IFCJ and its generous donors have long supported the IDF's "lone soldiers" - those who serve Israel, but who have no family in the Holy Land. The Atlanta Jewish Times' Michael Jacobs writes about how his American city is a great supplier and supporter of these brave and selfless men and women:
Atlanta proportionally sends so many Lone Soldiers to Israel, said Maj. Gen. Meir Klifi-Amir, the CEO and national director of FIDF.
“As a major general, I salute Atlanta,” Klifi-Amir said during a visit to Atlanta on Wednesday, April 13. “For me, it’s a noble act when those kids decide to leave all that they have — their parents, their neighborhoods, their homeland, their country, their good lives — and they come to serve as part of the chain of protectors who come to protect Israel year after year.”
In this era of Islamic State and other Islamist terrorist groups, those Lone Soldiers are standing on the front lines to protect all of the free world, not just Israel, the general said. “It’s amazing. It’s something that I cannot really explain. It’s illogical. … It’s only about their hearts.”
He said those volunteer soldiers understand their own history and that of Israel, which is a tribute to their parents, who never complain about their children leaving to serve in one of the world’s most tense areas. FIDF provides support services to the soldiers and to their families.
For example, FIDF makes arrangements and pays for the Lone Soldiers to fly home for visits. An FIDF-built weekend home for Lone Soldiers offers them a place to go on leave for a bed and meals.
Working with the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, FIDF distributes 500-shekel ($130) gift cards at Passover and Rosh Hashanah to Lone Soldiers and to regular IDF troops in need — more than 13,000 soldiers in all.