The Jewish Agency for Israel announced the completion of a new social housing project sitting in the heart of Tel Aviv, which will provide a home for hundreds of Israel’s needy Holocaust survivors, many of whom are in poverty.
The project was made possible thanks to Mark Wilf, who serves as chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), and the Wilf Family Foundation.
The new building was named after Wilf's father, Joseph Wilf, who along with Mark's mother were both Holocaust survivors. Wilf's commitment to his family was a major contributing factor to his dedication of the housing project.
“When I first heard about the Amigour project… I was moved right away, and I knew that this would be a very fitting tribute to my father,” Mark said at the closing event of the Jewish Agency’s Board of Governors meeting where he was honored.
Amigour is a Jewish Agency’s subsidiary that provides housing solutions for more than a million survivors and immigrant seniors in Israel.
“When it came to real estate in Israel, he [Joseph], along with his brother Harry, never accepted or ever did a project just as an investor. Every project, he wanted to do hands on, to build in the State of Israel. He was very proud of that. And we still are. So, my dad’s example, his lessons, his wisdom, his humility… [all] is a wonderful legacy for our family and inspires me and us every single day," Wilf said.
“Joseph Wilf was an irreplaceable leader and gentle giant of his generation,” said Chairman of the executive of the Jewish Agency Isaac Herzog. “He was a visionary real estate developer [and a] generous philanthropist… That is why it is so fitting that this building is named in his honor. We want to thank Mark Wilf and his entire family for their partnership and friendship in making this Amigour building a reality.”
Following in his father's altruistic footsteps, Mark Wilf helped launch the JFNA’s Holocaust Survivor Initiative, raising millions of dollars through philanthropy and a government grant to advance care for Holocaust survivors in the United States.
Moreover, throughout the coronavirus pandemic, Wilf, his wife, Jane and the Wilf Family Foundation joined the COVID emergency fund to help sustain the Jewish community. They are also among the largest financial supporters of Yad Vashem, the Holocaust memorial and research center in Israel, while also supporting many other causes and organizations.
“I have worked side by side with Mark Wilf since I began my tenure,” said JFNA president and CEO Eric Fingerhut, “and I can tell you his generosity has no bounds. The Jewish community is fortunate to have his leadership and immeasurable dedication – particularly at this time.”