How You Can Support Our Troops
JWB Jewish Chaplains Council is a service of JCC Association, which provides for the religious, educational, and morale needs of Jewish men and women in the U.S. Armed Forces.
For over 90 years, JWB’s ongoing work has included maintaining liaison with the offices of the respective Chiefs of Chaplains; program development; provision of religious supplies not available through military channels; recruiting, retention, and retraining of chaplains and lay leaders; and advice and counsel to the military and VA Jewish community.
Here’s what you can do to be part of that mission:
1. Send contributions
We send holiday packages to Jewish personnel stationed or deployed to remote overseas locations. Our shipments go out five times a year: before Rosh Hashanah, Hanukkah, Purim, Pesach, and Shavuot. At $18 per package, this is an expensive undertaking, and we are grateful for contributions that assist us in this work.
Contributing individuals and organizations can become official co-sponsors for our package shipments. For gifts of $90 (five packages) or more, we will insert a card (of your making, if you’d like) into each package stating that this shipment is made possible by that individual’s or organization’s contribution. A class of students, for example, could pool small tzedakah contributions to make a large impact in this manner.
2. Write cards and letters
Jewish service members are always happy to know that people back home are thinking of them. Assembling a group of students, congregants, JCC members, or friends to write is an effective and low cost way of showing support. Be sure to include an e-mail or postal service address if you wish to receive a response.
You may already know a Jewish service member. If so, he may be an excellent source for names and addresses of other Jews serving in the same location. Otherwise, when you are ready to mail your cards or letters, please e-mail[email protected] for names and addresses of service members, as well as mailing procedures. Or send your cards to us, and we will include them with one of the five holiday shipments mentioned above.
3. Send gifts
Our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guardmen all enjoy receiving gifts of food and other items. We can advise you on specific items to send, but here are general suggestions:
A. Send packages at times other than Jewish holiday periods. As indicated above, we at JWB are shipping at those times, as are other organizations. Service members appreciate being remembered at other times of the
year as well.
B. Be sure that food items carry kosher certification. Our policy at JWB is to ensure that the food we send is clearly marked as kosher so that all Jews may feel comfortable eating it. We urge other individuals and groups to follow this policy as well.
C. As is the case with cards and letters, you may already know service members to whom you can ship. If not, when you have determined how many packages you wish to send, please e-mail[email protected] and she will send service members’ names and addresses. Mail to service members overseas is normally sent at US domestic rates.
4. Adopt a service member
Schools and other groups can “adopt a service member,” committing to corresponding regularly with a soldier, sailor, airman, coast guardman or marine while she is deployed. We can provide information on how to do this.
5. Spread the word about JWB
Help us make sure than no Jewish service member is without a connection to Jewish life. You never know who has a relative or a friend in the military who might benefit from JWB’s support. Share what you now know about our work with others.
6. Contact us