Printed from ChabadNewOrleans.com

Helping with Hurricane Relief

Thursday, 1 November, 2012 - 2:40 pm

We all remember the feeling of being embraced by so many around the country and around the world as we felt our lives crumbling after Katrina. The American Jewish community really “came of age” during that time as a real player in the relief efforts. As we watch the scene unfolding in the aftermath of Sandy, we, of all people can relate to the devastation they are experiencing.

Since the affected areas are so densely populated and the number of people impacted is so great, a very broad relief effort will be required. Our colleagues at Chabad Houses along the Jersey shore, coastal NYC and the Southshore of Long Island have been working around the clock to assist people in any way possible. This is all despite their own situations of destroyed homes, Synagogues and communities.

Malkie’s brother Rabbi Yisroel Stone runs Chabad on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. He and his wife Chanie have been walking the streets giving food, rides and kind words to people in their neighborhood. They are still waiting for their power to come back (we have been giving them freezer tips), but they are “taking orders” to help people with Shabbat food. In the harder hit areas Chabad Rabbis and their wives are tracking people down and bringing them basics for survival. As of the most recent report, 30 Chabad Centers have sustained damage from the storm – some have been destroyed completely - and we are just seeing the beginning.

Chabad Headquarters in NY has reactivated a dormant fund that was launched in 2005 after Katrina. The contributions to this fund will benefit people in those hard hit communities directly via the Chabad Centers throughout the region. To contribute and follow the activities of Chabad’s Hurricane Relief efforts, please visit www.chabadneworleans.com/hurricanerelief. A special fund has also been established to help the Chabad Rabbis and their families who have been impacted – which will allow them the peace of mind to continue the work on the ground in their communities. To contribute please go to www.ShluchimFloodRelief.com.

In our Torah portion Hashem declares his love for Avraham in the following way, “For I have known him because he commands his sons and his household after him, that they should keep the way of the L-rd to perform righteousness and justice.” Tzedakah has always been an important part of our heritage and now is the time for us to step up and help others as were once helped.

Congratulations to Anna Gil upon the opening of her Art Show, Letters of Light, at Gallery Orange this Sunday.

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Mendel Rivkin

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