KAHAL has created an online support community for Jewish students whose programs and plans have been impacted by COVID-19. This community will serve as the center of all of KAHAL programming and all opportunities, as well as any urgent updates. Students are encouraged to use this community not only to receive updates, but also to find online support from their peers impacted in similar ways. Students should sign up here!
KAHAL ONLINE SUPPORT COMMUNITY
EMOTIONAL AND VOCATIONAL SUPPORT THROUGH JEWISH HUMAN SERVICE AGENCY
The Network of Jewish Human Services Agencies (NJHSA) and local affiliates across the United States are offering counseling sessions, vocational support, and other services for all students affected by the evolving situation surrounding COVID-19. All impacted students, both Jewish and not, can contact their local Jewish human services agency and reference “KAHAL” and “COVID” to access services. In many cases, insurance plans will cover all costs associated with treatment and services. Please join KAHAL’s online community or email COVIDinfo@KahalAbroad.org for more information.
KAHAL is thrilled to be partnering with Burnalong to bring virtual group fitness classes to your living room for free. Follow along with instructors as they teach Barre, Zumba, Yoga, Meditation, and more LIVE from their gym. You’ll see and hear the friends you invite to take the class with you- ultimately replicating the group fitness class virtually! Join hundreds of young Jews virtually working out together, sponsored through Base Hillel, Moishe House, and KAHAL. Create your account on the KAHAL landing page to redeem your free membership. Make sure you select KAHAL as your sponsoring organization!
INTEREST-FREE LOAN AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT THROUGH INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF JEWISH FREE LOAN
KAHAL and our partners understand that for many students and families, the financial implications of this situation can be trying. The International Association of Jewish Free Loans, which provided dozens of students with scholarships to study abroad this semester, has committed to making loans available to students through local affiliates nationwide. IAJFL will field requests from impacted students and families. Please contact Tina Sheinbein at TinaSheinbein@jewishfreeloan.org or (602) 230-7983.
MICRO-GRANT FUNDING & ADVISORY SERVICE FOR THOSE STILL TRAVELING
KAHAL will support students whose programs have been canceled or put online, including who choose to remain informally in their abroad locations or travel in Europe, with grant subsidies. Eligible students should click here to apply for funding of up to $50 for each of the following (up to $150 per student in total):
- Overnight stays on Shabbat (stipend per student)
- “DIY” Shabbat dinner or holiday celebrations with friends (stipend per event)
- Other opportunities on a case-by-case basis. Please be in touch with KAHAL.
ONLINE HEALTH RESOURCES
US: Text lines for free, confidential support by trained crisis counselors
- Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741
- Project Extreme: Text LEV to 741741
- JFS Houston Touching the Heart: Sign up Here
UK: Check out Student Minds for resources concerning mental health, social distancing and self-isolating, xenophobia and racism, and ideas for how to support your friends and family.
Better Help: Private online counseling from licensed, professional therapists starting at $40/session.
JFS Greenwich is offering Telehealth services to college students. Contact Rachel Kornfeld at email@example.com for more information.
ONLINE WEB SERIES
Experience Hillel@Home! Hillel has virtual meet-ups and online gathers to bring together Jewish students from around the world. Check out their events here: Hillel@Home
- Includes seminars on fitness, music, religion, spirituality, ethics, social awareness, current events, babka making, and more!
Daily Drop-In: A virtual space to connect, learn, and feel like a part of a bigger community brought to you by Base Hillel! Drop-ins take place every day at 12:00-1:00 pm EST starting Monday, March 16th. Join here!
Virtual Synagogue Services: Synagogues across the US are offering online services, special events, study opportunities, and podcasts. Check out what’s available to you here: Livestreamed Services, Torah Study, and More
Check out KAHAL on Facebook each week for upcoming virtual events!
OPPORTUNITY IN ISRAEL FOR STUDENTS WITH ONLINE CLASSES
Students impacted by COVID-19 and completing online courses have the opportunity to work from a beautiful Kibbutz in the Galilee. Gather creates retreats for young professionals on Kibbutzim across Israel. Due to the situation, we’ve teamed up with Gather in order to offer you a remote work getaway in Kibbutz Kfar Blum. Leave your contact info here and they’ll get back to you with more info shortly. For more information email COVIDinfo@KahalAbroad.org.
INTERNSHIP AT HOME
KAHAL will assist students sent home with gaining real world vocational experience through an internship at home this semester. Utilizing our network, KAHAL will do our best to match students with employers based on interests and availability. Fill out this form to start the process! *Note: students still have to apply to the employers, but KAHAL is assisting in locating the internship opportunities.
OTHER RESOURCES FOR ALL
Due to COVID-19, most international students have been sent home and are missing the chance to learn and improve their language skills. While this isn’t *exactly* the same as in person, KAHAL has set up KAHALanguages, a Language Exchange to help students keep up their skills as well as “meet” and connect with other Jewish students all over the world!
These are virtual “meet ups”. If you are able to offer some time to teach a language you are fluent in (you don’t have to be native) and you’d like to improve a foreign language, please take a minute to fill out this form!
We make a match based on your preferences, then the virtual meet up is arranged by both of you together to start your exchange! Mostly these will be 1:1 and sometimes as a group, depending on demand. The exchanges can go on as long or as short as you’d like. Think of it like a virtual pen-pal! Sign up here!
OFFICE HOURS WITH THE KAHAL TEAM
KAHAL is offering ongoing office hours to talk to students about their options, decompress, and discuss what the experience means for their academic, financial, and Jewish future. Students and parents alike can sign up for a time-slot to speak with a KAHAL team member by visiting this link or emailing COVIDinfo@KahalAbroad.org. Someone from the KAHAL team will reach out to you within 24 hours. If you need immediate support, please call Alex Jakubowski, KAHAL’s Executive Director, at 847-212-8777.
WAYS TO GIVE BACK
So many organizations are looking for extra help these days — here are a few places that you can volunteer with either in person or even remotely!
- The Jewish Volunteering Network in the UK has dozens of opportunities to help out the community!
- The American Red Cross is looking for blood donors — check out their website for more information on when and where you can donate!
- The Network of Jewish Human Services Agencies has opportunities to volunteer all around the US. Contact CovidInfo@kahalabroad.org to see what agencies need assistance in your state!
1x1 CONSULTATION WITH MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL THROUGH AMAZE PBC
Because this is a new virus, there are many unknowns. To help KAHAL students and families best deal with the situation, we’ve partnered with Amaze, a virtual medical provider in the U.S. to ensure that all impacted students and parents have immediate access to qualified medical consultations in real-time. To utilize this service you must download the AMAZE PBC app on the Apple store or Google Play store and use KAHAL’s unique access code. Please be in touch with KAHAL staff at COVIDinfo@KahalAbroad.org or register for KAHAL’s COVID-19 mobile app support community for more information and the unique access code.
DO YOU KNOW OF A STUDENT CURRENTLY ABROAD IN NEED OF A SEDER TO ATTEND?
We need your help ensuring that Passover is still the best it can be for the students who are still abroad. If you know anyone specific that needs a Seder and you want us to reach out to them personally please fill out THIS form. Additionally, do you, or someone you know in your community, want to host students for Passover this year? Please let us know so we can offer it as an opportunity to our students. You can contact Joey, KAHAL’s Director of Abroad Experience, at Joey@KahalAbroad.org. #WhereDoYouSeder
SUPPORTING KAHAL'S RESPONSE EFFORTS
To support the evolving and emerging needs, most notably Passover, of those still abroad, as well as the challenging situation for those who have been sent home, KAHAL plans to launch an emergency crowdfunding campaign from March 17-19th to raise $200,000. All gifts to this campaign will be matched dollar-for-dollar by KAHAL’s leading stakeholders in an effort to leverage KAHAL’s unique position to support Jewish students in need. If you are interested in making a contribution to the campaign early, please visit our campaign here (link here) or to volunteer to ensure we meet our goal, please reach out to Ellen Rosenfeld at Ellen@KahalAbroad.org.