One-third of Holocaust survivors in the U.S. live at or below the poverty line. Having already endured so much in their lifetimes, and having lost so much of their families in the Holocaust, too many survivors now find themselves growing old alone and lacking adequate support. Routine expenses — for medication, home repairs or food — can be a strain, and any unexpected expense can send their lives into disarray.

Our survivors should never feel forgotten, and should never go without. That’s why our Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia has teamed up with the national nonprofit Kavod, the Seed the Dream Foundation and Jewish Federation-supported JFCS for a new program to provide emergency aid to local survivors. Called the Kavod Survivors of the Holocaust Emergency Fund (“Kavod SHEF”), it is a fund used to help survivors in our Greater Philadelphia region pay for medical bills, rent, food and home repairs. The need is clearly present. Since the program was launched one month ago, Kavod SHEF has already given away $24,000 in local funding, much of it in the healthcare arena—a new pair of prescription glasses, hearing aids, dental care and the like.

Do you know of a Holocaust survivor living in Greater Philadelphia? They can get the process started by calling the confidential Kavod SHEF hotline at 720.295.8484. And spread the word. A little help can make a world of difference.

At the Jewish Federation, we work to ensure the safety, comfort and dignity of each of our survivors through programs like Home Repairs for Holocaust Survivors and the Northeast NORC. We also help to ensure the memory and lessons of the Holocaust are never forgotten through programs like our remarkable Holocaust Youth Symposium. For more information about our Holocaust educational resources, click here.