As of 07/24/2020

The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia is committed to providing essential resources for our community during the international crisis caused by the COVID-19 Coronavirus. On March 17th, we established an Emergency Response Fund, supported by gifts from our community, including matching grants with private foundations. Our Jewish Federation Real Estate (JFRE) group leveraged their JFRE fund for an additional Emergency Campaign.

Combined, through the generosity of our community members, we have raised and leveraged approximately $2,100,000 and made grants and facilitated matching grants for critical services totaling more than $1,700,000.


Grants are focused on meeting basic needs such as food insecurity and funding for mental and physical health needs, which are critical during this time. To continue this essential service, the Emergency Response Committee is funding local food security grants to extend the food supply through August.

The Emergency Response Committee reviews each funding request with careful consideration of the highest impact and best return on investments for the needs of the community – while also making sure that our efforts are not duplicative with other community investments.


$1,431,584 has been designated and/or matched to meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable in Greater Philadelphia:

  • Abramson Senior Care, to provide ongoing food and supplies for 65 elderly adult day participants that are homebound
  • Chai Lifeline, to provide critical services and support including Kosher meal deliveries to families with children who are patients at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Congregational Rabbis Emergency Fund, to provide aid to congregants and community members who are in need of financial assistance for food, rent/mortgage/utilities and/or medical expenses
  • Federation Housing, Inc., to provide an ongoing provision of boxed lunches for 55 low-and-moderate-income senior residents
  • JEVS Career Strategies, to provide additional career counseling hours for a year to support increased demand due to COVID-19 related layoffs
  • JEVS Career Strategies, to provide weekly grocery store gift cards to 40 of their most vulnerable Helping Hands clients
  • JEVS Tikvah Residence, to provide ongoing support for increased food expenses for 9 older adults with mental health needs
  • JEVS Tikvah Residence, to provide new technology and internet capabilities for individual residents’ apartments, helping to increase residents’ sense of empowerment, safety and their ability to connect and engage with each other and the outside world.
  • Jewish Day Camp Fund, to provide grants to seven area Jewish Day Camps for additional PPE and supplies needed to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic as they prepare to open camp
  • Jewish Family & Children’s Service, to provide two rounds of grants for basic needs such as food, rent, medical, mortgage or utility payments. The first round of grants averaged $500 to 50 households; the second round of grants averaged $1,000 to 50 households.
  • Jewish Family & Children’s Service, to provide an additional therapist for tele-mental health care for three months
  • Jewish Overnight Camp, the Jewish Federation secured $300,000 from our community in support of Jewish overnight camps to help them leverage funds from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation “All Together Now” match.
  • Jewish Preschool Fund, to provide grants to local Jewish preschools for additional expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic as they prepare to open camp
  • Jewish Relief Agency (JRA), to maintain a safe and healthy work environment for ongoing food distribution to more than 6,000 clients monthly
  • Judith Creed Horizons for Achieving Independence (J’CHAI), to provide ongoing food and supplies to their 40 developmentally-disabled, home-based adult clients
  • KAVOD Survivors of the Holocaust Emergency Fund (SHEF), in partnership with Marcy Gringlas, Joel Greenberg, and Seed the Dream Foundation, to provide basic needs services for Holocaust survivors
  • KleinLife’s Meal Delivery Program, providing kosher prepared meals for 550 older adults for three months
  • Mitzvah Food Program, for those who have recently become food insecure, to offset the cost of food and supplies during three months for an increasing client base totaling 4,000. This includes additional funding as a matching grant with Marcy Gringlas and Joel Greenberg, Seed the Dream Foundation, to help alleviate food insecurity and provide healthy and nutritious food for those in our communities with the greatest need during this pandemic.
  • Personal Protective Equipment, including 1,000 KN95 (medical-grade) masks for partner agencies while they provide ongoing care to serve the basic needs of their clients, 1,500 KN95 masks for 425 Holocaust survivors, and 48,000 surgical masks for their clients
  • Philly Friendship Circle, to help families of children with disabilities to pay for basic necessities including support staff
  • Specialized Protective Equipment for Teachers, including 15,000 reusable, clear face masks for local Jewish preschool teachers and for supplemental school and day school special needs students and teachers, as it’s so important for early learners to see their teachers’ facial expressions and smiles


$154,500 has been designated or matched to meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable in Israel through the following organizations:

  • Kol Israel Haverim, to provide partial scholarships for 15 low-income residents facing financial hardships due to challenges related to the pandemic
  • Latet Israel, a matching grant with Seed the Dream Foundation, to help the most impoverished and isolated elderly, including thousands of Holocaust survivors
  • Leket Israel, the National Food Bank, to purchase nutritionally balanced meals for high-risk individuals
  • Orr Shalom, to cover Passover expenses for the most vulnerable at-risk children who have been removed from their homes due to abuse and neglect
  • United Hatzalah, to support the new “Hamal” National Civilian Hotline for citizens in need of help throughout Israel


The JFRE group initiated an independent Emergency Campaign to support programs providing resources for those members of our community who are at risk or now find themselves food insecure. The JFRE Executive Committee set aside $50,000 from the JFRE Fund, and committed to match new gifts to the Emergency Campaign dollar-for-dollar up to $50,000. Real estate professionals donated more than $50,000 to be part of a matching challenge grant.

In total, JFRE is granting $157,016 to the following programs:

  • Mitzvah Food Program, for those who have recently become food insecure, to offset the cost of food and supplies for an increasing client base
  • KleinLife’s Meal Delivery Program,  home delivery program for older adults
  • MANNA, to provide medically-tailored meals and nutrition education for people with serious illnesses
  • Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association’s Hospitality Workers Relief Program, to provide gift cards for local grocery stores and pharmacies to be distributed to hotel employees who have been furloughed, laid off or lost their jobs

Visit our COVID-19 Resources page for additional information. To make a donation to our Emergency Response Fund, click here. Check our blog for up-to-date information and resources.