National Council of Jewish Women Raises Unprecedented $1 Million From the Jewish Community to Help Patients Access Abortion Care

The donations made to the Jewish Fund for Abortion Access, primarily by thousands of small-dollar donors, are going to help patients in the U.S. access care 

NATIONAL – Today, National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) announced that its Jewish Fund for Abortion Access surpassed a million dollars in donated funds, which directly help thousands of patients navigate an increasingly complex abortion care landscape after the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. These funds help patients who need immediate resources to cross state lines, stay at hotels, and pay for abortion care in partnership with the National Abortion Federation (NAF). The Fund, which NCJW planned in anticipation of the Court’s decision, is the first time that the 130-year-old organization has ever fundraised in support of a coordinated, movement-wide effort domestically. The million dollars the Fund has raised came primarily from thousands of small-dollar donations from individuals moved to help after the Supreme Court’s ruling this summer.

“This is a moral emergency. People in this country can’t access basic healthcare, including abortion, and we won’t stand idly by as more and more stumbling blocks are laid in front of patients” said Sheila Katz, CEO of National Council of Jewish Women. “We launched the Jewish Fund for Abortion Access to connect those most impacted by abortion bans with the emergency resources they need to receive reproductive healthcare. Jews believe in kavod habriot, the dignity of every human being, and full access to abortion is essential to uphold that dignity for all women and people who can become pregnant. We are so proud to see thousands of our community members donating what they can to support access to essential health care in a communally Jewish way. The Fund is a vehicle for people to turn their Jewish values of prioritizing health, pursuing justice, and showing up to take action into real-life, tangible impact.”

NCJW launched the Jewish Fund for Abortion Access in May 2022 after the leaked Dobbs decision alerted the public of the imminent fall of Roe. Instead of reinventing the wheel, NCJW wanted to direct funding to an established organization that could quickly get funds to patients that needed them the most. NAF runs the National Abortion Hotline, which helps patients from the beginning to the end of the abortion care process, ensures people seeking abortions get the care they deserve through its infrastructure to provide funding, guidance, and travel support for abortion care to patients anywhere in the country, including running the largest abortion hotline in the country.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the generous support from NCJW with their Jewish Fund for Abortion Access,” said Melissa Fowler, chief program officer of National Abortion Federation. “Since the Dobbs decision, accessing abortion care has become exponentially more expensive as abortion bans force patients out of their home states for care. We have seen a significant increase in need for funding to cover travel related expenses, including flights, hotel accommodations, and food stipends for those traveling to access care. The Jewish Fund for Abortion Access helps make abortion care accessible to any patient who needs it, regardless of where they live or how much money they have.”

Over 90 percent of the more than 5,000 donations to the Jewish Fund for Abortion Access were $250 or less. A number of donors also organized creative fundraisers, raising thousands of dollars from their congregations and local communities for the cause. These efforts include:

  • In DC, Temple Sinai’s reproductive justice task force encouraged their congregation to donate to the Jewish Fund for Abortion Access, along with local abortion funds in anticipation of the Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision. The congregation raised $9,700 for the Fund.
  • Mara Jill Herman in New York organized the “Ruth Sent Us: A Benefit For Reproductive Justice” concert in honor of the late Jewish reproductive rights advocate, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, raising $3,000 for NCJW’s Fund. 
  • An LA Friendraiser, which was started during the pandemic by a group of friends working to support causes they believe in, organized an intergenerational effort that raised $36,000 for the Fund – largely from small-dollar gifts from college students that ranged from as little to $18 to as much as $5,000.

To schedule an interview with the National Council of Jewish Women or a donor that contributed to the Fund, contact Jake Green, [email protected]. To speak with the National Abortion Federation, contact [email protected]

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National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), is the oldest Jewish feminist civil rights organization working for equity and justice for women, children, and families in the United States and Israel. Through the efforts of our 210,000 grassroots advocates and 50 local sections, NCJW combines education, direct service, and advocacy to affect lasting social change at the local, state, and national levels. We approach our work through the intersections of gender, economic, and racial justice to center those most impacted in a uniquely Jewish way. Learn more at NCJW.org, and on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

The National Abortion Federation is the nation’s leading professional association of abortion providers. NAF represents hundreds of providers and independent clinics across the country that are on the front lines of helping people access abortion care. NAF helps its members provide abortion care to any patient who needs it by offering security, training, and community support. They also operate the National Abortion Hotline, the largest national, multi-lingual abortion hotline in the U.S. Following the overturning of Roe, the National Abortion Hotline has become a critical tool for people seeking abortion care to get information and financial support. Learn more at prochoice.org, and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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