The JUF/Jewish Federation mission is to serve as the central communal organization of the metropolitan Chicago Jewish community. The Federation and Jewish United Fund are dedicated to the survival and welfare of the Jewish people and to the benefit and progress of humanity. They are committed to providing the means, resources, and planning to address needs while fulfilling the highest Jewish principles and ideals of our tradition. The Jewish Federation and Jewish United Fund are committed to the preservation, enrichment, and continuity of the Jewish people, and to expressing our community’s deeply shared concerns regarding Jewish life in the Chicago area, North America, Israel and throughout the world. The JUF/Jewish Federation has a responsibility to participate in the wider arena of general community needs and problem solving.
Our History - South Suburbs
Jews have lived in the southern suburbs since the turn of the century. After WW II, increased Jewish migration to the area was stimulated by the creation of Park Forest. Twenty-five years later, in the mid-1970’s, another migration occurred when Jews relocated from the south side of Chicago to the contiguous communities of Park Forest, Olympia Fields, Hazel Crest, Homewood, Flossmoor and Glenwood, areas in which the largest concentration of Jews now live. In 1995, as a result of a community-wide Priority Study, the Jewish Federation restructured the delivery of its services to better meet the needs of the south suburban Jewish community. A full-time coordinator provides referral services, works with the many Jewish agencies and organizations in the area to assess needs and coordinate services, and interfaces with the social service network in the south suburbs to secure services for the Jewish community.