A Helping Hand

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On any one night, approximately 2,638 Baltimoreans sleep in a shelter or on the street, according to 2013 point-in-time statistics from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s office. In Baltimore City, more than four out of every 1,000 residents are homeless. Of these people, two-thirds are men, and 20 percent are younger than 25. In a city where… Read More

Jewish Bmore Gives

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Whether it’s for a new iPad, the just-released Mario game, a diamond choker, a Rolex watch or a shiny new Lexus with a big red bow (if we believe what we see on TV), its seems there’s no limit to what people will shell out on holiday gifts. Americans have long lamented the commercialization of… Read More

Working For Change

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These days, it seems that everyone is starting a nonprofit. What’s the appeal? “The reason people start nonprofits is because they see a need and a void that they are passionate to fill,” says Paddy Morton, attorney with Maryland Nonprofits, an organization that serves to strengthen and educate the state’s nonprofit sector. “They’re doing public… Read More

Better To Give

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A meshulach (Jewish charity collector) visited our home late one summer night. A window was open so he knocked at the screen. Heschel, our dog, sprang to his feet, jumped through the screen and chased the visitor all the way down the block. We reveled in this victory, and Heschel earned himself extra treats that… Read More

Let Them Eat Cheerios

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This Year marks my son’s third Thanksgiving and third Chanukah. It is also the first time the holidays have coincided since 1861. The fact that both festivals are celebrations of appreciation, for our country and the miracle of lights respectively, makes it almost impossible not to reflect on the importance of giving and of instilling… Read More

On Bookshelves

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How Dalia Put A Big Yellow Comforter Inside A Tiny Blue Box And Other Wonders Of Tzedakah by Linda Heller Hard cover, 32 pages Tricycle Press “Tsadee daled Kof hay” means justice, fairness, compassion and joy. In this children’s book, perfect for children ages 3 to 7, main character Dalia teaches her inquisitive younger brother,… Read More

B’More Healthy: The Value of Giving

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We know volunteering is a mitzvah, but what some people don’t know is that it’s also good for your health. According to CarePages.com, volunteering increases one’s sense of well-being and productivity and also positively impacts cardiovascular health, immune system and cognitive functioning, and reduces symptoms of depression and anxiety. Ilene Cohen, a former travel agent,… Read More

Making Cents Together

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Tzedakah, the mitzvah of giving, is a celebrated tradition in Jewish culture. As Dr. Sherry Blumberg, 2012 Jewish Educator of the Year recommends, when teaching your children about tzedakah, let them get involved as much as possible. “Children learn best by doing and exploring through their senses,” she writes. Make giving a meaningful and enjoyable… Read More

Off With His Head

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Judith is a beautiful widow who has fascinated artists, writers, poets and composers through the centuries. The heroine of the Book of Judith, a text that was never accepted into the Jewish cannon, Judith serves the role of holy Jewish widow, of seductress and of soldier. Here is a quick rundown: Judith comes onto the… Read More

Stretching One Day’s Provisions To Eight

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A beautiful thing about many Jewish laws is that they are open to interpretation. Evolving analysis helps transform a seemingly obsolete idea into a concept that is relevant and applicable to contemporary issues. Bal tashchit is one of those laws. Its original form commands to “not destroy with wanton abandon” (particularly geared to war time),… Read More