The Canada Community and Culture Fund
Responding to the Coronavirus Crisis and Building for the Future
The situation in Jerusalem and Israel is changing quickly and we are learning that the pandemic continues to hit Jerusalem in waves. Residents are slowly learning to live with Covid and find ways to adjust to uncertainty and a very changed world. Rapidly evolving restrictions and rates of infection have forced to be innovative and creative as we look towards a different future than we had expected. Jerusalem has one of the highest rates of infection amongst cities in Israel. One of the characteristics of the city, due to the city’s population, is a significantly higher percentage of families with children (and sometimes many children) with verified COVID19 infections.
Canadians have a long history of providing support to the vulnerable in Jerusalem and to arts organizations and institutions in the city. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Jerusalem Foundation of Canada has established the The Canada Community and Culture Fund. This new fund will support two critical areas for the wellbeing of Jerusalem: ongoing needs for vulnerable residents of Jerusalem of all ages and the recovery of the cultural sector which has been decimated by COVID. Working in close cooperation with Mayor Moshe Lion and his team, funds raised will maximize the efficient and effective delivery of essential goods and services to residents of the city.
In response to the current health, social and economic crisis, the Jerusalem Foundation continues to provide support and a safety-net to the most vulnerable residents from all population groups in the city. This support has included provision of food, respite, mental health support and outreach to those across this city who have required it. In addition, The Jerusalem Foundation has continued to support the cultural and creative life of Jerusalem during this crisis. The Canada Community and Culture Fund will build on this longstanding tradition and provide continued support to the people of Jerusalem through projects and initiatives which respond to the real needs on the ground. In recent months, through our emergency campaign, we were able to provide desperately needed support.
Examples of support of the vulnerable during COVID-19 to date include:
- Provision of culturally adapted relief kits for children whose family members have been struck by COVID-19
- Providing funding to Machshava Tova to purchase computers and laptops to low income families across the city, to enable long distance learning and connection to the community
- Ongoing assistance to elderly citizens by establishing hotline phone support, purchasing tablets/computers for home use and food packages
- Through Triple Impact, supporting visits for vulnerable at risk and socially isolated children from shelters, and child welfare agencies to cultural and educational sites in the city – helping to also support their economic recovery
Examples of support of new programs in the cultural sector in response to COVID- 19 to date include:
- Creation of a new broadcast studio to enable live streaming and broadcast of dance, theatrical, musical and arts events at the Horseshoe Cultural Center
- Installation of an outdoor sculpture exhibit during fall, 2020 at The Jerusalem Botanical Garden with works by leading contemporary artists on loan from private collectors all over Israel.
- Provision of employment opportunities for artists at HaMiffal, who will participate in creating new art and at the same time participate in renovating this emerging arts centre in Jerusalem.
Through the Canada Community and Culture Fund, we will build upon our tradition of giving and continue to have a significant impact on the city of Jerusalem.