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August 30, 2014 | 4th Elul 5774
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Sudan

Donate Now! See below to learn how donated funds were distributed

The crisis in Sudan is critical, with hundreds of thousands of refugees and victims of atrocities at risk of dying over the next several months. For the first time in its history, the Committee on Conscience of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has declared a “genocide emergency,” saying that genocide is imminent or is actually happening in the Darfur region of Sudan.

Commentary and photos: Jerry Fowler, staff director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Committee on Conscience.

Bahai, Chad. Hadiya Adam Ahmed, who recently crossed into Chad, lives under a tree. She was shot twice by a Sudanese soldier guarding a well.

According to the United Nations, more than 2 million people are being affected by an ongoing campaign of ethnic cleansing carried out by the Sudanese government and its proxies against the Darfur region's black African population. The current death toll is estimated at 400,000, with more than 2 million civilians internally displaced and hundreds of thousands in refugee camps in neighboring Chad. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) estimates that the humanitarian crisis could claim hundreds of thousands of additional lives within the next nine months, mainly from starvation and disease. Already tens of thousands suffer from malnutrition. A combination of the approaching rainy season and restricted humanitarian access threaten to cut off food and medical relief.

We can make a difference. Donations to the Union’s Sudan Relief Fund will be used to provide humanitarian aid to the people of Sudan through reputable agencies. The Reform Movement will work with its coalition partners in the Jewish Coalition for Sudan Relief, convened by the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and the Save Darfur Coalition, convened by the American Jewish World Service and the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, to identify the most appropriate recipients of these humanitarian funds.

Together, we can bring healing to the needy, and hope to the desperate.

Donate to the Union for Reform Judaism’s Sudan Relief Fund online or send checks payable to the Union for Reform Judaism (write “Sudan Relief Fund” in the memo section of your check) to:

Union for Reform Judaism, Attn: Sudan Relief
633 Third Ave. 7th Floor
New York, NY 10017  

For information about genocide in Sudan and what congregations can do:

Sudan Fund Distribution

Press releases

As of December 2008, more than $365,000 has been donated to the Union's Sudan Relief Fund. We have allocated the funds as follows:

International Medical Corps (IMC) - $65,000
One of the most pressing humanitarian needs resulting from the crisis in Darfur is taking place in the neighboring countries of Chad and Central African Republic (CAR).

In CAR, health services are nearly non-existent and large populations have been forced to live without food, safe water, shelter and basic preventive care for months. IMC is providing primary health care services along the Oaudda Djelle-Birao corridor, where they found over 58% malnutrition rates among children under five in the Sam Ouandja refugee settlement. This area had never received international assistance before the IMC mission conducted its assessment in January, and IMC is the first INGO present full time in this area.

In Chad, International Medical Corps has supported primary health care services since 2004 at Guereda District Hospital – the only referral hospital for the entire greater Guereda region, serving 110,000 Chadians, in addition to 45,175 Darfurian refugees in camps surrounding Guereda. Funding from the Union for Reform Judaism is supporting the provision of training for the Chadian medical team at Guereda Hospital and that will ultimately benefit Sudanese refugees from three refugee camps as well as the local Chadian population.

Child Services Center, Al Fasher, Darfur - $50,000
One of the most pressing crises facing the survivors of the genocide in Darfur is the number of orphaned children. In the Northern Darfur capital city of Al Fasher, more than 42,000 internally displaced people now reside. Hundreds are orphaned children, who can be seen loitering, begging, searching for food, and working menial jobs to sustain themselves. These funds will be used for a Child Services Center that focuses on alleviating the vulnerability of these children living and working without parental care in the Al Fasher markets. The Center will provide counseling, referrals, food, healthcare, and a space where these children can find safety by participating in psychosocial and recreational activities, basic education classes, and technical skills classes. The Union is the primary funder of this project; American Jewish World Service is contributing the remaining $15,000 to fully fund this project.

American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC): $30,000.

According to current estimates, there are now between 1,400 and 1,800 Sudanese asylum seekers in Israel. These include refugees from the conflicts in Darfur and South Sudan, as well as Sudanese who had been working in Egypt as labor migrants. Approximately one-fourth of the Sudanese asylum seekers in Israel are children between the ages of 0–18 years. The JDC program consists of three integrated activities. The core of the program utilizes volunteers to provide children at educational-risk with home-based tutoring. The program has been successfully implemented with diverse populations in Israel, including children of foreign workers. In addition, the program will provide technical support to volunteer groups already engaged in the field, and will seek to find solutions for unmet needs (e.g. early childhood).

Nothing But Nets - $25,000
Nothing But Nets (NBN) is a global campaign to combat malaria with which the Reform Movement will soon be launching a major campaign. NBN works through the UN to distribute Long Lasting Insecticide treated Nets (LLINs) to children under five and pregnant mothers in Africa. They do this through an integrated campaign called the Measles Initiative, which also provides vaccines for Polio, Measles and TB. Recently, they have been getting emergency requests from areas surrounding the Darfur crisis. As it is the rainy season, mortality rates are rising among refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). An estimated 25% of the children under 5 in refugee camps could die before the rainy season ends this November. Each $10 donated purchases a LLIN for a family, including the delivery, education and training in its proper use. 100% of donations go to nets, and these funds will be matched by the Gates foundation. Funds for this grant will be used for nets in the region of the Central African Republic (CAR) aiding refugees from Darfur.

Sudan Refugee Children’s Education Project in Chad: $20,000
The Union partnered with the State of Israel and a coalition of American Jewish organizations to provide educational services to children in refugee camps in Chad. In addition to the Union, the partners in the grant are: the State of Israel, the Jewish Coalition for Sudan Relief, American Jewish World Service; UJA-Federation of New York; and United Jewish Communities of MetroWest New Jersey. The humanitarian emergency in Darfur has forced 200,000 refugees to flee across the Sudan border into Chad. Those who managed to make the strenuous journey find themselves with few resources or options in a host community, which is also struggling with its own limited coping ability. The continuing influx of refugees has effectively tripled the population in the isolated and harsh northeastern area of Chad, stretching the host communities’ capacity to respond to the limit. The most basic services such as access to adequate health care, sufficient amounts of safe water and food, and essential household and shelter items are lacking. In addition, there are few educational resources available to meet the needs of children, most of whom have already gone without education for several months, if not years. This grant with supplement existing educational services in both the refugee camps and local community, as well as expand current services to reach greater numbers of youth.

HIAS Community Services and Psychosocial Initiative for Darfurian Refugees in Goz Amir Camp: $20,000
HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Services), in partnership with IsraAID, has been carrying out a psychosocial program in three refugee camps serving Sudanese refugees in Chad: Bredjing, Treguine and Gaga. This grant helps expand the program to the Goz Amir Camp. With the support the program has received from the Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief (the Union has a seat on the Coalition's Executive Committee), HIAS has been able to leverage this funding to attract other donors including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the US State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration, allowing the program to grow and be even more successful.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees: $20,000
The Union’s relief funds will be combined with grants of the Government of Israel and other North American Jewish organizations to support the UNHCR programs providing relief to Sudanese refugees.

Table to Table - $10,000

Civil war and oppressive dictatorships in a number of African countries has led to scores of people seeking refuge outside their homeland from the threat of death and persecution. Growing numbers of these refugees find their way into Israel. Hundreds of refugees are currently housed by the African Refugees Development Center (ARDC) in sparse shelters. Table to Table is a food reclamation organization that provides fresh fruits and vegetables to shelters. With these funds, Table to Table will establish the Fresh Produce for Refugees Project, ensuring that each refugee in ARFC's shelters receive fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis.

Ongoing Relief Efforts: $136,000
The Union for Reform Judaism is supporting the ongoing relief efforts of five international humanitarian organizations. These organizations are providing holistic care and support for hundreds of thousands of Internally Displaced People in Darfur, and refugees in Chad. The services supported by the Union’s grants include:

  • Feeding malnourished children and adults
  • Treating patients suffering from diarrhea (the main cause of mortality particularly impacting children under 5 and the aged), malaria and respiratory infections
  • Providing clean water and latrines to reduce the risk of disease
  • Conducting grassroots hygiene and health education campaigns to prevent malaria and diarrheal diseases that threaten the lives of children.
  • Creating educational programs and youth activities to engage the tens of thousands of children living in the camps.
  • Providing health care and psychosocial support

For more detailed information on the organizations that have received funds, please contact Jacob Fain at jfain@rac.orgor Rabbi Marla Feldman at mfeldman@urj.org.

 
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