Help Our Soldiers!

Update: November 21

WE DID IT, WE DID IT, WE DID IT!!!!! This picture is the last 10 vests, picked up by my husband today (and being delivered tomorrow).

We raised every single last penny (and a few pennies more!) to cover all 30 vests. I am committing all outstanding funds (I need to run the numbers, but I think we have an “extra” $1800 – how perfect is that??) to purchase “hard” tactical gear, such as vests and helmets, for other units.

I feel like I keep saying THANK YOU all the time, but those two words seem wholly insufficient to express how grateful I feel to be a part of doing this with each and everyone one of you. ❤️ ❤️

Update: November 19

I wanted to let you know that we are SO close to our goal. We have already raised a total of $38,000!!

We have just $5,800 more to go until we can cover all 30 bullet-proof vests.

I bought the first 20 as soon as we had the cash — and they are already protecting our friend’s unit on the border with Gaza.

If you’d like to join this truly life-saving effort, please scroll to the bottom of this post and follow the directions. THANK YOU!

Update: November 15th

In the first two days of this campaign, we have already raised $14,300 from 73 people!  You’re amazing!  Plus, as I mentioned, I already had $10,000 set aside from your original donations to contribute toward the vests — which brings us to a total of $24,300.

That covers 16 vests (almost!). Even though I didn’t have quite enough to cover them all, I went ahead and purchased the first 20 of our goal of 30 vests because I wanted to get them to our guys immediately. 

That said, for us to reach our goal of donating 30 total vests (including covering the 4 that I bought on “credit”), we need to raise another $21,900. 

If you are tapped out — you know there is no one who respects someone saying “It’s not in my budget” more than me!!! — I would just ask that you share this message with your friends, family or social network. Our soldiers in the south are so grateful.  

Back at the beginning of the war — which simultaneously feels like yesterday and ten years ago — many amazingly generous KOAB readers sent donations my way, which I have been putting to use in Israel to buy supplies for soldiers and displaced civilians here in Israel.

Together, we’ve been able to donate over $20,000 of tactical uniforms, tactical gloves, eye protective gear, army boots, backpacks for a search and rescue team, portable charges, underwear and socks, watches, head lamps, food and snacks, drinks, and personal hygiene products, diapers and formula for refugees from the south.

Today, I am turning to all of you — the wider KOAB community — with a very special ask.

I am trying to purchase at least thirty bullet proof vests for a reserves (miluim) unit on the southern border, which we have been helping since October 7th.

Each vest costs 5,583.50 NIS — roughly $1500 — at the current rate of exchange. This fee covers the vest itself, ceramic bullet-proof plates for the front and back, and pouches for their tactical gear.

To buy all thirty units, we need to raise at least $35,000 (the total is actually $45,000, but I have already raised and set aside $10,000 for this purpose).

I have recently partnered with United Hatzolah to enable those of you in America to make a tax deductible donation for tactical gear such as these vests.

Hatzolah will take NOTHING off the top. There are ZERO administrative fees other than the credit card processing fee (in which case, you can add 2.5% to your donation if you wish to cover that).

Every donation helps. No matter how big or small. 

If you would like to contribute to this life-saving campaign, please click this link.  The process is a bit convoluted, so I wanted to write out these specific instructions.

Under “I want to”, you need to click on “Make a General Donation”.

In the box with a dollar sign, type in the amount you would like to donate and then in the Notes, please type “For Mara/ Benyacov”.

Type in your first and last name and your email address and then — and this is most important — under referral select “Other”. A box will pop up that says ‘Please let us know who referred you’ and you need to type KOAB. Then click Next.

A new page should open at this point that says the Shalom and Judah IDF Reserves page. Click on the orange Proceed to Donate button at the bottom of the page.

Another new page will open up. You may need to reenter the amount you wish to donate. If you prefer to be anonymous, click that box (you will still get an email for tax purposes). In the message box, write Mara/Benyacov again – just for good measure.  Finally, click on the orange MAKE A DONATION button at the bottom of the page. (Do NOT click on the orange DONATE button at the top of the page.)

Thank you so much! Tizku l’mitzvot!

If you have any questions, feel free to email me privately or leave a comment here.


  1. Heidi (Porter) Geller says

    Mara — what you shared is wonderful. I’ve donated and asked those across the Minneapolis Jewish Community to do the same. I’ve included your entry here in direct communication with friends, as well as a private Facebook group called Minnesota Mammalas, which reaches close to 3,000 women. Again, thank you Mara for bringing this opportunity forward. I hope you are safe. Sending you strength as you navigate this scary, uncertain time.

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