The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) is assisting tens of thousands of needy families in Israel and the former Soviet Union by distributing significant quantities of food for their Passover celebrations.
In Moscow, 15,000 packages were distributed to needy families, with another 28,000 food boxes delivered to other families throughout the former Soviet Union in partnership with the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. The boxes contain kosher products including an assortment of vegetables and canned fish, oil, milk and potato starch, as well as beef and turkey salami from Israel.
“The reality for many of the elderly Jews in the former Soviet Union is having to make the horrible choice between buying food, medicine or heating oil for their homes,” Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein [IFCJ president and founder] said. “They live in extreme poverty with no one to care for them. Some of these people have never experienced the Passover meal they so desperately long for as they live out the last days of their lives.”
In Israel, pallets of packed food cartons have been delivered to distribution centers in Jerusalem and other cities. With the assistance of Colel Chabad, the oldest continuous operating charity in Israel, IFCJ gave out 8,300 food boxes in the city of Ramle, and thousands more throughout Israel. Similar to the kosher foods distributed in Russia, each family received fresh produce, matzah, canned food, salt, sugar, matzah flour, mayonnaise, wine, juice, cookies, and some chocolate, plus a $35 coupon to buy fresh meat and fish for the Passover holiday.
image: IFCJ food distribution in Moscow, March, 2010.