Both of us were raised in predominately Jewish neighborhoods of meager financial means in the City of New York. With little more that was necessary to sustain their families, our parents considered charity as a necessary requirement of their lives. We can remember our parents wrapping two pennies in paper to give to a poor individual.

Our families came from committed Jewish ancestors of Eastern Europe, where the “shtetles” of the countryside provided a somewhat safe haven for the practice of their Jewish customs and beliefs. In the relative affluence of our lives in Southern California we tend to live more as individuals, tending to lose the integration that was previously provided by the “shtetle”. Whereas our new way of life provides a host of benefits, a more integrated Jewish community offers greater strategic and political strength. It is in this way that we see the value of the Jewish Community Organizations; providing the multiplying advantage of the individual Jew.

Fortunately, our great country has been very good to us, and we consider it incumbent on us to give back to the Community to help those less fortunate, and to smooth the way for those coming after us.