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Heschel High School Students Unite at UJA Pro-Israel Rally

A large number of high school students attended a rally hosted by the United Jewish Appeal (UJA) on Oct. 10, three days after the war in Israel began. The rally took place at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza near the United Nations, with partners including the Anti-Defamation League and the American Zionist Movement. The line-up of speakers included New York Governor Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, New York City Attorney General Letitia James, and Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan. 

The parents of Omer Neutra, a captive, also spoke at the event. 

In a message to his son, Omer’s father looked out onto the crowd of pro-Israel supporters and said, “Omer, look at all the love and support. We love you and we’re just looking forward to bringing you home.” 

More than 12,000 people attended the rally, exceeding expectations. 

“The outpouring of support is unprecedented, not just from the Jewish community, but from New Yorkers of all backgrounds,” said Hindy Poupko, Deputy Chief Planning Officer of the UJA Federation.

“It was powerful to see the Jewish community come together and support our family in Israel,” junior Maya Seltzer said about the event. 

“Attending the rally as a school made me realize that I have a strong community of people who deeply support one another,” junior Elena Bakhchi added. 


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