Dear JNF Campaign Leaders:


We had a pretty good week of fundraising last week and are now at more than $516 million toward our $1 Billion goal.

I am specifically pleased with our success at closing gifts at the President’s Society level ($10,000) and Negev Society level ($25,000). Between the two Societies we are up 56 gift units over the same date last year and 120 gift units compared to the same date in 2016. I also want to point out that we are up nearly $5 million over last year from gifts of $100,000 or more.

Obviously the situation at the Gaza border has been challenging, to say the least, for our friends living in the Gaza Envelope region of Israel. Through JNF’s Gaza Envelope Task Force and the Housing Development Fund, Jewish National Fund has for many years worked to support, build infrastructure and improve quality of life for the pioneers living in this region. It is important for JNF supporters to understand that long after the media turns its lens toward other stories, we will still be on the ground building and supporting these communities.  If you missed the e-blast sent by the JNF marketing team on Monday outlining the needs of the region, please click here.

In last week’s update, I announced preparations are underway for the annual Summer Blitz of JNF lay leaders spreading out across the country to assist communities in telling the Jewish National Fund story and soliciting prospects to support the annual campaign.  I am thrilled that we have a record 41 communities participating this year.  Please refer to the list of assignments to see who will be traveling to your town. Your local professional is now finalizing dates, and I am sure will soon communicate with your local team.

Everybody is coming to New York August 12 & 13 for the annual Campaign Planning Summit at the Ronald S. Lauder JNF House, 42 East 69th Street, New York.  I am looking forward to working with you to help prepare for our 2019 annual campaign. If you have not yet registered click on the link below.

On Sunday, August 12, we will provide a light lunch and time to mingle at 11:00am and the meeting will begin promptly at 12 noon. On Monday, we will begin our day at 8:30am and all participants are invited to attend the national Board of Directors meeting from 1:00 – 3:00pm. We are planning a special cocktail reception early Sunday evening with entertainment by the Israel Scouts Caravan and remarks by the esteemed Ambassador Danny Dayan, Israel’s Counsel General.


Our agenda for the two day Campaign Summit is under development, however, we plan to focus on many of these issues:

  • Helping communities use data to evaluate and develop local campaign strategies
  • Using Social Media to educate and inspire the market place
  • JNF branded events to project the strength and prestige of JNF USA
  • How to grow our donor base from 6,000 donors at $1,000 or more to 10,000
  • Asking for money can be intimidating…. Ten ideas you can put into practice today to help JNF reach our $1 Billion goal
  • In addition, you will be among the first to see our suite of 2019 marketing materials

To register for the Campaign Planning Summit, click here: CampaignSummit


We have procured a room block at the Loews Regency Hotel, 540 Park Avenue (at 61st street). Reservations can be made by calling the Loews Reservation Center phone #: 1-800-233-2356 and referencing Jewish National Fund or by going to https://www.loewshotels.com/regency-hotel/jewish-national-fund until August 1, 2018. 



Shabbat Shalom from Israel!





Bruce K. Gould
President Elect and Vice President, Campaign

D’Var Torah

By Yossi Kahana

In this week’s Torah portion, Korach, we meet a man, who by all accounts is a very intelligent, affluent, and gifted individual. A Levite by birth, he already occupies a position of prominence and prestige within the community of Israel; however he is not happy with the community’s current leadership. He felt that they put themselves above everyone else and he rallies together a band of fellow Levites to challenge the leadership of Moses and the priesthood of Aaron.

“You have gone too far! The whole community is holy, every one of them, and the L-rd is with them. Why then do you set yourselves above G-d’s congregation?”

What exactly was wrong in what Korach and his motley band of fellow agitators said? They were surely right to say, “All the community is holy.” That, after all, is what G-d asked the people to be: a kingdom of priests and a holy nation, meaning, a kingdom where all members are (in some sense) priests, and a nation whose citizens are holy.

What was wrong was their last remark: “Why then do you set yourselves above G-d’s congregation?” This was not a small mistake. It was a fundamental one. Moses represents the birth of a new kind of leadership. That is what Korach and his followers did not understand. Many of us do not understand it still.

Moses, in his humility, had a very difficult time confronting this challenge. His entire being was dedicated to the welfare of the Jewish people, and he was reluctant to see his own brothers, his own flesh and blood, punished because of their waywardness. He begged Korach and his men to reconsider and change their course of action. However, Korach refused to reconcile and Moses was forced to take steps to eliminate his rebellion, which threatened the integrity of the Jewish people.

Sometimes the worst mistakes we make are when we project our feelings onto others. Korach was an ambitious man, so he saw Moses and Aaron as two people driven by ambition, “setting themselves above God’s congregation.” He did not understand that in Judaism, to lead is to serve. Those who serve do not lift themselves high, rather they lift other people high through their leadership.

The Lubavitcher Rebbe taught that by virtue of the love we show one another, we can correct the cause of the destruction and hasten the redemption. The third Temple, which will be rebuilt with the coming of Moshiach, will be an expression of our selfless love for each other, a love that transcends our different views, beliefs and practices. And a house built on the strength of this love will never be destroyed.

Israel was built on the strength and love of the Jewish people for one another internationally. Jewish National Fund took this passion and love and created a Blue Box that would forever be the symbol of the Diaspora’s commitment to the land and people of Israel. Together, over generations, we have laid the foundations, readied the fields and planted the seeds to not only create a Jewish homeland, but ensure its future as a strong and secure one.

Shabbat Shalom,


Jewish National Fund’s Alexander Muss High School in Israel

Staff from across the country and our Israel campus came together with our colleagues on the Jewish National Fund Education team for an incredible retreat. We shared updates on how we are improving operations, tips and tricks for our recruitment team to enable reaching our long-term goal of 5,000 students a year. We talked about the significance of Israel education and how an immersive teen program in Israel can change lives and shape future generations as advocates. Finally, we explored how our college-prep study abroad program can personally affect and assist our students as they prepare for life on campus and beyond.

Updates from Israel

Gathering of Greek Maapilim at Atlit

Last Friday marked the 72nd anniversary of the arrival of the “Haviva Reick” ship to Eretz Israel. Its passengers, nearly 500 clandestine immigrants from Greece, were sent to the Atlit Detention camp to await British approval to enter the Jewish homeland. In honor of these brave men and women, all of the Greek “Maapilim” (clandestine immigrants) that made the perilous journey to the Land of Israel, and the anniversary of the arrival of the “Haviva Reick” to Haifa, Jewish National Fund partner Society for Preservation of Israel’s Heritage Sites hosted a special gathering at the Atlit Detention Camp. More than 230 Greek maapilim and Haapala (clandestine immigration) activists, and their families, gathered at Atlit for an emotional reunion, tour and sharing of stories. Also in attendance was Ms. Anna Farrou, Head of Mission at the Embassy of Greece in Israel, and family members of Dimitris Vernicos, a non-Jewish, Greek activist who helped bring thousands of clandestine immigrants from Greece to Eretz Israel.

Special in the IDF

The canine unit from Jewish National Fund partner Special in Uniform began training with the Israel Police. Police use dogs as an essential tool, in tandem with their officers, for identifying contraband and neutralizing perpetrators. Israeli police dogs are trained to identify explosives, weapons, drugs, and money, all by smell.

Meet a NetGev Entrepreneur!

"Hi! My name is Alon Tuval. I have lived in Arad for more than 25 years, and celebrated the opening of NetGev Arad in 2017. I have been renting space at NetGev for about eight months, and in that time I have received support from every possible direction. NetGev directors helped me identify needs that I was not even aware of.


I have been taking care of my sick mother for the past decade. This experience has motivated me to work on a new project in the field of augmented reality to raise the quality of life for patients with Alzheimer's. NetGev Arad connected me to my mentor, Hagai Ortner. Hagai has helped me focus and in less than a month I developed part of a prototype that proves the technological feasibility of the product. I couldn't have done this without NetGev."