The Union for Reform Judaism’s Hurricane Relief Fund has now collected nearly $464,000 for hurricane relief and has disbursed more than $100,000.
The URJ’s Congregational Network Staff has been reaching out to all congregations affected by the storm and advising congregational leaders on how to best help individual congregants and continue providing services to congregants.
The Women of Reform Judaism contributed $10,000 from the WRJ YES Fund toward Scholarships for Youth Impacted by Sandy, which aims to remove some of the financial barriers that might keep displaced teens from attending Reform Movement events when they need them most.
More than $14,000 has been designated for West End Temple in Neponsit, NY, which suffered significant damage from Hurricane Sandy. The URJ will be collecting funds on behalf of West End Temple until they have electricity and their online system is functional. The Men of Reform Judaism’s Reform on Campus grantees donated $500 in the form of Target gift cards to West End Temple.
Reform congregations all over North America are doing their part to help. Temple Beth El in Boca Raton, Florida, sent warm clothing, water, food and emergency supplies to two of the hardest hit areas in Staten Island and New Jersey. Hundreds from Temple Beth El, other congregations and individuals in the area participated in this gratifying and community-building experience. Read more about the effort in this Jewish Journal article. The staff at the URJ’s New York City office has collected more than 27 pounds of food and supplies and volunteered with NECHAMA to help out in hard-hit areas. If your congregation wants to help, please make specific arrangements and verify needs in advance to avoid duplicating efforts or sending goods that are not needed. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is our fourth update about the Reform Movement’s response to the devastating impact of Hurricane Sandy. To learn more or to read previous updates, visit the URJ’s Hurricane Relief page. You can also read about the Reform Movement’s and the larger Jewish community’s post-hurricane efforts in JTA’s recent story “Weeks after Sandy, enormity of human and economic costs are becoming clearer” and in eJewishPhilanthropy’s “The Collective Comes Through.”