June 6, 2012 3:40 pm at 3:40 pm #603694
I certainly don’t mean to offend anyone, but I deeply question the two infertility organizations (Bonei Olam and A T.I.M.E.) as being deserving of our Tzedaka contributions.
I can’t understand why we have the need for organizations to collect money for infertility treatments. Is this really a worthy Tzedaka undertaking? If a couple is having difficulty in this area and have the need to have a child, why is it incumbent on the Tzibbur to help pay for their treatments, insurance, etc.? If I decide I’d like to have a pool installed in my house, lehavdil, do I also merit the Tzibbur’s consideration? Just because a couple decides they’d like to have something, albeit a neshama in Klal Yisroel is as important as anything, do I have the obligation to help with their expenses?
Please don’t tell me I’m being insensitive, just curious as to what determines a worthy Tzedaka organization.
May all of these couples’ Tefillos be answered.June 10, 2012 7:49 am at 7:49 am #883783
If a couple wants to send their kid to a yeshiva day school but can’t afford full tuition they give the kid a scholarship and then ask me me contribute to the scholarship campaign. Why should it be my (and the tzibur’s) responsibility to pay for this kid’s schooling. It is obviously a very nice mitzvah to teach a kid Torah but if the parents can’t afford it, why should I have to pay?June 10, 2012 8:18 am at 8:18 am #883784
Because these two organizations are trying to help couples fulfill a mitzvah.
HaQer has a good point, and it can be taken further almost ad infinitum.
People who can’t afford a real Shabbos could technically buy a few whole loaves of bread, make kiddush and hamotzi on them, and they’ve fulfilled the mitzvah of seudos on Shabbos. Does that mean that organizations trying to give needy families a real Shabbos aren’t worthy of our donations?
The same thing goes for medical relief organizations. Not everything they do is pikuach nefesh. Should we say, hey, if these people can’t afford it, why should we have to pay for their medical needs?
Couples can get married without having a traditional wedding. All you need is a chosson, kallah, two eidim and a mesader kiddushin. Just because they’ve decided that they want to have a semblance of a real wedding with music, a seudah and dancing, does that mean the tzibbur has to pay for it?
I would like to honor your request about not telling you that you’re being insensitive. I think I would be able to, if not for your comment about the pool, the requisite “lehavdil” notwithstanding.
Perhaps you are not yet married, or, if you are, you have never undergone the yissurim of fertility/secondary infertility, and perhaps you don’t even know anyone who has. It would seem to me that, if you had any inkling of the excruciating pain these couples go through, you would never have been able to use installing a pool as a legitimate mashal.
If you personally have a question about these organizations, the best thing to do would be to ask your personal Rav if you should donate.June 10, 2012 8:57 am at 8:57 am #883785
The Frumguy: I’m assuming you have no idea what these couples go through. If you did, you wouldn’t question whether or not they deserve our tzedaka. If someone is suffering, I want to help.
Whether you personally donate is your decision. But why question whether they are deserving of donations?
And why shouldn’t I tell you that you’re being insensitive?June 10, 2012 11:55 am at 11:55 am #883787
Simple answer: It isn’t “INCUMBENT” on anyone to donate to any organization/tzedakah. The only contributions that are every required are (1) on Purim, l’chol posheit yado, (2) obligations that you contractually agree to (shul membership, school tuition, ect.), and (3)in the time when we had organized Kehillos, you were halachicly bound to pay taxes to the kehillah to maintain local schools, shuls, mikvaos, and tzedakah institutions.
No one is obligated to donate to infertility organizations, school tuition funds, tomchei shabbos, or any other worthy tzedakah. The minhag is to set aside 10-20% of your net income for tzedakah, but you have full discretion about where you wish to give that money. Give it to whichever organizations you feel are most deserving of the help.
Of course, you should keep in mind that the halacha does set a list of priorities for distributing your available tzedakah money (priorities, which unfortunately many people seem to ignore to the detriment of local genuinely poor people and local institutions and to the benefit of more “flashy” tzedakos).June 10, 2012 11:59 am at 11:59 am #883788
The reality is IVF treatements are expensive, I belive around $15,000 a try and they are only about 20% successful.
We could easily be spending $60K or more per kid.
While its a great thing for this for more kids funds are not unlimitted
Lets say we pay for 1000 treatments that 15 Million dollar, that 15 million dollars not going to some other Tzedkah that might also be worth and have a much greater success rate.
Would you be in favor of IVF treatments if the money went in to instead of Tomche Shabbos. Or what if a Yeshiva was forced to kicked out a kid because the parents couldnt pay and the yeshiva couldnt afford to keep him.
In a world of unlimmited funds this would be a great thing, but this is not the caseJune 10, 2012 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm #883789
You’re being insensitive. If you were merely being curious, you would ask a posek, not the CR.
And please don’t tell everyone what not to do.June 10, 2012 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm #883790
Couples trying to conceive a child go through alot of stress.
The treatments and medications needed are extremely expensive and most insurances do not pay. This adds financial stress to the couple on top of the emotional stress. Many couples who try fertility are unsucessful the first time and need multiple times,does that mean they should give up hope of having a child?.May Hashem bless these organizations and it’s donors for making it possible to bring more Jewish lives into this world.June 10, 2012 2:23 pm at 2:23 pm #883791
The little I knowParticipant
I assume you were asking your question innocently, but I found it extremely insensitive. Some commenters were on the mark in noting that we can pick and choose our tzedokos to some degree. However, your question inquired whether this was a tzedokoh or not, and that is offensive, even if you denote that you don’t intend to offend. If you understood anything about the infertile couple, their situation is one in which they lose the will to live, with every moment of every day being painful. I won’t expound on that; check out the Bonei Olam website. If tzedokoh is “Dai machsoro asher yechesar lo”, then this tzedokoh is right up there among the highest.
However, there is another matter involved here. We earn Hashem’s gifts on the merit of what we do for others, midoh kineged midoh. If we are gracious in helping others have children, we earn the merit of nachas from ours. If we get choosy about giving to others, then Hashem can treat us midoh kineged midoh and check us out before granting us anything. I am not making up this concept – it is well referenced in many seforim.June 10, 2012 2:26 pm at 2:26 pm #883793
I am always surprised when I read a post such as yours. I don’t believe you personally have to contribute to someone else’s (R”L) painful, uncomfortable, frustrating, and often disappointing fertility treatments, so that they may be makeyim the mitzvah of pru urvu, but do you REALLY want to suggest that it is not an act of chessed to have an organization help raise funds to help someone else in this sad situation? If you feel this is not a worthy tzedaka (as with ANY tzedaka towards which you feel negativity), then by all means do not contribute. I have five children bli ayin hara (with no difficulty conceiving them, B”H), and I am very privileged to take up the slack for your share of the tzedaka.
May Hashem protect you and all your family members from ever knowing such tzaar as the inability to have children.June 10, 2012 2:47 pm at 2:47 pm #883794
While it’s true that a lot of infertility treatments aren’t covered by some insurance, some states mandate coverage. You can find the information at http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/health/insurance-coverage-for-infertility-laws.aspxJune 10, 2012 2:49 pm at 2:49 pm #883795
There is no question that it is a major chesed to help people fulfill a mitzva, and to alleviate people’s suffering. Would you not consider it worthy to help a burn victim obtain plastic surgery!? The only question is as far as priorities are concerned. I assume that in reality that is what you were driving at. This is a major question, as sometimes the enormous amount of money used for one wonderful mitzva could have accomplished 100 different wonderful mitzvos. That you should ask your own halocha advisor.
As an aside, people who need IVF can save an enormous amount by travelling to the country which is the most advanced in the field – Eretz Yisroel.June 10, 2012 3:37 pm at 3:37 pm #883796
How about Chai Lifeline, do you feel it is unimportant for your tzedaka dollars to go toward kids with cancer going to summer camp? If they can’t afford it should they stay home and suffer?
Everyone needs to make their own decisions (with the help of their Rav) about what “tzedakos” to give to. I think the OP might be under the impression that “hachzakos haTorah” is the most worthy tzedaka, this would only include shuls, schools, yeshivos, and kiruv but would not inlcude things like tomchei shabbos, chai lifeline, bonei olam, hatzalah, etcJune 10, 2012 3:45 pm at 3:45 pm #883797
Random side note: The comment about the pool reminds me of a thread about whether it is proper for a young couple to buy a new house if it means in the future their kids will have to be on scholarship because of their mortgage while another couple who rented a smaller house/apartment will never be able to get a big house because they “missed the boat” by not getting into financial difficulties earlier.
We live in a generation of entitlement. Every kid is entitled to a Jewish education whether they can afford it or not, every couple is entitled to infertility treatment if they R”L need it, every kollel couple is entitled to expensive life-styles at their in-laws expense.
Everything cost money and there is limited funds within the frum community. Everyone is fighting for each others tzedaka dollars.June 10, 2012 3:53 pm at 3:53 pm #883798
Mod 42 -“I think the OP might be under the impression that “hachzakos haTorah” is the most worthy tzedaka, this would only include shuls, schools, yeshivos, and kiruv but would not inlcude things like tomchei shabbos, chai lifeline, bonei olam, hatzalah, etc”
I don’t know why you’d think that. The only “hachzakos haTorah” that comes before anything else in the S”A’s list of Tzedaka is supporting your own kids learning. (If you can afford tuition besides taking from your Maaser -then some people hold it’s Ossur to do so.) Then things to help out poor people come next. A Time & Bonei Olam would be considered Tzedaka to poor people because it is something that they are lacking -“Dey Machsoro”.June 10, 2012 4:00 pm at 4:00 pm #883799
Every kid is entitled to a Jewish education whether they can afford it or not, every couple is entitled to infertility treatment if they R”L need it, every kollel couple is entitled to expensive life-styles at their in-laws expense.
You didn’t mean to equate those, did you?June 10, 2012 7:37 pm at 7:37 pm #883800
No. I did not mean to equate those, was trying to make a point that they are different.
Health – that is my point as well, people seem to think that supporting Torah is the most important thing to do with their money. It is certainly a great thing, but whether it should be the priority over other chasadim is a big shaila.June 11, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am #883801
Many years ago I received a solicitation from an organization collecting funds to purchase Rabbeinu Tam Tefillin for those who could not afford to purchase it on their own. It bothered me that this was considered Tzedaka. After a long talk with my Rav I changed my tune. Suffice to say, there are priorities in Tzedaka and this may not ran near the top of priorities. With your tzedaka dollars, ask your Rav for the best way to distribute them according to the priorities set down in halacha.June 11, 2012 9:27 pm at 9:27 pm #883802
What about the tzeddakah organizations that pay a huge salary to the heads of the organization? Some of these “flashy’ tzeddakahs pay their top managers upwards of $200,000!June 12, 2012 7:05 am at 7:05 am #883803
Yellow123: and that’s not only where the money goes. It’s disgraceful.
I avoid them.
June 12, 2012 2:14 pm at 2:14 pm #883804
If they are paying a manager $200,000 a year who would be able to make $300,000 or more in the private sector and is responsible for bringing in millions of dollars to the organization, it may be justified to pay this person the $200,000 salary. You have to look at each Tzeduka on a case by case basis.June 12, 2012 3:56 pm at 3:56 pm #883805
I’m not sure “Dey Machsoro” applies here. Many families are “lacking” things – I return to my mashal of a swimming pool (by the way, I’m not really thinking of doing it). But if I felt lacking in cooling off during the summer, would that also be Dai Machsoro?
Tomchei Shabbos does much more than just put Challahs and food on the Shabbpos table. For some families it is pretty close to Pikuach Nefesh.
And I do know first-hand what “these couples are going through.”
I reiterate my brocha that all their Tefillos should be answered for what’s best for them.June 12, 2012 4:34 pm at 4:34 pm #883806
The Frumguy -“I’m not sure “Dey Machsoro” applies here. Many families are “lacking” things – I return to my mashal of a swimming pool (by the way, I’m not really thinking of doing it). But if I felt lacking in cooling off during the summer, would that also be Dai Machsoro?”
No, a swimming pool would not be “Dey Machsoro” as opposed to infertility treatments. OTOH, if a person can’t afford a fan or if a fan isn’t adequate to cool their home, then the lack of a fan or A.C. would be “Dey Machsoro”.
Acc. to Halacha the lack of a swimming pool can be “Dey Machsoro”, if you were accustomed to having one and you lost it due to financial downturns. Such a person can collect from Tzedaka
for his swimming pool.June 12, 2012 4:54 pm at 4:54 pm #883807
Please be aware that childlessness affects single people too i have known since a young age that it would be impossible for me to have children, i once dated a girl and we were getting along great and near the end of the second date i told her i am unable to have children her parents and the shadchan took me to the woodshed for not disclosing it earlier, also there are older singles who lets face reality may never get married and thus will be childless lets remember them as well.June 12, 2012 6:34 pm at 6:34 pm #883808
The little I knowParticipant
Certain things are so elementary and simple that explanations would be wasted. Those than understand already do. Those that can’t understand won’t be helped. I am sorry if you can’t figure out the “dai machsoro” of the infertile couple. There is not even a shred of logic in your moshol of the pool. You can cool off in numerous ways. There is no chazal that considers your inability to cool off comparable to death.
Not only do some executives of charities derive huge salaries, but so do some of the fund raisers themselves. The average meshulach can take 50% of the donation as his pay. That is why they work so hard to obtain larger donations. (Not a bad incentive.) Some drivers that shuttle meshulachim around some frum neighborhoods are also greedy and take a percentage of the till. It is true that not every dollar given to a fundraiser reaches its target; some goes to pay the collector and the expenses of the process. We can (and sometimes should) examine that to see if it is excessive.June 12, 2012 9:33 pm at 9:33 pm #883809
WOW WOW WOW WOW!!!!
AS A PERSON WHO HAS BEEN DEALING WITH INFERTILITY FOR CLOSE TO 10 YEARS NOW I AM SHOCKED THAT PEOPLE WOULD SAY THESE THINGS.
SIMPLY YOU HAVE NOT HAD AN ISSUES HAVING A CHILD OR CHILDREN.
CLOSE YOUR EYES AND THINK ABOUT; MISSCARRAGIES, DRUGS, TREATMENTS, DOCTORS, STAIRS, CRYING, ETC, ETC,ETC, ETC. OVER THE PAST 10 YEARS MY WIFE AND I HAVE BEEN THROUGH IT ALL AND B’H WITH THE SUPPORT OF BOTH ORGANIZATIONS WE HAVE 3 BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN AND FAMILY. BOTH ORGANIZATIONS ARE NOT ONLY ABOUT MONEY BUT SOMEONE WHO IS THERE FOR YOU UNLIKE PEOPLE LIKE YOURSELF WHO THINK THIS IS NOT AN ISSUE. I ONLY WISH THAT YOU AND YOUR CHILDREN NEVER HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS ISSUE!!!!!! THANKS YOU TO THE STAFF OF BOTH ORGANIZATIONS! AS FOR YOU “GROW UP” AND HAVE A HEART FOR YOUR FELLOW MAN WHO IS SUFFERING!!!!!!June 13, 2012 3:15 am at 3:15 am #883810
In a situation where dollars are finite, what worthy cause has priority is a question for your Rav, not your emotions.June 13, 2012 3:31 am at 3:31 am #883811
In a situation where dollars are finite, what worthy cause has priority is a question for your Rav, not your emotions.
Yes, but the depth of emotions involved is certainly something a rov will consider.
And, the depth of emotion involved is a good reason not to post some of the insensitive comments which were made here.June 13, 2012 3:35 am at 3:35 am #883812
The Goq – oy! I am so sorry. You made some very poignant observations.June 13, 2012 4:22 am at 4:22 am #883813
Thanks oomis i appreciate that 🙂June 13, 2012 4:57 am at 4:57 am #883814
“There is no chazal that considers your inability to cool off comparable to death.”
Chazal compare losing ones money to death as well. If someone who used to afford a swimming pool now can’t, we are mechuyav to give him tzedaka. That is “day machsoro”
“Not only do some executives of charities derive huge salaries, but so do some of the fund raisers themselves. The average meshulach can take 50% of the donation as his pay. That is why they work so hard to obtain larger donations. (Not a bad incentive.)”
If the incentive helps them raise more money why not? The meshulach needs a parnasa too.
“Some drivers that shuttle meshulachim around some frum neighborhoods are also greedy and take a percentage of the till.”
Greedy? They should do it for free? Again, being a driver is a parnasa as well. If his way of charging is by percentage so be it. Those drivers will try extra hard to get you a lot. incentives are part of business and completely muttar.
“It is true that not every dollar given to a fundraiser reaches its target; some goes to pay the collector and the expenses of the process.”
Expenses are part of life. If a Yeshivas Lilmod Ul’lamed sends out a meshulach to collect for them, what is he collecting for? For the yeshiva’s expenses! Fundraising expenses are part of a tzedakas expenses just like their electricity bill. Obviously it should be done with seichel and not be excessive as you said, but when done correctly, the more you spend the more you get back.
Side note, I know of some people who will davka not give to a meshulach/fundraiser but will take note of the organization and give separately so as not to cost them the percentage that goes to the fundraiser. I think this might actually be a chashash gezel from the fundraiser who put in the work to get you to donate and doesn’t get his cut because you are circumventing him.June 13, 2012 1:52 pm at 1:52 pm #883815
Very good point, 42. I’ve heard of some people who feel in charge, that take the Oni to task for having hired a driver.
If you really feel that bad, give him a normal donation now and mail him even more. Are the graphic designers greedy, as well? What about the printer?
But I can be Dan Lkaf Zchus those that aren’t. It just hit them wrong. They weren’t expecting and weren’t aware that these people get paid.June 13, 2012 3:30 pm at 3:30 pm #883816
HaLeiVi -“But I can be Dan Lkaf Zchus those that aren’t. It just hit them wrong. They weren’t expecting and weren’t aware that these people get paid.”
This isn’t right. The fact that they are living in their own little dream world is Not being Dan L’caf Zecus. Maybe you can find a different reason. People should know times change. I know here in Lakewood, once upon a time there used to be a guy who volunteered to take the collectors around. Nowadays, since Lakewood has become a hot spot for collectors, it’s a full time job. Noone spends their whole day in Chessed without compensation.
And as a side point, some people think that if they have certain Tzoros they can spend their life focusing on themselves. E/o is Mechuyav in Chessed, no matter what your situation is. Even a Choleh who Rachmona Litzan is dying can show Hakoras Hatov to his/her’s caretakers.June 13, 2012 6:39 pm at 6:39 pm #883817
Perhaps we are being too harsh on Frumguy. You may not share his opinion, but his question reminds me of a conversation I had with someone recently.
This person expressed the same sentiment as Frumguy and like the rest of you I was horrified at his/her insensitivity. How could anyone be so callous to the pain of childless couples? But then he/she clarified and explained…
In a world where there are so many orphaned, abandoned and broken yiddishe neshamos who need warm loving homes, why are we pouring public funds into excruciating medical treatments to create new children? There are so many already on this earth who could benefit from loving yiddishe parents. There is more than one way to have children.
Just something to think about.
And may Hashem bentch all couples with healthy, beautiful children.June 13, 2012 8:31 pm at 8:31 pm #883818
I don’t get this whole thread.
As Jews who follow the Torah, we have a Shulchan Aruch that tells us what our priorities are for Tzedaka. Everyone should be following those priorities. The answer for the OP (and everyone else in the thread) is ask your LOR.
I feel for everyone without children, and I ask Hashem that they should be able to do so (both for physical and shidduch related issues). However, my feelings do not absolve me from following Shulchan Aruch. THey should not absolve you either.June 13, 2012 9:33 pm at 9:33 pm #883819
K’shmo, the fact that there are parentless children, does not mitigate the pain of people who desperately want to have children from their own bodies. A woman, in paerticular goes through a terrible nisayon when she has trouble in conceiving. You have no idea what it msut be like for her to go through month after month of Mikvah attendance, with the knowledge that she is infertile.
Yes, you are right, there are many kids who could benefit from loving homes, and I urge people who know they definitely CANNOT have children with their DNA (or those who have borne children but want to adopt), to offer loving homes to those kids. The mitzvah of pru urvu is still incumbent on us, and we should help people to be mekayeim it when we can.June 13, 2012 9:52 pm at 9:52 pm #883820
“Yes, but the depth of emotions involved is certainly something a rov will consider.
And, the depth of emotion involved is a good reason not to post some of the insensitive comments which were made here.”
As true as the second statement is, it does not make the first one correct. The Shulchan Aruch has clearly defined halachos regarding the criteria for priorities in tzedaka. Emotionally charged is not one of them.June 13, 2012 9:56 pm at 9:56 pm #883821
“Side note, I know of some people who will davka not give to a meshulach/fundraiser but will take note of the organization and give separately so as not to cost them the percentage that goes to the fundraiser.”
Isn’t there a story with the Netziv and a Gvir who gave a smaller donation once the Netziv started going around with a horse and carriage? The Gvirs reasoning was that he didnt want any part of his donation to the Yeshiva to be spent on horse feed. I dont remember what the Netziv answered him, anyone?June 14, 2012 12:33 am at 12:33 am #883822
Would raising children as if they were ones own not fulfill the mitzva of having children if it is clear that one cannot conceive naturally? (and that means without fertility treatments)
Must a child be born from ones own body for it to be considered ones own?June 14, 2012 1:49 am at 1:49 am #883823
apushatayid: This is absolutely incorrect, the halacha is that if a rich man becomes poor you are obligated to give him tzedakah so he can resume the standard of living he once had including slaves to run before his chariot. Mah nomar umah nedaber in this case. In the days of the shulchan aruch it was not possible to treat these things medically, now it is.June 14, 2012 2:58 am at 2:58 am #883824
If anyone has info about Jewish children available for adoption, please ask the mods to contact me. I know people who are DESPERATE to adopt. Thank you.June 14, 2012 3:05 am at 3:05 am #883825
Pcoz. Everything you say is correct. However, I was talking about what takes precedence. Emotionally charged is not one of the criteria mentioned in the S’A.June 14, 2012 4:19 am at 4:19 am #883827
Would raising children as if they were ones own not fulfill the mitzva of having children if it is clear that one cannot conceive naturally? (and that means without fertility treatments)
Must a child be born from ones own body for it to be considered ones own? “
You are asking two separate and very disparate questions. I will deal with the second one first. OF COURSE a child who is adopted and loved by a non-biological parent, is that person’s child. There are parents by nature and there are also parents solely by nurture, and they are every bit as choshuv as the other.
If the mitzvah of pru urvu which is incumbent on all men, is met by raising adopted children, then I defer to your greater knowledge. But my logic (and yes, it may be faulty and also ignorant of the halacha)tells me that just as a Yisroel cannot be a Kohein, no matter how much he wants to be a Kohein, no matter how truly ehrliche and sincere he is in his avodas Hashem, he nonetheless cannot fulfill the mitzvos of a Kohein unless he in fact is a Kohein.
If a man has not sired children, he has not been fruitful and multiplied. He may have a host of other mitzvos and earn incredible s’char mitzvah in raising a child he did not sire, but he and his wife have noentheless not brought children into the world, and there is a sadness in that. I think adoptive parents are awesome baalei chessed. But I doubt that any one of them would not do just about anything to be able to give birth to a healthy child.June 14, 2012 4:31 am at 4:31 am #883828
I dont remember what the Netziv answered him, anyone?
Betzalel’s chochma was in knowing how to assign contributors’ donations to items of higher kedusha according to purity of intent. So too, if the donor to the yeshiva has a pure intent, the money will go directly to support Torah. Someone who donated with less commendable intent will have the z’chus of paying for the horse and wagon.
Emotionally charged is not one of the criteria mentioned in the S’A.
I think pcoz was arguing, very reasonably, that it is.
If donating for a formerly wealthy man to have servants run before a chariot is valid tzeddakah, it’s reasonable to assume that the reason is because of the emotion of shame that he would otherwise feel. It’s obviously not a physical need; it would be a waste of tzibur gelt to pay for the same thing for someone without that emotional need.
It’s clear to me that the emotional needs of a childless couple are very much a factor in determining priority for tzeddakah money to help them bear a child.
May Hashem bring simchah, speedily, to all, especially those who are suffering so terribly.June 14, 2012 4:32 am at 4:32 am #883829
Beautifully said.June 14, 2012 10:28 am at 10:28 am #883830
1. Thanks for the Netziv.
2. Again, I don’t disagree with anything PCOZ wrote or that you added, however, your arguments are why “emotions” make for a valid or worthy tzedaka. I was referring to PRIORITIES. If you have a single dollar to give to tzedaka, is “emotionally charged situation” one of the criteria mentioned in halacha in the list of priorities?June 14, 2012 1:20 pm at 1:20 pm #883831
I have gone through infertility, and you can’t imagine the pain that comes along with it. I am tremendously grateful to Bonei Olam for all the help they gave both me and my wife. Besides for the money, they are always there if you just need to talk to someone. I don’t even know how many hours I spent on the phone with someone from Bonei Olam. At one point, the doctor told us to look into adoption, because he decided he couldn’t help us anymore – he’d tried everything he could, and things just weren’t working as they should.
So what did Bonei Olam tell us? “There are three partners in making a baby – two parents, and Hashem. Not a doctor. The doctor is merely a shaliach of Hashem. Obviously, this is not the right shaliach. We’ll just look for the right one!” And so it was. They helped us look for the right doctor for us.
There is a Chinese Auction tonight in Brooklyn for Bonei Olam. You can order tickets through their website (just don’t put in for the same prizes that I did!) I encourage everyone to support this amazing organization.
One last thing. Yes, there are other tzedakos out there. You can argue that some are more worthy of support. How would you feel if you, your child, your sibling, or other close relative needed help with infertility? Statistics show that one in seven couples need help having children. Many families have that many children. Just because they don’t tell you doesn’t mean they don’t need the help. Support Bonei Olam, because the family they help might be yours.June 14, 2012 2:09 pm at 2:09 pm #883832
If I may rephrase the OP question I would do so as follows.
There are many worthy organizations out there vying for our tzedaka dollars. Be it to support almonos, yesomim, talmidei chachamim, yeshivas, mikvahs, fertility treatments, pidyon shvuyim, sick people etc… The list goes on and on.
One should ask his LOR how to best distribute his tzedaka money.
However, some of the causes mentioned above are mentioned in Shulchan Aruch while others are not.
So the question is, can one satisfy his minimum chiyuv of maaser by giving tzedaka to a cause not mentioned in S”A, such as fertility treatments?June 14, 2012 4:35 pm at 4:35 pm #883833
Fair enough. I am also unsure as to whether adoption fulfills the mitzva of pru u’rvu, but that is not the issue.
I was just adding a point to Frumguy’s sentiment, that if for whatever medical reason a couple cannot naturally fulfill the mitzva of pru u’rvu, perhaps public funds would be better used elsewhere as there are many ways a couple can build a family, regardless of their fertility status.
Of course couples who can fulfill the mitzva should, I am just wondering to what extent it is necessary to fulfill the actual mitzva of pru u’rvu, or to help others fulfill it with public funds, when it is not in a couples natural capability.June 14, 2012 5:26 pm at 5:26 pm #883834
If you have a single dollar to give to tzedaka, is “emotionally charged situation” one of the criteria mentioned in halacha in the list of priorities?
Actually, aside from pikuach nefesh, supporting Torah is a priority.
The term you use, “emotionally charged situation”, connotes a lack of real need, but the donor’s emotions have been stirred.
I am referring to the emotional needs of the recipient, which although I’m not (yet) fluent enough in hilchos tzeddakah to know how to incorporate into the prioritization of funds, should certainly play a role (based on the Gemara’s din of the chariot).
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