Even when not at war, Israel suffers a humanitarian crisis. Israel's poorest, most vulnerable citizens go hungry daily. Iranian and Arab Oil money pours into Hezbollah, Hamas and the communities that raise and harbor terrorists, but Israeli charities must depend on us. There are many desperate families in Israel who's lives have collapsed because of deaths, injuries, closed businesses, damaged homes, and because of cutbacks in social services, as this tiny country deals with the enormous expenses for self defense during ongoing (often unreported) attacks and after so many wars.

We are often asked where to direct assistance. Here are a few of the organizations that have consistently stepped up to the plate when needed. In the midst of war, in addition to their normal operations, they are instrumental in addressing the critical needs of soldiers and victims. They all rely on volunteers and financial assistance:

Magen David Adom- Israel’s main emergency medical service needs ambulances, medical supplies, helmets, flak jackets, oxygen tanks and training equipment. Donations can be made thru the US headquarters: American Friends of Magen David Adom:

United Hatzalah- Volunteer based emergency medical services.

ZAKA Rescue and Recovery- Paramedic teams, assistance in locating and burial of human remains.

The Lone Soldier Center- seeing to the needs of the thousands of IDF soldiers who are orphans, new immigrants, and volunteers from abroad, who have no family in Israel.

Lemaan Achai- Critical assistance, counseling, food, job services.

B'Ezri- American Friends of Yad Eliezer- (96.3% tzedaka, volunteer-run with very minimal administrative costs) Donating many thousands of meals, food baskets, baby formula, shoes, and other assistance to Israel's most needy on a regular basis:

Meir Panim- one of Israel's largest soup kitchen networks. They also provide meals to undernourished school children, for many of which it is their only real meal all day. Meals and gifts can be purchased directly from their site:

La'Ofek- formerly Job Katif, this organization began with job re-training and placement for the evacuees from Gush Katif, and continues to provide employment-based assistance to Israel's vulnerable populations. Wartime operations include securing supplies for soldiers.

Karmey Hesed- providing food service, clothing, emergency prescription drugs, free loans and emergency utility assistance to the needy in Beitar Illit and other Jerusalem suburbs.

Yad Sarah- provides medical support services in Israel, including homecare, transportation and free wheelchairs, medical furniture and equipment for Israel's ill and disabled. -------------------------

Regional Soup Kitchens and Emergency Services for Israel's Poorest Citizens (non-war related):

Ezrat Avot- providing services and resources for Israel's elderly residents, with a free dining room in their senior center, and meals-on-wheels and holiday food deliveries.

Eshel Binyomin Zefat- Soup kitchens and food service in the holy city of Safed, run by Kollel Chabad:

Jerusalem Open House- Free restaurant in Jerusalem.

Matan B'Seiser Bambi- providing for Jerusalem's poor, mostly with emergency cash gifts delivered anonomously: