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Op-eds

Simply not true

  • MichaelSieff
I have a perennial problem. It’s at this time of year - just a month away from Rosh Hashanah - that my inbox starts to fill up with appeals for funds from various sources to save destitute Jewish families in our city.
by MICHAEL SIEFF | Aug 24, 2017

They claim that without their efforts a growing number of people will suffer deprivation.  

I’m here to tell you that the claim is false. No Jewish person will starve, be homeless, or suffer without healthcare as long as the Chev is here. And this is not an empty promise, but one that has been fulfilled for close to 130 years, as long as the Chev has been in existence.

Those petitions are designed to send you on an extended guilt trip, the kind that Jewish people with generous hearts are too often hoodwinked into embarking on. But they are based upon the false premise that taking care of Jews in need is not already a dedicated, focused, lifelong responsibility of the Chev. 

It’s what we do. It’s our mandate. And it’s the reason we don’t see Jewish beggars on our streets. 

With our annual budget of R280 million, the community would be hard-pressed to identify any area of Jewish need that the Chev does not respond to, be it physical, clinical, educational or psychological. Furthermore, our care spans every age group - quite literally from the cradle to the grave.

I understand that these fundraising efforts may be well-intentioned, but the message is simply not true. My sense of justice rebels against the veiled dismissal of all that the Chev does, and is.  

I’m not suggesting that we have the sole rights to chesed or that ours is the only worthy cause out there (although it’s definitely high up on any list). But when it comes to welfare, we are the one-stop address for any Jew in need of any kind of help. With your assistance we will continue to meet their requirements.  

May our partnership continue to thrive!

feedback@thechev.org.za

 

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