its donors have a long history of responding to crisis situations impacting Jews around the world.
Support that includes Jewish institutions in Europe facing the threat of antisemitism, funding for improved security facilities for vulnerable civilians in Israel, and an extensive COVID Emergency Assistance portfolio providing humanitarian aid for Jewish individuals and organizations severely impacted by the pandemic.
The $10 million emergency aid package announced Monday will be distributed in two phases. $5 million in immediate funding has already been committed to supporting urgent needs related to the current crisis: Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) – to support evacuation efforts and enhancing security for Jewish organizations; Federation of Jewish Communities of Ukraine – to provide seed funding for a campaign to distribute 30,000 packages of non-perishable foodstuffs across Ukraine; Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) – to support their work with vulnerable Jewish populations across Ukraine; Regional and local Jewish community organizations operating homes for the elderly, orphanages, and other critical communal infrastructure in Ukraine.
An additional $5 million will be deployed to support humanitarian aid needs as the situation develops.
“As we watch with great distress the scenes coming from Ukraine, we see it as our duty to help Jews in danger, as we have done in other times and places,” said Gennady Gazin, Chairman of the Board of Genesis Philanthropy Group.
“As someone born in Zhytomyr, Ukraine, I am especially pained by this suffering. I hope that peace will return and the Ukrainian Jewish community will be able to withstand these hardships and thrive again.”
“The current crisis in Ukraine has led to a dramatic increase in humanitarian needs and I am ever grateful to our partners at Genesis Philanthropy Group, and to its founders, for their visionary commitment to helping and strengthening Jewish communities in Ukraine and around the world, part of their numerous philanthropic endeavors addressing this goal,” said Mark Sisisky, President of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC).
“Our teams on the ground – part of our vast presence in Ukraine and around the former Soviet Union – will be able to do so much good with this generous support. We're providing food, medicine, and other emergency aid in Ukraine and also partnering with Jewish communities in surrounding countries to welcome Jews crossing the borders.”
“In these grave times, as we pray for peace and calm, we are witnessing yet again the power of Jewish unity in the spirit of Kol Yisrael Areivim Zeh La-Zeh - All Jews are responsible for each other. It is with this in mind that we are proud to join forces with GPG to bring food to those who are in desperate need today and will be in need tomorrow,” said Rabbi Raphael Rutman of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Ukraine.
Genesis Philanthropy Group (GPG) is a global family of foundations, co-founded by Mikhail Fridman, Petr Aven and German Khan, international businessmen, investors and philanthropists. GPG aims to advance Jewish engagement into the 21st century to create a more diverse and connected global Jewish community. The work of the foundation is inspired by commitment to: strengthening Jewish identity among Russian-speaking Jews worldwide; fostering bonds and common understanding among Jews living in Israel and in the Diaspora; developing innovative formats geared towards the expansion of Jewish engagement opportunities; expanding local and global Jewish connection opportunities in the UK and Spain. To learn more, visit www.GPG.org.