The British Jewish community is mobilising and coordinating urgent humanitarian relief operations and practical support for refugees on the ground in Ukraine, in neighbouring countries and here in the UK. We will be updating this page regularly with the latest information on the various initiatives currently underway and the various ways we as a community can support them.
The Board of Deputies of British Jews together with the Jewish Leadership Council jointly convene a Ukraine Task Force bringing together leading Jewish communal organisations, denominations and leaders to co-ordinate our efforts, avoid duplication of effort and provide strategic and efficient aid and support for Ukrainian refugees. The bulk of our efforts are focused on arranging critical accommodation and support services to Ukrainian refugees and providing financial assistance to relief efforts at home and abroad that will provide the most direct assistance to those most in need.
We are proud of and humbled by the British Jewish community’s response to the crisis and readiness to help.
Homes for Ukraine
If you have been matched to host a refugee through the Homes for Ukraine Scheme, please help us understand how we might support you by completing this questionnaire.
We have received many enquiries about how you can register to provide accommodation for Ukrainian refugees. We have prepared an information toolkit of the latest information about refugee sponsorship below:
To find out more about hosting a Ukrainian family with World Jewish Relief click here.
International Jewish Relief Efforts
World Jewish Relief has been operating in Ukraine for decades and is currently supporting 29 partner organisations and delivering services to 8,000 Jewish elderly, those out of work and those living in poverty. WJR partners across the country describe fear, panic and disbelief, and are doing everything they can to protect their communities in the face of active conflict. They are responding to the most urgent humanitarian needs as they arise, prioritising food, cash, medical, material, and psychological support for the worst affected, whether fleeing their homes or unable to escape violence. In addition to on-the-ground support in Ukraine including helping those fleeing war, they are assisting those who have crossed into Moldova, Poland and Transnistria. They are also supporting those beyond the Jewish community where they can in Ukraine Government Controlled Areas close to the contact line. Their Ukraine Crisis Appeal is the most immediate and effective way individuals can directly support their efforts.
Through our global federation, the World Jewish Congress, has a number of active operations in Ukraine and in neighbouring countries. The Association of Jewish organizations and communities of Ukraine (VAAD of Ukraine) is organising deliveries of humanitarian aid from the border of Ukraine to those in need around the communities in Ukraine. Among the items that have been distributed are medicine, sleeping bags, and heating devices.
Likewise, the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine (JCU) is engaged in the situation on the ground and seeking all possible avenues to provide help to the tens of thousands of Jews who remain in the country. The JCU is focused on providing critical life-saving aid to many elderly Jews in Kyiv, among whom are many Holocaust survivors. These people cannot be evacuated due to their age and medical condition.
WJC staff established a working group of communities bordering Ukraine, including Belarus, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia, creating informal channels to communicate and share information concerning humanitarian resources. Actions being undertaken by these communities, in coordination with local and international organisations, include: the transport of humanitarian aid to border crossings, railway stations and other areas, the establishment of crisis management protocols, and other activities to provide care for refugees arriving in their respective countries.
The Security and Crisis Centre of our European federation, the European Jewish Congress, in collaboration with local church groups, has setup emergency hotlines and deployed crisis management teams in Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary to assist with urgent relief efforts.
The Slovakian Jewish community in the last few days is active in supporting the influx of refugees securing transportation and accommodation and coordinating with colleagues and partners in the country and with neighbouring regions.
The Federation of the Jewish Communities in Romania and the Jewish Community of Moldova, in cooperation with the Jewish organizations on the ground, provide numerous Jewish refugees with accommodation, medical aid, clothes, psychological help and transportation.
The communities are, of course, not limiting their support to Jews, but also supporting all refugees entering their countries.
In addition, we are coordinating with Israeli authorities, the Jewish Agency for Israel and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, the European Jewish Congress and Euroasian Jewish Congress, as well as smaller groups across Europe and Israel, to exchange information and to reinforce support for logistic and transport efforts for refugees.