From the beginning of the pandemic, the EJC and SACC teams monitored the situation in all the EJC’s affiliated communities on a daily basis and tried to respond to their needs as quickly as possible.
Dr Moshe Kantor announced a series of important measures to provide support and assistance to Jewish communities and other people in need to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus crisis. Dr Kantor expressed his full support to everyone affected on behalf of Europe’s Jewish communities and emphasised the importance of unity and solidarity in order to overcome the crisis.
SACC by EJC activated crisis-management teams, initiated online conferences with the support of the EJC to share best practices and experiences and managed coordinated action.
Our staff conducted a series of emergency visits and calls to Jewish communities across the continent, to ensure the continuity of Jewish security and Jewish services in spite of the crisis.
In the first quarter of the pandemic, at a time when most countries were facing mask shortages, the EJC supplied over 100,000 masks to Jewish communities across Europe.
Other protective equipment was provided to Jewish communities in order to secure the continuation of Jewish life during the pandemic (e.g. britot milah).
The European Jewish Fund concentrated fully on assisting Jewish communities to overcome health, social and economic effects of the pandemic. Financial support was provided to Jewish communities in distress.
The EJC also conducted a consultation on guidelines for the safe reopening of synagogues and communal buildings.
The EJC’s efforts have continued throughout the pandemic. Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day in 2021, the EJC wrote to the health ministers of all 27 EU member states to request that Holocaust survivors are given vaccines as quickly as possible. This strategy was successful, with several countries confirming that survivors would receive highest priority in their respective national vaccination strategies.