The World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS) alongside the European Union of Jewish Students (EUJS) are distributing toys and gifts to disadvantaged and new immigrant children across the south of Israel. The project, called ‘Hope for Hanukkah’ was the result of cooperation between the two organisations’ chairpeople Oliver Worth and Andi Grgely who wanted to connect diaspora students to the plight of children during and after Operation Pillars of Defense.
Hope for Hanukkah has raised over $7000 in foreign donations, with money coming from the Jewish communities of Switzerland, Amsterdam and Rome as well as individual students all across Europe and the United States. Some communities started their own collection points and gifts are still arriving from Austria and Germany.
– The money collected was spent according to lists made up from requests from Absorption Centers and day care facilities across the south. Toys were purchased from independent toy stores in the south of Israel who themselves offered significant discounts and free supplies to help with spreading the holiday spirit. The students of Midreshet Rachel V’Chaya donated a significant amount of self wrapped gifts to the project with their toys going to help families under the care of Maslan, the Negev Domestic Violence Support Center.
– The project will be taking place all throughout Hanukkah and any toys or money left over will be saved until the end of December to redistributed during the WUJS annual Congress. Donations are still being accepted at hope4hanukkah.com.
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– The World Union of Jewish Students is the international umbrella organization for 48 national Jewish student unions from all over the world.