Warsaw Jews donate Passover food to Ukrainian community

(JTA) — The Jewish community of Warsaw donated food to Jews celebrating Passover in western Ukraine.

The 200-pound shipment arrived in Lviv on Friday and was transported to Ivano-Frankivsk, a nearby city whose Jewish community experienced a shortage of holiday goods, Poland’s chief rabbi, Michael Schudrich, told JTA.

Since the fall of communism, the Jewish communities of Poland and Ukraine have received millions of dollars in aid from the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, or JDC, and other Jewish welfare bodies.

The financial situation of Jewish communities in Ukraine deteriorated recently due to instability that paralyzed the country’s market and was connected to a bloody revolution that resulted in the ousting of President Viktor Yanukovych.

“After decades of only receiving generosity of others, we are gratified that now we can also extend help to those who are in greater need than ourselves,” Schudrich said Sunday. “Personally this has a very special meaning to me since my grandmother, Clara Brill Schudrich, came from Ivano-Frankivsk [then Stanislow].”

Anna Chipczynska, the newly elected president of the Jewish Community of Warsaw, said the members of her community feel that “this is our obligation to help those in need, especially a Jewish community so close to Poland.”

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