This afternoon, Governor Kathy Hochul visited the Boro Park Y to announce new investments to support Holocaust survivors.
“Hearing their stories was such an inspiration to me personally,” the governor shared with attendees at the Boro Park Y after visiting with Holocaust survivors. “The strength that exists right here in this room inspires me to be there for you.”
“There is no one with as much heart and as much strength as these incredible women,” Hochul said as she called for a standing ovation in honor of the women Holocaust survivors she met with earlier.
“We will continue to provide resources to places like yeshivas and synagogues – places of religious gatherings subjected to these horrible hate crimes,” the governor continued, addressing the astonishing rise in antisemitism “paralyzing our community”.
The governor announced $2.6 million in funding provided by the FY 2023 Enacted Budget to support the Holocaust Survivors Initiative. This funding, to be administered by New York State Office for the Aging, will be used to increase access to health care related services, provided by community-based organizations for those who suffered in the Holocaust.
“Survivors of the Holocaust endured tragedy beyond the imaginations of the average person – we owe them a lifetime of care and with this funding we can ensure they receive just that,” Governor Hochul said. “In New York, we will never forget and we will do everything possible to honor the memory of the millions of lives lost, and ensure survivors will always be safe, protected, and supported. Today we are reaffirming our commitment to supporting survivors as is our duty, and this funding will serve to widen access to services and lift them out of poverty.”
The governor also brought attention to the nearly $16 million in grants awarded by NYS in mid-April to strengthen safety and security measures at buildings owned or operated by nonprofit organizations at risk of hate crimes or attacks because of their ideology, beliefs, or missions. A total of 205 organizations received 327 grants, which are available through the State’s Securing Communities Against Hate Crimes program and administered by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. The funding allows religious organizations like shuls and yeshivas to secure their facilities and better protect the individuals and families they serve.
Ellie Kastel, Executive Director of the Boro Park Y, addressed attendees, as did Avi Greenstein, CEO of the Boro Park Jewish Community Center.
Greenstein shared how encouraging it is for Holocaust survivors and organizations like the BPJCC and the Boro Park Y to receive a new infusion of financial support. Additionally, having the governor there, in person, made it that much more meaningful.
“I want to say thank you for the incredible partnerships we have with the State,” Greenstein said. “The community-based organizations have a distinct advantage in that we work together, and it’s so incredible that we can partner to pool our resources and our strength – power by numbers. All of this is a collective effort to make a difference.”
“Holocaust Survivors are the most inspirational people we know in the world today,” Avi Greenstein shared with Yid Info. “We thank the governor for her generous support, allowing the BPJCC and other organizations to assist and dignify Holocaust survivors. It is our collective responsibility to show our love and support for these precious individuals while we can, given how brutally they were deprived of this as children.”