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Murals and a Mobile Petting Zoo Help Lift Spirits of Israeli Children in Bomb Shelters

Contact: Sarit Schonbrun • JNF Communications Manager • 212-879-9305 ext. 222 •

August 11, 2006 -- New York, NY -- As Jewish National Fund (JNF) summer camps in central Israel fill with children who have come to escape life in the north fo a few days, many young people remain in bomb shelters, preferring not to leave their families.

Extending its outreach to those still up north, JNF has begun to send counselors from Chugei Sayarut, Israel's top youth movement and a division of JNF, to organize activities and games in bomb shelters.  Children play with hamsters, conduct science experiments, and put on performances.  Last week, a graffiti artist visited bomb shelters in Acco and Hatzor Haglilit, helping children decorate the walls of their temporary homes.  

In addition to reaching out to the children of northern Israel, funds raised through Operation Security Blanket, JNF’s emergency campaign, are being used to purchase emergency equipment and fire trucks for firefighters battling forest fires caused by rocket attacks and to build security bypass roads to protect residents living along the Gaza border.  To date, the campaign has raised over $4 million. 

“Once again, JNF has proven its ability to make a meaningful contribution to Israel’s residents," said Asher Wahnish, director of the Acco community centers.  "They do this by the projects that take place in our city during normal times, by sending children from the north to be guests at the field centers during the present crisis, and by this new project of painting pictures in the bomb shelters.  These activities make an indelible impression on us.”

For more information or to support Operation Security Blanket, visit or contact your local JNF office at 888-JNF-0099.

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JEWISH NATIONAL FUND (JNF) began in 1901 as a dream and vision to reestablish a homeland in Israel for Jewish people everywhere. Jews the world over collected coins in iconic JNF Blue Boxes, purchasing land and planting trees until ultimately, their dream of a Jewish homeland was a reality. JNF gives all generations of Jews a unique voice in building a prosperous future for the land of Israel and its people.

JNF embodies both heart and action; our work is varied in scope but singular in benefit. We strive to bring an enhanced quality of life to all of Israel’s residents, and translate these advancements to the world beyond. JNF is greening the desert with millions of trees, building thousands of parks, creating new communities and cities for generations of Israelis to call home, bolstering Israel’s water supply, helping develop innovative arid-agriculture techniques, and educating both young and old about the founding and importance of Israel and Zionism.

JNF is a registered 501(c)(3) organization and United Nations NGO, which continuously earns top ratings from charity overseers.

For more information on JNF, call 888-JNF-0099 or visit


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