US Jews donate $25 million to Taglit program

Wednesday, February 07, 2007 |  by Staff Writer
A new gift to the Taglit Birthright Israel program (BRI) will double to at least 20,000 the number of free summer trips to Israel offered by BRI this summer made possible by the Adelson Family Charitable Foundation.

The gift comes from the US’s wealthiest Jewish philanthropists Miriam and Sheldon Adelson who pledged $25 million.

Taglit Birthright Israel is funded by the government of Israel, private philanthropists and Jewish communities around the world. The $25 million gift is contingent upon other partners maintaining their annual collective commitment of $51 million.

Taglit Birthright Israel is a program that provides educational trips for Jewish youths to Israel for free if it is their first time to the Jewish state.

“The birthright Israel program is one of the best ideas our time has seen because it has the greatest potential to maintain the Jewish continuity in the face of growing assimilation,” Adelson said.

The foundation’s gift will boost BRI’s contribution to the Israeli economy. The program has already generated more than $220 million in tourism revenue and is expected to bring in $36.5 million this summer.

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