Tzedakah has and always will be ingrained in our lives. Perhaps it’s part of our values – perhaps it’s because of where we come from. Both Earl’s and my parents are Holocaust survivors. They experienced what we could barely imagine. How could it happen? We want to ensure it never happens again. We want more for our Jewish community.
Earl and I met in law school. Our parents’ lives were focused on survival but we had more opportunity. We have had the freedom – to work hard, build successful careers, raise a family and live our Jewish lives. We can’t take that for granted.
With privilege comes responsibility. We must be there for others who are less fortunate – both locally, in Israel and wherever there is need. And we must protect and ensure the continuity of the Jewish people.
We feel very proud to be part of the Toronto Jewish community. It is such a vibrant, generous and growing community and with tremendous vision. There’s so much we can do to build for both today’s needs and for tomorrow. Our involvement as lay leaders in various programs and initiatives over the years has shown us first hand the difference that a community can make when it stands together. Still, there’s much work ahead.
How do we build on our work and keep the spirit of tzedakah and Jewish life alive? By teaching our children well and setting the example; and by building an infrastructure for future generations to build upon and carry forth our Jewish values.
I was born in Israel and only four when my family came to Canada. Toronto is home, but Israel equally shares Earl’s and my heart. We must always be there for Israel as she’s been there for us. Partnerships are key. Individually and on a community level. We must work together to protect our future.
Our message to our three amazing children, Jessica, Griffin and Cole, is this: remember your Jewish roots. Protect your Jewish future. Be who you are. Become your best – and remember to also give your best to those in need.
And to our community at large: We’re in this together. We must work together.