Now, that is a fair question. The short of the answer is yes. Or should I say, of course there are! The real question is, what can be done about it? Is there a way to alleviate poverty? Again, the answer is yes! There are many government and not-for-profit programs that address this question, and do indeed work towards solving the problem. Some with more success that others.
The next question is, what are the people in need to do while the problem gets solved. They still need food, clothing, medicine and housing. The basics. That is where Karmey Hesed comes in. Through Karmey Hesed’s programs, those that are in need gain relief from the stresses of poverty until it goes away.
Take the Goldstien family for example. In some ways a typical Israeli family, in other ways, not. There are 5 school age kids at home. The father works at a normal Israeli job, making a normal Israeli salary. The mother works as well. Also earning a typical salary in Israel.
The problem is, its not enough. Between the 2 parents, and even if you include the now reduced government child allowance, there is just not enough to go around. Not only are there seasons where new clothes for the growing children in out of the question, but there are many days, if not weeks, where there is not enough food. Let alone medicines when needed.
Karmey Hesed does its best to help these families. That of course depends on you. Your regular donations to this critical cause are what make it happen.
So please! Open your hearts and click here to donate now, so that those in need can survive until G-d willing poverty finally ends!
I am sitting in a cafe near the entrance to the Jerusalem Foreign Media Center. I just overheard one of the reporters say that he has never seen such a massive buildup around the Gaza Strip as what he saw yesterday. The initial news last week reported that the army had asked for authorization to call up 30,000 reservists. “Back then” they said we would likely get 10,000, the same number called up during Operation Cast Lead four years ago. This morning’s numbers are now at 75,000!
I am not a member of any government body. Nor do I write here to question what the government, and certainly not the IDF is doing (though we are certainly allowed to and expected to question the government). I just have a small yet important observation.
If we can mobilize so many, and spend so much (I do not question either the spending nor the numbers) in so short a time. certainly we can find the wherewithal to mobilize against poverty.
Sometimes in life we come across things that aren’t exactly the way we would like them to be. We wake up in the morning, having our day planned, and then all of a sudden “life” hits us. We plan on picking up the dry cleaning at a certain hour only to find out that it will not be ready until the next day. We call our spouse and are blindsided by an onslaught of “questions” that sound more like an interrogation than a search for “understanding”. Or, we planned our monthly budget only to find out that a not so minor repair will be needed at home which blows the budget. Or G-d forbid we receive news of an illness or tragedy in the family.
The question is, how do we look at these things? Should we take them as a bullet to the chest? Or can we take them somehow in some more positive light?
The answer quite simply, and as I mentioned above, is just a YES! That is, we can of course say NO to the circumstance, and either way we will feel pain. We will feel the pain as we fight our emotions, and engage the situation. And we will feel the pain even if we accept the situation (by saying Yes). But, when we say “no” we are trying to fight the reality that just cannot be changed. When we say yes we are in essence accepting the reality, albeit with the pain that goes along with it, but by saying yes we are now empowered to do something about it. That something may well include a plan and the ability to change the reality were presented with. Or, it will be simply to accept that reality and find ways to positively cope with the things we did not plan on and would rather do without. One comes from a point of being a victim, the other of being a creator, a person with power.
So just say yes to life and feel the relief that can bring along with the inspiration.
This perhaps is THE key ingredient to getting poverty “solved” once and for all. On the “poor person’s” side, they must say “Yes” to life’s challenges and work hard to overcome and better their situation.
On the philanthropist’s side, they must say “Yes” to the opportunities to help their fellow man.
On Society’s side, we must all say “Yes” to solving humanities greatest issues.
Posted by admin under Child Poverty, Children, Crime, Disposable Income, Divorce, Getting By In Israel, Green Charity, Perspective, Poverty in Israel, Self Improvement, Social Justice, Solutions to Poverty, Terrorism and Poverty, Torah, Tzedakah, Uncategorized, Unemployment, What can "I" do, What can THEY do, World Poverty
Posted by admin under Child Poverty, Children, Disposable Income, Getting By In Israel, Perspective, Poverty in Israel, Self Improvement, Social Justice, Solutions to Poverty, Tzedakah, What can "I" do, What can THEY do
The Brookings Institution came out out with a study a while back that suggests that its “easy” to get out of, or at least, avoid, poverty. Their suggestions might make sense in the USA, or other developed coutries where the concept of a “Disposable Income” exists. However, in a place like Israel, that is just not the case. Here is their article:
We’re a nation of bootstraps. Pull hard enough and you can pull yourself from rags to riches.
Or so we like to think. New research suggests we’re not as strapping as we might think when it comes to economic mobility.
New research from the Brookings Institution shows that economic mobility – the chance a child born into a poor family has to escape poverty – isn’t as robust as we might think.
If you’re born into a middle-class family, there’s a 76 percent chance you’ll end up middle class or even wealthier. Born into a poor family? Only a 35 percent chance. More here.
On Sukkot, we are instructed to “live in booths seven days…in order that future generations may know that [G-D] brought them out of the land of Egypt” (Leviticus 23:42-43). The Sukkah reminds us of the Israelites’ temporary dwellings during their forty years wandering in the desert. The Sukkah is a symbol of the protection G-D granted us during that transient period when we were instructed to “thrive and increase and be able to possess the land that the Eternal promised on oath to [our] fathers” (Deuteronomy 8:1). Sukkot is also known as Chag Ha’asif (the Holiday of Gathering). The Torah recognizes this time of year as one during which food was bountiful and the earth full of blessings (Deuteronomy 16:13, 15 and Leviticus 23:39).
G-D’s directions to thrive and increase must not have been easy for a people wandering through the desert. Even with our more sedentary lifestyle, they remain challenging for us. Especially in a time of economic crisis, how do we ensure that food, if not bountiful for all, is at least accessible to all? How do we best fulfill G-D’s commandments to care for our children so they may grow into healthy and productive adults?
From our days wandering in the desert through present times, the Jewish people have acted on G-D’s wisdom and commands, prioritizing the protection of the most vulnerable. On this Sukkot let us be inspired by our rich tradition as a people who place great value on the sanctity and welfare of children. And let us remember that our responsibility lies beyond the mitzvah of welcoming into our Sukkah those who are hungry or in need of shelter. Let us also work to ensure that in our children’s generation, no one knows the ravages of hunger or the sting of poverty.
Adapted from here.
Do you inwardly cringe when you see the word “budget”? Does the sound of the word bring with it a sense of dread? I even have the nerve to put the word “discipline” into the post title. You may have thought of creating a budget for you or your family, but, never quite completed the job. There was not enough internal motivation or external push at the time, so the effort was relegated to the pile of started, but, unfinished tasks. Well, having a budget is a giant step toward building discipline into your spending.
So, Why Do I Need a Budget?
So, “Why do I need a budget?” you might ask. In the midst of a financial crisis, it’s even more important to know where your money is going. A budget is a spending plan. It allows you to see the various buckets of your income and spending grouped together in way that you can easily see if you are achieving your financial goals, or heading for trouble. Trouble hits when you are spending more than is coming in. You could be making a six-figure income, but, it’s not what you make, it’s what you are able to keep in your control that matters most. Using credit to make ends meet definitely does not help your financial stance.
Most folks know what being “broke” means…having little or no available cash, no savings, out of money, strapped, or down-and-out. The word “broke” has the connotation of being a temporary situation. That is, you’re only “broke” until your next paycheck clears the bank. If “broke” is where you are, you don’t need to stay there. Creating and sticking to a budget is a means to stop living paycheck to paycheck.
The question is: “Do you want to continue managing your money so that you are “broke” before each payday”? Or, do you want to develop a spending plan that allows you to give as the Lord instructs, to beat debt, to send your children to college, to build that retirement nest egg, or whatever goal the Lord has given you?
What Does a Budget Provide?
Here is what a budget provides:
- a sense of control over your spending;
- an organized view of income vs. expenses;
- a framework within which to operate;
- improved awareness of the flow of your money during the month; and a
- method for achieving your financial goals
My husband and I have been married for more than twenty years. I handle the household expenses. Before I started our family budget, I would experience great anticipation when I knew a payday was close at hand. Then, a few days afterward, I’d be wondering what in the world happened to our income. It was as if our dollars had evaporated. After being consistently frustrated month after month with not knowing where my family’s money was really going, I decided to change my thinking from “dread” concerning creating a workable spending plan, to avid interest and motivation. What I learned immediately was what a budget is NOT! From 10TalentWealth.com
I had the pleasure of attending a very beautiful wedding this evening. The guests were dressed in the finest. Both the bride’s ad the groom’s families were at their fines The smorgasbord was great, and the dinner even better.
THE ONLY THING that bothered me was that the father of the b=groom is someone who literally has to work 3 hours per meal served there to pay for the wedding. And that’s just for the c What about the clothes, the band, the photographer? To be honest, I do not know if this was one of those “the-bride’s-side-pays-for-the-wedding weddings, or if was a 50/50 deal. Whatever the case, I think there is something truly wrong when one side of the wedding is expected to foot such a large amount of money because the other wants a “fancy” affair.
In this particular case I personally know the family and know that he father of the groom worked untold extra hours to pay for his part. I TRULY BELIEVE that there has to be a new movement started on which weddings and other simcha expenses are kept to a realistic and more modest expenditure.. There are some chasidic groups who have started this and this is the way!
A good friend of mine, who happens to be in a lot of debt… also has a debt to Bituach Leumi (National Insurance. The debt “cropped up” as a result of his trying to come clean with all the tax authorities. Even though he hadn’t been “making a living” in the years that the debt was incurred, he was still assessed for several thousands of shekels owing.
As part of his “survival strategy”, he basically ignored this ticking time bomb so that he could pay for the basic necessities, milk, diapers, bread, and the like. The problem is of course, that as with (almost) all debt, it eventually catches up. and that it did.
In due course the child allowance payments stopped coming in. At 1800 shekels a month, for someone not-getting-by on his 10,000 pre-tax salary, that’s a lot of cash. Especially when there are 7 children, a wife, and himself to feed.
In case you were wondering, this is NOT an article complaining about the Israeli government and its policies.
Its simply an article that tries to demonstrate the close to impossible situation many Israelis live in.
Well, there are people who really do have more serious problems, health, Shalom Bayit et-al. As they say, it’s only money…
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