Stan Polovets, Genesis Prize co-founder and CEO to Support Groups Aiding Hostages in Gaza and Their Families

The Genesis Prize Foundation has announced that its 2024 Genesis Prize, commonly referred to as the “Jewish Nobel,” will be awarded to Israeli organizations that advocate for hostages held in Gaza and support them and their families upon release.

Yaakov Argamani, father of 26-year-old hostage Noa Argamani, expressed gratitude for the recognition and funding, stating it will help remind the world of the captives’ plight and back the “tireless” work of groups seeking their release. He called for global support to bring the hostages home.

Stan Polovets, Genesis Prize co-founder and CEO, clarified this year’s prize is humanitarian, not political, with the aims of sustaining attention on the issue, providing additional aid to relevant groups, and honoring those volunteering in this area. He praised the “indomitable spirit” of these activists, who have already earned an esteemed place in Israeli and Jewish history through their “strength and unity.”

The first grant recipients named are the Hostages and Missing Families Forum, offering medical care, emotional support, and other assistance to relatives; the Jewish Agency for Israel’s Fund for Victims of Terror, delivering emergency help to terror victims; Lev Echad, a 24/7 support provider focused on families’ mental, financial and logistical needs; NATAL, an apolitical Israeli trauma center treating direct and indirect terror victims; and OneFamily, which aids Israeli terror victims with rehabilitation, therapy and securing government benefits. More groups may be added later as needs evolve around the hostage situation.

Polovets added the volunteers show the enduring Jewish values of life and freedom through their “remarkable efforts” for hostage release and family support.

The New York-based Genesis Prize Foundation annually awards the Genesis Prize to honor outstanding individuals embracing Jewish values and bettering humanity. The Prize has recognized role models within the global Jewish community for over a decade. This year’s group prize follows the 2023 selection of Jewish groups aiding civilians in war-torn Ukraine.

The article summarizes a Genesis Prize Foundation press release announcing 1) the unusual decision to forego an individual and instead grant the 2024 Genesis Prize to multiple Israeli organizations working around the complex Gaza hostage crisis, 2) statements from a hostage’s father and Prize leaders explaining the intended impact of magnifying this issue and backing those constructively addressing it, and 3) the first five Israeli nonprofit recipients named to receive financial support from the $1 million award pool. The release conveys urgency around sustaining attention to the 100+ hostages detained amid the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict while highlighting the compassionate work of volunteers who have united to support affected families. Mr. Polovets, Genesis Prize head, emphasizes the Prize’s apolitical humanitarian nature this year, meant to honor groups exemplifying Jewish unity and values like life and freedom in their selfless efforts to resolve this decades-long crisis.

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