Our History

Jewish Aid Australia was established in 1994 as a response to the genocide taking place in Rwanda.

In the last two decades the organisation has enabled Australian Jews of all backgrounds to respond as a community to humanitarian disasters, provide food security to the hungry, engage with indigenous communities, and assist Sudanese refugees integrate into Australian society.

Since 1994 JAA has:

  • Raised over a million dollars from the Jewish community for humanitarian disasters in Rwanda, South East Asia (Boxing Day Tsunami), the 2009 Victorian bushfire, the 2010 Haiti earthquake and the 2011 Australian Floods.
  • Set up an organisation called FareShare which disburses 1 million meals a year to those in need.
  • Assisted refugees from Sudan in integrating into Australian society through targeted support programs for women, men and children. In 2009 this work was officially recognized through a Victorian Multicultural Commission Award for Excellence.
  • Engaged with 2 Aboriginal communities, Toomelah and Boggabbilla, through the Derech Eretz initiative which runs school holiday programs in the communities twice a year.
  • Partnered with Israeli NGO Tevel Btsedek in Nepal and sent Jewish university students on meaningful one month development education experiences.
  • Facilitated innovative social justice education programs in all the major Jewish Day schools in Victoria.
  • Mobilised hundreds of volunteers to create a sustainable difference in disadvantaged communities. JAA volunteers reflect the diversity of our community, in age, skills, religious affiliation and background.
  • Increased awareness within the Australian Jewish community of important social justice issues and promoted understanding between our community and other communities.

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