15 August 2019

In light of recent statements circulated by the CSO, one of our beneficiaries, we would like to clarify the following:

All communal organisations have undergone restructuring processes. In the last 6 months half of the IUA-UCF staff and a third of the SAJBD staff have been retrenched. The current CSO retrenchments are sadly not unique to our structure. Rather these unfortunate retrenchments are indicative of the current economic times, and a poor economic climate has been further exacerbated by the passing away of some of our major donors as well as the emigration of many others. In addition the evergrowing funding needs of other Jewish institutions are placing increasing demands on the remaining donor base.

The UCF receives substantial donations in the form of scheduled debit orders. The CSO continues to be a major beneficiary of such debit orders and is expected to receive in excess of R2 million from the UCF in 2019. Any reduction in such debit orders would be harmful to all beneficiaries, including the CSO.

The debit orders are, unfortunately, insufficient to meet the needs of the various beneficiaries of the UCF and additional fundraising efforts have historically been undertaken to raise the shortfall. Over the past number of years the UCF was unable to raise the shortfall and this placed significant pressure on the beneficiaries, some of which relied exclusively on the UCF. To its credit, the CSO embarked on their own fundraising efforts which yielded good results.

In the interests of sustainability and efficiency, and after extensive discussions, it was agreed by all parties, including the CSO, to restructure the funding mechanism. A letter by Avrom Krengel, the Chairman of the IUA-UCF was sent out in January this year explaining the restructure and was agreed to by all parties – see email communication here between the IUA-UCF and CSO.

In summary, the current situation is that the existing debit orders received by the UCF are allocated to the CSO, the SAJBD and SAUJS. The CSO is fundraising independently to raise its shortfall using its fundraising infrastructure, while the SAJBD, the SAZF and SAUJS are fundraising for their shortfall using the substantially scaled back infrastructure of the IUA-UCF.

We urge our donors to continue making payments to the UCF and would like to thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely
Avrom Krengel