Thursday, December 21, 2000

What should we be doing?

You will remember I wrote recently under the above subject, about the project our community took on to adopt a specific front line IDF unit, through the Vaad LeMaan HaChayal ("The Association for the Well-being of Israeli Soldiers") . Some of you wrote back and said that you would like to support the project - and others I am sure intended to! I won't convert my irregular emails into a fund raising drive, so after this, I will not send more "appeals", except maybe to report on progress from time to time.

Saturday night a week ago, a meeting was held at the home of one of our families where the unit commander spoke and presented a video of the activities of the unit.

Rabbi Katzin, one of the local Rabbis, spoke and emphasised that prayer and trust in G-d was important, but it was also our duty to take action to provide for our physical safety and support those who did so on our behalf. Representatives the Vaad LeMaan HeChayal, explained to us their activities and what would be done with our funds. Of significance is that this is a totally volunteer organisation with no overheads – so that 100% of our donations are used for the designated purposes.

On that evening, we raised enough to outfit a lounge at the main base - including basic furniture, basic home entertainment gear and physical fitness equipment. This is particularly important for this unit as a place to unwind after their especially grueling missions, as they have had to build new bases to serve as living quarters since leaving Lebanon, and the soldiers of this unit receive little home leave due to the type of missions that they perform.

We are continuing our fund raising, with a plan to outfit similar lounges in the other smaller satellite bases of the unit.

Donations in Israel should be made out by cheque to the Vaad LeMaan HeChayal, and from the US to the American Friends of the IDF. These cheques should be forwarded to me (together with your name and address):

David Frankfurter
38 Ahad Ha'am Street
Ra'anana 43211

I will forward on the donation, and you will receive a tax deductible receipt in due course.

From Australia, a tax deductible donation can be made to the UIA, and I am told that you can ask for it to be earmarked to the Vaad LeMaan HeChayal - Haminyan HeChadash, Ra'anana project. Here the funds will be used specifically to support new immigrant refugees, who have made their way to the unit. The address is:

United Israel Appeal
146 Darlinghurst Road
Darlinghurst, NSW, 2010
Tel: (02) 9361 4273

From the UK a tax deductible donation to the Ametz Lochem UK office can be made. Ask for the donation to be earmarked for Ametz Lochem/IDF unit 869. The funds will then be used to provide higher education scholarships for needy graduates of our adopted unit. The details are:

Israeli Ex-Servicemen's Education Fund
87 Bell Lane,
London NW42AS
Tel: 020 8203 7135 Fax: 020 8203 6918 email:
representative of Ametz Lochem: Ms Alice Krieger (mobile phone 07931712737)

For Australia & the UK this provides a tax deductlible method of donating. In this case, please send an email to let us know so that we can keep track of our project. If tax deductibility is not an issue - you can also send a cheque made out to the Vaad Lemaan HeChayal directly to me.

The attacks on Synagogues in far away Australia, the anti-Israel and anti-semitic chats on the Washington Post website, the media bias which started these emails all confirm what we know - whether we live in Hebron, Jerusalem, Ra'anana, Los Angeles, London or Sydney, we all rely on a strong Israel and individual young soldiers to defend our borders and our lifestyle. In these difficult times, we all feel that we should be doing something to let the soldiers on the front line who are defending us know that although we don't share the burden, at least we share the concern. This project makes a practical difference & I urge you to join it by making a contribution, and by encouraging your friends and acquaintances to contribute too.

Happy Channuka


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