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November 6, 2016 9:33 am

Record $38 Million Raised at Friends of IDF LA Celebrity Gala

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IDF Sgt. Sapir Isaschar; IDF Master Sgt. Allison Bressand; Robert DeNiro; Larry King; Haim Saban; and Israeli Air Force (IAF) Cpl. Lianne Eaves at Thursday's FIDF Western Region Gala. Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/AJR Photography.

IDF Sgt. Sapir Isaschar; IDF Master Sgt. Allison Bressand; Robert DeNiro; Larry King; Haim Saban; and Israeli Air Force (IAF) Cpl. Lianne Eaves at FIDF Western Region Gala. Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/AJR Photography.

JNS.org —  The Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) raised a record $38 million at a celebrity gala Thursday in Los Angeles.

The event, held at The Beverly Hilton hotel, was chaired by businessman and media mogul Haim Saban and his wife Cheryl. A number of prominent Jewish and non-Jewish celebrities were in attendance, including Larry King, Serge Azria, Robert Kraft, Julie Bowen, Gerard Butler, Robert De Niro and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

 “We are gratified to see that the FIDF’s important mission – to provide wellbeing and educational programs for the heroic men and women of the IDF – continues to resonate with the Los Angeles community,” Saban said.

Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, founder and head of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, made the single largest contribution of the night, with a total of $6 million.

“The commitment of Israel’s soldiers to protecting their country and her citizens is truly inspiring and remarkable,” Eckstein said. “It is incumbent upon us to stand by these brave soldiers and support them in whatever way we can, so they know how deep our commitment is to their well being and their futures.”

Founded in 1981, the FIDF provides educational, cultural, recreational and social programs and facilities for Israeli soldiers, as well as supporting families of fallen warriors and wounded veterans.

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