Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh gives $650,000 to victims of New Zealand mosque attack |

Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh gives $650,000 to victims of New Zealand mosque attack

Madasyn Czebiniak
FILE - In this March 18, 2019, file photo, a student lights candle during a vigil to commemorate victims of March 15 shooting, outside the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. New Zealanders are debating the limits of free speech after their chief censor banned a 74-page manifesto written by a man accused of massacring 50 people at two mosques. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu, File)

The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh will give more than $650,000 for victims of the March 15 attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, that left 51 people dead.

Of that money, more than $60,000 was raised by the Tree of Life congregation, a news release from the federation said.

“We opened this emergency relief fund in solidarity with the Christchurch and local Muslim communities, after the Pittsburgh Muslim community was so helpful and supportive after the attack on our own religious institutions last year,” said Brian Eglash, chief development officer of the Jewish Federation. He was referring to the Oct. 27 attack at the Tree of Life synagogue in Squirrel Hill that killed 11 worshippers. “None of us here anticipated this incredible outpouring of support from around the world.”

According to the federation, Tree of Life chose to consolidate its Christchurch victims fund with the federation’s fund to avoid complications transferring funds between countries. The money raised by both is now in a fund at the Christchurch Foundation.

The Christchurch Foundation will be responsible for managing and distributing the funds, which will be used for counseling and other support services, education and vocational training, medical treatment and financial planning for the victims and their immediate families, the federation said.

The money also will support Muslim and Jewish programming and other connections between the Muslin and Jewish communities.

Madasyn Czebiniak is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Madasyn at 724-226-4702, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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