April 27, 2022 | 26 Nisan 5782



Did you know that our community Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration is one of the biggest community celebrations outside of Israel?!  


According to Stephen Gaerber who founded our event, “Despite our Jewish community’s relatively small size, we have been told by Israeli diplomats that Vancouver’s Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration, always occurring actually on erev Yom Ha’atzmaut, is one of the largest celebrations of its kind.”  


This year marks the 20th anniversary of our community’s celebration organized by Jewish Federation. We are thrilled that our biggest event of the year is back, in-person, after two years!  


Join us in celebrating Israel’s 74th Independence Day with Israeli dance and musical performances by local talent and special guest performers Gilat Rapaport and the InJoy band singing all your favourite Israeli classics.  


Wednesday May 4, 2022 | 7:30 p.m.
The Vogue Theatre
Tickets are on sale now!


After two months of fighting, the war continues to rage in Ukraine. It is estimated that 5 million refugees have fled the country since the beginning of the war, including tens of thousands of Jews.  Jewish Federations have collectively raised over $50 million, including nearly $1 million raised here in our community. This is an unprecedented response from our community, and we thank you for your incredible generosity.

Your gift is making a difference. Here are some of the latest impact reports we have received from our two key partners on the ground, the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and the Jewish Agency.

  • 34,000 people have been served through the JDC
  • 12,276 people have been evacuated to other countries
  • 1,800 people have been treated using telemedicine at Israel’s field hospital
  • Over 11,500 olim have come to Israel from Ukraine and Russia through the Jewish Agency
  • 18 facilities have been operated at 5 border crossings
  • Thousands of refugees celebrated Passover at seders in Moldova, Hungary, Poland and Romania, sponsored by JDC and JAFI and in partnership with Jewish Federations
  • Jewish Federations of North America, in partnership with The Jewish Agency, the JDC, and IsraAID, launched a first-of-its-kind central volunteer hub in support of refugees fleeing Ukraine. The new initiative will recruit and place hundreds of skilled volunteers, especially those who speak Russian and Ukrainian, on the ground over the next few months.


We will continue to update you as we receive more information from our partners on the ground. You are also invited to join Jewish Federation of North America’s weekly Ukraine briefings on Mondays and Thursdays from 1:30 – 2:00 p.m. PST. Register here


In March we proudly launched our climate change initiative in partnership with Hazon, the Jewish lab for sustainability. Twenty-six participants representing 13 different community organizations gathered to learn more about how their organization can contribute to change. Each participating organization will form their own green team to identify activities or practices that can make a difference.

Participants have also been invited to be part of the Hazon seal of sustainability cohort. This group will meet on a monthly basis, share experiences and information and learn from experts in the field and other participating community organizations about how to contribute to environmental sustainability.

Aligning with our organizational value of tikkun olam, it was important for us to find ways to support our community organizations to engage in the climate change conversation Jewishly. Recognizing that each organization will go at its own pace to address the issue and create its own unique meaningful ways to act, this platform allows organizations the flexibility to create a plan that is as ambitious as they feel that they can support.

It is also important that as a Federation we lead by example. We have formed our own green team that will participate in the Hazon seal of sustainability cohort and work to develop ways our organization can take meaningful steps to environmental sustainability. 

Participating organizations will also be given the opportunity to undergo an environmental audit with Hazon and apply for small green grants to implement some of the recommendations.

You can learn more about Hazon here.


#ICYMI Last month, we announced the five winners of our Extra Mile contest with Air Canada!

Frontline workers have been going above and beyond since the start of the pandemic, including school staff who have worked tirelessly to keep our children safe, all while creating a sanctuary of support for community. They have gone the extra mile to help students and families, and it was important both to Air Canada and to us that we went the extra mile for them.

Watch the video to hear what the community had to say about our five-day school’s staff and see who won!


Jewish Federation is proud to support the innovative pilot program of Richmond Jewish Day School (RJDS), Jewish Family Services (JFS) and Kehila Society of Richmond, with thanks to a generous grant from TD Bank and a donor match, to enhance students’ access to healthy and nutritious food in a way that promotes privacy, availability and inclusiveness.

When RJDS needed support with their school lunch program, Kehila Society and JFS saw an opportunity to work together to create a program that would benefit all families regardless of income.

Once a week, JFS delivers hot, healthy, plant-based meals to RJDS at no cost to students or their families. Additionally, a community fridge and pantry program stocked by JFS, Kehila, and the Richmond Food Bank, is available throughout the week with healthy snacks, dry goods, fresh produce, and meals during school hours.

The school has received incredible feedback from both students and parents who are thrilled to know that their children are receiving hot nutritious meals at school. "The research is clear good nutrition helps our children to focus, concentrate and self-regulate, which in turn results in improved learning and student performance," said Sabrina Bhojani, Principal, Richmond Jewish Day School.

Universal school food programs like these, play an important role in providing children and families in need with access to nutritious food while promoting an inclusive, non-stigmatizing environment.