Jewish War Veterans Celebrate 125th Anniversary
By Charles Rosenblum
The Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America is celebrating its 125th anniversary March 15.
From the beginning of Jewish life in America, there has been a strong tradition of military service; dating back to 1654, when Jewish settlers in New Amsterdam demanded the right to help stand guard at the stockade. Founded in 1896, JWV is one of America’s oldest organizations serving veterans and their families. JWV now has more than 300 branches in all parts of the country.
JWV’s website states, “As our veterans return from America’s current conflicts, JWV stands ready, as it has since 1896, to ensure that those who have fought our nation’s battles receive the treatment and the respect that they deserve from a grateful nation.”
JWV services include its Support Our Servicemembers, or SOS, program, a way to let those who are currently serving know that those on the home front are thinking of them and supporting them. Through this program, JWV sends packages, generally of toiletries and kosher food items, to those who are serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places of conflict throughout the globe. The organization also supplies special foods and ritual items for those celebrating the Jewish holidays on the battlefield.
JWV also provides burial and flagging services; the Veterans Affairs Voluntary Service program, through which volunteers assist veteran patients; and young leadership opportunities, including bar and bat mitzvah projects, Scouting projects, grants, a JROTC program, and a Kiddush cup program.
In addition, JWV serves as “a Jewish voice for veterans” and “the veterans voice for Jews.”
“We represent the Jewish voice across the nation and at military installations around the world,” states the organization’s website.
For more information about JWV, visit jwv.org. For information about Austin’s local JWV Post 757, contact email@example.com.
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