We closed 5777 with great sadness as hurricanes wreaked havoc in Texas, Florida, the Caribbean and Puerto Rico and, as we ushered in 5778, an earthquake shook Mexico. It is times like these that we draw together to help those in need. Helping others is founded in our basic values of tikkun olam, repairing the world, and it is times like these that I am especially proud to be part of a network of 151 Federations throughout North America that has proven itself time-and-time again in responding to crises.
When Jews are trapped in conflict zones in Ukraine, Federation is there delivering food, medicine and aid. When Jews wish to escape persecution in France and Ethiopia, Federation assists with making aliyah (moving to Israel) and assimilating into a new country and way of life. When wildfires raged and bombs rained on Israel, Federation was there providing for immediate needs, shelter and counseling. When the hurricanes struck Texas and Florida, Federation was there with volunteers and aid.
We don’t do it alone. It is our generous donors and our local and global partners who make this work possible. Together, we are the net holding these vulnerable neighbors in gentle, caring hands. Together, we strengthen each other and live the ethos of tzedakah, justice and responsibility.
We cannot say thank you enough to our generous donors and our remarkable volunteers who give of their time, wisdom and treasure. They are the reason Federation matters.
Marty Haberer is the executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix.