Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund Update

Dear Colleague;

Thanks to everyone across our Federation system who have been working to bring support and relief to our Houston Jewish community!  Here is today’s update:

First Emergency Grant of $500,000 Delivered to Houston Federation

JFNA’s Emergency Committee met this afternoon and approved the first grant of $500,000 from over 4,000 donors to the Houston Federation to support the immediate relief and recovery efforts of the local community.  The funds will be used to assist displaced families with temporary housing and food, and supplies to clean up an estimated 1,000 homes of Jewish community members that sustained severe flood damage.

First National Federation Team Arrives in Houston

A team of three senior professionals from JFNA, UJA Federation of New York, and the Los Angeles Jewish Federation arrived this afternoon to begin supporting the local Federation and community in organizing their recovery efforts. The team will be particularly focused in helping determine the range of social and educational needs facing community members, assessing the damage to local institutions and organization and how they can be helped to get back in operation, and developing mechanisms for managing the professional and volunteer service efforts.

This team joins a strong team of local Houston professionals from Federation, JFS, JCC and other institutions who unfortunately have gained much experience with floods in recent years and from assisting New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

Federation Funding Efforts

Fundraising efforts across the Federation system, including mass appeals, approaches to foundations, and grants from local Federation emergency funds and endowments continue to grow.  We estimate that more than $2.5M has been raised, including funds raised in Houston.  Please report local fundraising results to so we can track the breadth of our system’s efforts. These funds are what make possible our emergency grants.


Today’s $500,000 grant used most of the cash on hand to date.  Please forward all available cash to JFNA by the end of the week so that we can be in a position to continue our support to the Houston community next week.

The Trajectory of the Storm

While the storm has thankfully moved past Houston it has continued to have a powerful impact in eastern Texas and western Louisiana.  JFNA’s staff has been checking in with the small communities in that area to assess their situation. 


Jerry Silverman



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