Birthright calls on its 850,000 alumni to volunteer in Israel during Gaza war

Organization offering Diaspora Jews free trips to Israel shifts gears during war with Hamas, bringing in much-needed volunteers to work on Israeli farms.

By World Israel News Staff

Birthright Israel on Tuesday called on its roughly 850,000 Diaspora Jewish alums to volunteer in Israel during the ongoing war with Hamas.

The initiative arose from the many alumni who have contacted Birthright Israel offering to volunteer in the wake of the October 7th massacres in southern Israel.

The new volunteer program involves placing volunteers on kibbutzim and moshavim to harvest crops in the absence of the thousands of foreign field workers who returned to their countries during the war, and the thousands of Israeli workers who have been called up for reserve army duty.

The volunteers will thereby make a crucial contribution to saving the hundreds of family farms whose residents were evacuated or called into reserve duty since Hamas massacred southern-Israel residents on October 7 and launched its war against the Jewish state.

Participants will also work in donation centers to help with sorting, packing and distributing boxes of supplies for civilian evacuees and military units.

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Birthright is coordinating the effort through its Onward Volunteer Program.

The first round of applicants will volunteer for two weeks in 2 rounds in November and more spots are expected to open in December.

The program will fully cover Tel Aviv-area accommodations, all of which have fortified rooms; transportation from and to the airport, and to and from the volunteering sites; and a small stipend. Participants will pay the cost of their flights and travel insurance.

Volunteers will be working up to six hours daily, during which they’ll meet Israeli peers who also are lending a hand in farms and warehouses.

Applicants need to be Diaspora Jews between the ages of 18 and 40, regardless of their previous Israel-program experience, with preference given to those who have already participated in Israel programs and who are ages 25 and up.

“I have been gratified by the Birthright Israel alumni – ranging from those who came to Israel just a few months ago, all the way back to those who participated in our first year back in 1999 – who have reached out since October 7th to ask how they can help,” said Gidi Mark, Birthright Israel’s chief executive officer. “This initiative is a meaningful and practical way to stand with Israel and to actively assist a great need.”

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