Israel Update: Here’s what we are doing

Oct 7, 2023 | Article, Emergency, JCRC

Israel Update: Here’s what we are doing

Oct 7, 2023

Dear Jewish Colorado Community,

It has been a day filled with horrific and ever worsening news coming out of Israel. At this time, we know there are more than 300 Israelis reported killed, with news reports saying that number will go much higher. More than 1,500 have been wounded, and our global partners are telling us that more – many more – than 100 Israelis have been taken captive, with some thought to be alive and others known to have perished. The scale of this assault is unprecedented, and it is expected to deliver devastating news for days to come. Israeli military forces were said to be in engaged in continued fighting in more than 20 different locations throughout the state.

Throughout the day, we have been in touch with partners, agencies, friends, and family in Israel. Mayor Eran Doron of our partner region of Ramat HaNegev is safe, though he writes that intrusion by Hamas into his communities was prevalent. We know of many friends and family in Ramat HaNegev who have loved ones who have been kidnapped or killed. Sadly, we know the mayor of Sha’ar Hanegev Regional Council was murdered by Hamas terrorists.

Here is what we are doing:


A group of JEWISHcolorado donors have stepped forward to offer a dollar-for-dollar match up to $600,000 for donations to the Israel Emergency Fund. All emergency dollars will go to support efforts on the ground in Israel, aiding victims of terror, addressing trauma issues, and assisting with emergency medical and infrastructure needs. The match was launched by Barry and Gay Curtiss-Lusher from a shelter in a Tel Aviv Hotel and JCO Board Chair Ben Lusher and his wife Nicole.  Thanks to the many who have joined them:

$250,000 +
David and Laura Merage Foundation

$50,000 +
Diana Zeff Anderson
Singer Family Foundation
Jonathan Merage Foundation
Sabrina Merage Foundation

Lusher / Curtiss-Lusher families
Michael and Debbie Feiner
Bender West Foundation
Hal Berenson & Laura Ackerman

Charlie Gwirtsman & Nancy Reichman

Joel & Tiffany Appel
Schlafer Family Foundation
Steve Morris & Amy Morris
Michael & Susan Gordon

Jeff & Terri Auerbach
Joey & Avery Friedman
Jimmy & Wendy Miller
Steven & Debra Weinstein
Rob Kaufmann & Jen Gilbert-Kaufmann

*This list represents donors who committed to the initial pool of Emergency funds to be matched. *As of 10/8/23


Jewish Federations of North America will hold a webinar update on the latest information from Israel. Join the webinar on Sunday, October 8, 2023, at 10 a.m. MT (12 p.m. ET.). Register here.

JEWISHcolorado will host an online gathering with our own Shlicha, Nelly Ben Tal, and Nadav Eylon, Regional Director of the West Coast region for the Jewish Agency for Israel Sunday, October 8, 2023, at 7:30 p.m. Join our local zoom event and stand with our Shlichut and our statewide community. Register here.


Join an in-person community prayer service, Pray for Peace in Israel: A Community Vigil, on Monday, October 9, 2023, from 7-8 p.m. at Temple Emanuel at 51 Grape Street in Denver. Join JEWISHcolorado, Rocky Mountain Rabbis and Cantors the Jewish Community Relations Council, The Anti-Defamation League, Israeli American Council, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, The Jewish National Fund and others as we join in mourning, prayer, and solidarity.


JEWISHcolorado’s CHOICES will continue as planned with a meaningful and moving event to remember those we’ve lost, honor those fighting, and recognize the newest honoree to receive the Golda Award, and other women who have supported our community and Israel. The event is sold out.

Please monitor your email and JEWISHcolorado social media channels for the latest updates. Please support those in mourning, and keep our loved ones fighting for Israel in your thoughts and prayers:

Prayer for the Welfare of soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces

May He who blessed our fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah, bless the soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces who keep guard over our country and cities of our Lord from the border with Lebanon to the Egyptian desert and from the Mediterranean Sea to the approach to the Arava, be they on land, air or sea.

May the Almighty deliver us our enemies who arise against us, may the Holy One, blessed be He, preserve them and save them from all sorrow and peril, from danger and ill. May He send blessing and success in all their endeavors, may He deliver to them those who hate us and crown them with salvation and victory, so that the saying may be fulfilled through them, “For the Lord, your God, who walks with you and to fight your enemies for you and to save you”, and let us say, Amen.

Renée Rockford, President & CEO
Ben Lusher, Board Chair