At a Crossroads as the New Year Begins

The Jewish people are at a crossroads.

We enter this New Year with the U.S. Congress preparing to vote on a controversial nuclear agreement with Iran. A country with a history of human rights violations, support for terrorism, plus aggressive actions towards Israel and other neighboring countries.

At the same time, there’s a huge rise in global anti-Semitism. It’s no longer safe to wear a kippah on the streets of Paris. London’s seen more than 50 violent attacks on Jews in the last year. Even here in the U.S., we’re seeing more swastikas and anti-Jewish slogans spray-painted on our synagogues and institutions, most recently in San Antonio. More than 100 Jewish gravestones were recently toppled in Philadelphia. And through it all, these growing threats are driving our brothers and sisters to a Jewish state under siege.

Jewish Federations play an active role in supporting and protecting our people, no matter what the political, economic or social environment.

In economically troubled Greece, where 85% of people polled believe Jews have too much power in global finance, your gift sustains a lifeline of material aid, scholarships, job training and Jewish renewal for troubled Jewish families. In war-torn Ukraine, where more than 350,000 Jews are caught in the crossfire of the conflict, your gift and the work of Federation partners help make the difference between life and death.

We need to secure our schools, camps, synagogues and community centers—in Jewish communities at home and across the globe. We need to help people who are making aliyah, as immigration to Israel surged 40% in the first three months of this year. From the Ukraine, aliyah has almost tripled. And 120,000 French Jews are expected to come to Israel in the next four years.

From flood-devastated Houston to war-torn Ukraine, YOU are there. You’re giving food, shelter and medical care wherever there’s a need.

Elul has begun, along with the blasts of the Shofar. I approach the New Year wanting to do better. Each day I am thankful I have the opportunity to make a difference, thanks to the meaningful impact of the Jewish Federation.

As the world around us struggles with complex and life-altering issues, I hope we all find the strength to make an impact. Wishing you and your families a peaceful, healthy and joy-filled New Year.

Shana Tova,

— Diane Sloyer, Executive Director 

     Jewish Federation of Rockland County


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