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International Fellowship Of Christians & Jews

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: International, Religion

Mission: Promote understanding and cooperation between jews and christians and to build broad support for israel and other shared concerns.

Programs: Isaiah 58: provided 349,687 poverty-stricken jews in the former soviet union (fsu) with food, clothing, medicine, and heating fuel; isaiah 58 also funds an extensive network of jewish children's homes in the fsu - providing a safe shelter, education, and security for orphans and children living on the streets. Isaiah 58 also provides emergency relief during times of crisis. In response to the crisis and war in the ukraine, the fellowship provided emergency humanitarian aid will provide medicine, food, supplies for soup kitchens, and security for synagogues and other jewish institutions in the embattled cities of the region. Isaiah 58 includes the following projects and the number of individuals assisted - total 349,687basic needs & security:-basic needs support for needy jews in fsu, 173,062 children & elderly-food aid (food packages, vouchers, hot lunches, food for holidays), 100,025 children & elderly-medical services & medicines, 15,600 children & elderly-food for school pupils, 10,000 children-security for jewish institutions worldwide, 51,000 people

guardians of israel: provided 1,010,825 poor israelis with food, housing, medical care, clothing, heating fuel, and other basic necessities; guardians is a lifeline for needy israelis, funding hundreds of special projects such as children's summer camps, therapy programs for war veterans and terrorism victims. Guardians also provides support to the israel defense forces (idf) and emergency relief during times of crisis. During the war, protective edge, the fellowship acted to meet the needs of israelis in the line of fire. We provided emergency equipment for first responders, installed mobile bomb shelters in under-protected areas, established a hotline for homebound elderly in need, offered free counseling to victims of trauma, and much more. Guardians of israel includes the following projects and the number of individuals assisted - total 1,010,825basic needs & community programs:-clothing for impoverished & orphaned children, 28,100 children-food packages, including holiday meals for the needy, 48,883-vouchers for food, 132,214 people-food for needy children, 810 children-19 soup kitchens (1,948,600 meals/year), 8,730 people-heating aid for the elderly, 24,750 people-fund for emergency basic needs, 69,664 people-backpacks & school supplies for needy students, 22,500 children-support to idf widows & orphans, 6,000 women & children-support to battered women, 180 women & children-support to secondhand furniture center for the needy, 1,680 people-basic needs (food, meals, medicine) for the elderly, 10,688 elderly-renovation of foster homes, dormitories & youth villages, 1,435 children & youth-fund for special community programs for children in foster homes and orphanages, 278 childrenstrengthening programs:-programs for the elderly (day centers & clubs), 14,665 elderly-programs for women (empowering centers, assistance to women without family support), 360 women-programs for children & youth at risk, 12,208 children-academic studies/scholarships for graduates of idf fighting units, 250 recently released needy soldiers-scholarships for students from the druze community, 50 students-community based activities in the south, 400 peoplesecurity-related emergency needs:-soldier's welfare programs (emergency aid, gift cards, food cards, adopt a battalion), 85,217 needy soldiers-support programs for former needy soldiers, 320 people-emergency renovation and equipment for hospitals, 104,950 peopleoperation protective edge 2014:-bomb shelter and mobile shelter construction and installation, 200,000 people-emergency equipment provided, 56,400 people-food cards for needy soldiers, 6,000 soldiers-respite for children and residents of the south, 73,593 children and adults-renovation of soldiers clubs, 67,500 soldiers-basic needs for needy soldiers, 33,000 soldiers

on wings of eagles: provided aliyah (immigration to israel) assistance to 21,437 oppressed and impoverished jews around the world. Wings also provided critical resettlement assistance (food, clothing, housing, job training, and hebrew lessons) to 30,287 jewish immigrants living in israel. In late 2014, to increase the number of olim (immigrants) and enhance the effective integration/ absorption process in israel, the fellowship established its own aliyah and klitah operation. By year-end the first two charter flights had brought 439 immigrants to israel from war-torn ukraine. On wings of eagles includes the following projects and the number of individuals assisted - total 51,724immigration:-aliyah from the former soviet union (fsu), turkey, middle east, and ethiopia, 20,000 people-recovery of jewish identity programs, 1,000 people-fellowship freedom flights from the ukraine, 437 peopleabsorption:-ethiopian community-based programs, 25,587 people-assistance for ethiopian immigrant soldiers, 700 soldiers-basic needs support for fsu immigrants, 4,000 people

Community Stories

38 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

8

Donor

Rating: 5

After hearing all the rumors about this organization I took it on myself to contact the Israeli government to ask them about how the IFCJ were helping the Jewish people and I was told that if not for the IFCJ they would not be able to help as many Jews to migrate to Israel and that the IFCJ plays a major part in doing so. It is so easy to criticize others who are doing, in order to try and justify sitting on the stool of do nothing. So all of you with doubts, before you commit murder with your tongue do what I did, send an email directly and ask the government how the IFCJ are helping.

Review from Guidestar

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

The good rabbi tells us about the poor ladies that can't afford their most needed meds; yet he never mentions the fact that the state of Israel has socialized medicine, and is one of the best medical care giving countries in the world. I'm skeptical of the whole organization (IFCJ).

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Rabbi ECKSTEIN is doing everything he can to help the Jewish people. Obama is no help, he wants to divide the nation of Israel. GOD gave the land to the Jews and if we don't stand with Israel GOD will not bless American. The Jews are GOD choosy people. And I myself stand with ISRAEL. MAY GOD BLESS JERUSALEM
Read your bible people.vikki

7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

i believe that the rabbi is what other people say he is a corporate blood sucker who makes more on taxes than my mother does in a year. i bet that most of the money doesn't even go to the food packages for the needy holocaust Jews in the former soviet union. he needs to be stopped this charity is just a scam!!

8 rogerlhull

Donor

Rating: 1

Bummer! Salaries are far too high. When you remember that all of the Rabbi's expenses (and those of at least his senior staff) are invoiced/per diemed/reimbursed, this bunch is living mighty high on the hog.

Previous Stories
17

Donor

Rating: 3

Everything I read and hear about this charity is good, BUT I am choking over Rabbi Eckstein's salary! $324,000 for the year!! What the dickens is that about? In my mind, anything over $100,000 for any employee of any charity--top dog or not--is inappropriate. I have no doubt that all of Rabbi Eckstein's charity related expenses are paid, so the 324,000 dollars goes directly into his pocket. At least $225,000 of that belongs in the hands of Israel's needy. I am really struggling to continue giving money to this charity since I am a retiree living on about $45,000 per year. I don't begrudge him a good lifestyle, but from my vantage point it seems that that can be achieved on $100, 000/yr if all your work related expenses are paid.

Review from CharityNavigator

17

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 1

My opinion: This appears to be primarily a money making business masquerading as a charity. Not a good venue for your charitable dollars. I would recommend you find a more reputable place to put your charitable contributions to work.

Review from Guidestar

19

Donor

Rating: 5

I live in Israel, now 7 years. At first, the "good" Rabbi's ads on the radio seem a little strange. He asks for donations here in Isarel. He also does show where the money goes and tells stories about how his charity works. All that is normal for non-profits. BUT! He is giving to many Israelis which are below the poverty line. He gives to children and to mothers that can't figure out how to "end the month" (that's a sad Israeli term). There are poor in Israel and there are many who are not supported by the state. Israel, dispite the image it has in the US is not a rich country. Israel also has a great deal of economic inequality.

18 Joanne45

Donor

Rating: 5

To be a balanced Christian and to want the most out of your giving you must never forget Israel. I give to cover all my basis with God. I am privileged to give to a man who touches the poor and hasn't forgotten the elderly. He goes in and loves the very ones God loves. How many have we fed this month. I am proud to say I have been a part of something great, because this man is doing great things. He hears from God and is deserving of his pay check. No one complains about an athlete making $10 million dollars a year throwing a ball around, but if a man of God makes an income and raises money in doing so he is put down. Every man should be paid is wages. This man raises over 100 million a year and touches thousands of lives with the love of God. Blessings and honor Amen!

42

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

According to CharityWatch the rabbi's salary is $1.2 million almost triple the amounts cited on this thread. http://www.charitywatch.org/hottopics/Top25.html

16

Donor

Rating: 1

Who would give this???? What are you just stupid??? Whats wrong with you???

9

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

To me it is strange that a group of people with relatives in the US that vote for an extremely high democratic ticket, have continuous ads for $25 food baskets on conservative tv news stations such as fox.

20 Lynn83

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been giving to this organization for many years.one of the reasons that I support this group is because John Hagee supports it.I am sure he checked it out before he gave.I would like to know how much money actually goes to the Jews.I support the wings of eagles program.

14

Donor

Rating: 1

In terms of personal wealth, Israel and it's citiziens are more than capable of feeding their own, and for any "christian" charity to beg Americans to send Israel money when there is such overwhelming need in the United States already is laughable.

I can assure you Jesus Christ does not know this organization.

34 Victoria36

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

If you want to donate to Israel, donate through your local Jewish Federation or Jewish, Friends of the IDF , Magen David Adom, Israel's emergency medical response agency AFMDA .
There are a lot of legitimate organizations for donating to Israel.
Thank you for supporting Israel in this difficult time.

18

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

Spending millions on advertising with video of pathetic Jews getting food boxes from Israeli army begs the question: Who are these people and why don't the people of Israel take better care of themselves and their fellow citizens? I am quite certain they don't get invited to dinner with the fancy overpaid
Rabbi that is picking your pockets to fill his!

40

Donor

Rating: 1

We took in my mom and at first, we amused her with her charitable giving. We were, however, concerned with the amount of mail (3-4) times a week she would get from these people. They would send cards of families she helped (but seriously, how hard is it to fake that?) and lots of impassioned letters pleading for money. It was not until my husband did her taxes and found she gave away half her savings to them that we called a halt to it and demanded she is taken off the mailing list. I am disgusted on how she was relentlessly asked for donations, taking advantage of her good heart. Upon extensive web research I am also disgusted at what the head makes. Yes, he makes over $400,000 a year, but that is in take-home. He also tucks away $600,000 a year for his retirement. What kind of person takes that much money for retirement and what kind of life does he lead that he needs that much? Ridiculous!

I think if this organization was run better and did not waste 60% of the dollar on admin, advertising, wages, etc. with maybe around 40% actually going towards helping the Jewish people, it would be worth giving to. I would recommend steering clear of this charity and doing your homework to find one worthy of your hard-earned dollars.

24

Donor

Rating: 2

I used to contribute monthly to the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, but then I found out that the Rabbi makes more the $400,000 per year -- and probably has an expense account to boot. I believe in paying the laborer his due, but $400K is ridiculous -- more than $1,000 per day! I would go back to regular giving if Rabbi Eckstein would cut his salary in half.

36 CarlosG

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 3

I can not understand the rancor of some reviewers on this topic. First about the salary. People have complained that he makes $370 thousand, $400 thousand, and more than $470 thousand dollars. Did they expect him to socialize with moneyed individuals in a wrinkled suit and cap in hand? Traditionally those who donate large amounts to charity are not impressed by a homeless individual knocking on their door. In actuality I believe that he makes close to $500,000. That is a non-issue. To put it in perspective, for every $50.00 you would donate, 22 cents goes into the rabbi's pocket. When I donate to food shelves, or clothing centers for the homeless locally, it would not bother me that the administrator makes a buck every time I donate $250.

As to personal attacks...one commenter mentioned that the rabbi had been condemned by the Orthodox. To that I would have to ask which Orthodox? The only criticism of which I am aware coming from Orthodox organizations is a claim that defines Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein as a closet Christian. His organization has been a viable charity in Israel for thirty years, though the name International Fellowship of Christians and Jews wasn't used until 1991.

The more damaging assessment comes in the realm of the amount of money necessary to raise a dollar. The actual fundraising expenses reported to the IRS are in the nature of 39%. Thus it takes 39 cents to raise a dollar of which 53 cents goes to the designated charity, which leaves 8 cents for administrative expenses. If I was a retailer, I would consider that a great return on my investment. How do I determine this for a charity? To begin with, the worst charities only spend between 2.5% to 10% on the actual subject of the donation. The rest goes to...well you know. The best spend anywhere from 75% to 90% on the subject of donation. Most fall in between those ranges. The BBB standards of 65% when dividing program expenses by total expenses gets a minus mark for IFCJ which is only 54%. On the other hand the American Red Cross which passed the BBB test has been in continues hot water with federal investigators since before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita when they pocketed the money earmarked for those disasters by direct contribution.

The top performing charity merely uses its donations for education and provides no direct aid to the needy. But...the Joshua Fund mentioned in one comment, has an overall rating of 61.xx% while the IFCJ has a 54% rating, not terrible, except the main reason it is that high is with a higher score in financial accountability. Joshua has a profile of $5 million, whereas IFCJ has a $100 million profile. As I've checked around to see where my Israel money is best spent I have not found anything that large appreciably better.

I donate to a number of Israel charities, and this is one of them. Am I satisfied with the amount they spend on fundraising? No. but I will continue to donate until something better that actually feeds the needy, comes along. I will look more into the Joshua Fund, but last year they ran a deficit and that isn't a good sign for longevity.

A final note: if I was donating 10% of my income to this charity alone, then I would look elsewhere. My consideration is also weighed by the fact that many of the top rated org. are umbrella groups I don't know what is done with the money given to their various subsidiaries.

18

General Member of the Public

Rating: 3

Rumors of million + salaries, and donations that exclude messianic Jews; those that believe in Jesus Christ, should not stop good hearted people who want to bless Israel with a donation. Those who bless Israel will be blessed. Before you donate, look around, there are numerous legitimate organizations that do charitable work there. Check them out, see how much of your donation reaches it's destination, and reaches the people you intended it for. May your hearts be in the right place, and may God bless.

38 Gary26

Donor

Rating: 2

I donated to this fund monthly by credit card largely because I wanted to bless the Jews through some charity or outlet. The IFCF seemed to have a lot of information and advertising that captured my attention. However, over time I realized that they must be spending millions in advertising because I would receive elaborate advertising 2x a week asking for more money. I did not like that. Also, they never mentioned Christ at all but only catered to Judaism’s beliefs. What sealed my decision to stop my donation was when I read about Rabi Eckstein’s incredible salary. That salary includes my donation and could be used to help many poor jewish people. It seems the good Rabi is more interested himself than he should be. I plan to give to the Joshua Fund which is a Christian organization who helps Jews and is chaired by a Christian Jew.