Wednesday, August 25, 2004

JM Chesed Stories cont.

We began a series on JM chesed a bit ago with these earlier posts. In this series, our focus is on chesed within the JM community that people aren't aware of. Many people are aware of the numerous performers who give of their time to perform for the sick and/or disabled. We're looking to highlight the areas people are not aware of.

A few more examples:

Some musicians have made themselves available to play for free or at significantly discounted rates in cases of need. One example: A divorced mother who was struggling financially needed to make a Bar Mitzvah for her twin boys. Her Rav spoke to a bandleader about the situation and he agreed to do the affair for very little money. After the bandleader was on board, the Rav recommended the band to this women. To this day, she is not aware that the bandleader and her rabbi had spoken prior to her call, and that she received a tremendously discounted rate.

Some musicians have made strong efforts to reach out to the "at-risk" kids in their communities. In one case that we know of, the bandleader hired one of them as his roadie, bringing him along on gigs and paying him for his help, even though many of those situation didn't require a roadie. I believe that the responsibilty and stability of "doing something" and the friendship and mentoring of the bandleader had a tremendous impact on stabilizing this young man's life.

Many musicians have volunteered their time to perform for free for various tzedaka events and at rallies in support of Israel. Much of the time, these contributions seem to go unnoticed.

There's more... perhaps later.