Robes and slippers, peanut butter, oatmeal, cat foodstuff — these are not typical reward goods, but for people and creatures in dire circumstances, they could be the very best Chanukah offers possible.
And it is simple for Rockland County inhabitants to give these kinds of presents this 12 months, by way of the Jewish Federation & Basis of Rockland County’s “Be a Mitzvah” marketing campaign benefiting the Middle for Protection & Adjust, the Rockland Jewish Spouse and children Service’s Rhoda Bloom Kosher Food items Pantry, and the Hello-Tor Animal Care Heart.
Men and women can fall off things or monetary donations at the Jewish Group Campus in West Nyack, or merely click and obtain merchandise for immediate delivery to the receiver company making use of designated purchasing lists set up for the campaign, as they are on Amazon.
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The concept originated with Gary Siepser, the CEO of the Jewish Federation & Basis of Rockland County.
“From my chair, I see a broad spectrum of wants and problems, and on this getaway of gentle and pleasure we wanted to keep in mind all those who may possibly need to have some assistance,” Mr. Siepser mentioned. “This is what Jewish federations and communities are for.”
In his mind’s eye, he saw people lights their menorahs and offering the small children — and/or grandchildren — an possibility to do extra than get.
“I imagined, what could be a a lot more significant lesson that although we are having our treats and presents, let’s give some in-variety presents. A thing quite tangible as a educating second.”
He and his team zeroed in on three companies whose budgets and capacities have been sorely stretched by the covid crisis.
“The kosher food items pantry is element of our ordinary orbit of beneficiaries, and we’ve been doing the job with them due to the fact the first 7 days of the pandemic to enable with fundraising,” Mr. Siepser stated.
Indeed, Rockland Jewish Loved ones Service’s CEO, Maria Dowling, claimed, “When the pandemic began, we started serving about 250 families each individual two weeks. Pre-covid, we were being serving below 200 households per thirty day period. The federation is serving to us by addressing the quite substantial difficulty of hunger in this county, that has only intensified because of to the pandemic. We are so grateful to them for bringing interest to the quite actual situation of meals insecurity in our group.”
The kosher goods that community families want the most contain canned tuna, peanut butter, nourishing soups, beans, oatmeal, and pasta.
Mr. Siepser realized that if folks are owning issue placing meals on the table, pet owners are having difficulty holding their canine and cats fed. Reaching out to Hi Tor’s board president, Debbie DiBernardo, he acquired that the animal shelter is caring for additional four-legged good friends than at any time, some that people today dropped off and other people that men and women abandoned. The greatest require listed here is cat food items, and appropriately the Amazon shopping checklist for Hi-Tor involves three sorts of Purina cat chow.
Ms. DiBernardo reported the shelter now cares for about 150 cats, as perfectly as dogs and rabbits.
“They by no means quit coming in,” she explained. “In November by yourself, we took in 57 cats. The expense for foodstuff and litter and housing the cats is pretty higher, and there is not much fundraising going on right now, so just about anything to offset individuals fees will assist. The far more food that is donated the significantly less we have to get and the more we can commit on medical and other requires.”
Ms. DiBernardo noted that Hi-Tor soon will mark its 50th 12 months. “For those people 50 decades it is been the local community that supported us, and when the federation offered to include us in this initiative, I was delighted to know there are other companies hunting to aid homeless animals. It was a excellent, unexpected charitable gesture.”
“There is a Jewish tradition of exhibiting compassion to animals that function for us or are our companions,” Mr. Siepser explained. “And particularly from the standpoint of young children, this I a little something that resonates and teaches compassion for all residing factors.”
Not only has hunger improved amongst all residing things through the pandemic nationally and locally, but so has domestic violence.
“The Center for Basic safety & Change is Rockland County’s official center for working with victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking,” Mr. Siepser stated. “The JFS operates carefully with them now as we have over the a long time.”
The center’s would like listing involves winter clothing — sweatshirts and sweatpants, hats, robes, and slippers — as perfectly as these kinds of consumables as diapers and wipes.
Danielle Watson of the Centre for Basic safety & Improve explained the facility is housing 10 men and women. That’s much less than prior to covid, in reaction to New York State regulations prohibiting more than a person loved ones from sharing a place.
“By masking some of the basic fees, the federation is letting us to reallocate resources to support with customer crisis needs for other non-residential victims and survivors,” she said.
“Right now we provide more than 300 men and women a thirty day period on normal. Without having the assistance and help of the community, we could not offer the solutions and consumer support that we do. We are appreciative of the generosity and aid delivered by the community and the federation.”
Mr. Siepser said he is happy to provide the opportunity for any one to donate these kinds of things from the ease and comfort and security of house. “My staff pointed out that people today are not nervous to go to shops all through the pandemic, and there is a properly great mechanism to do this on Amazon,” he stated.
The 3 beneficiary organizations created Amazon shopping lists that perform like a wedding day registry. “If you currently have an Amazon account, you don’t have to enter any supplemental data. You just click and you’re finished,” Mr. Siepser explained.
Group rabbis are assisting to get the term out by advertising and marketing Be a Mitzvah by means of their congregations. Information and facts and links are readily available at jewishrockland.org/be-a-mitzvah.
“The campaign will go via the 7 days of Chanukah and for a whilst afterward, so actually any time in December folks will be welcome to make presents,” Mr. Siepser reported.