Meshulachim

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  • #589042

    lesschumras
    Participant

    You receive two solicitations in the mail.One is for an Israeli yeshiva and the other for a local,neighborhood yeshiva . Both have been hit hard by the economic downturn and you can only make a meaningful contribution to one of them.

    What would you do?

    #630829

    Mayan_Dvash
    Participant

    “Aniyai Irchu Kodmin”

    #630830

    feivel
    Participant

    you know the answer.

    what is your point or question really?

    #630831

    Mayan_Dvash,

    I think aniyai eretz yisroel are considered aniyai irchu

    lesschumras,

    ask your LOR.

    #630832

    Curious
    Member

    From my humble understandings, eretz yisroel (or maybe yerushalayim) also constitutes “aniyei ircha”, though I’d be inclined to think you should give to the local one. Ask your local Rabbi!

    #630833

    qwertyuiop
    Member

    ask your LOR btw i think your supposed to give the local one

    #630834

    SJSinNYC
    Member

    Well, I usually give out as I get the mailings, so it would be the one that came first.

    #630835

    squeak
    Participant

    Curious, Does “ask your local Rabbi” mean that you can ask one in Eretz Yisroel (or maybe Yerushalayim)?

    #630836

    Curious
    Member

    squeak, brilliance emanating from you again! 🙂

    I would guess to say that you can ask a Rabbi living locally or a rabbi in E”Y.

    How’s that?

    #630837

    sarah_613
    Member

    A related question…. I am single and live alone. Several times recently, meshulachim have come to my apartment when I was already dressed for bed. If there is a knock, I ask who it is, and if it is a meshulach, I say that I cannot open the door at this time. Most of the time they leave, bit sometimes they are very insistent that I open the door! This can be as late as 10pm. One pair of gentlemen continued knocking for about 15 minutes and was yelling in Yiddish and scared me. I called a (male married) neighbor who came over and spoke to the meshulachim. But was I supposed to open the door? Even when I am not dressed for bed, I still do not feel comfortable opening the door at night. Am I supposed to anyway? Thanks!

    #630838

    oomis
    Participant

    This is a hard question, because the kedusha of E”Y takes precedence. However aniyai ircha is a definite factor. I would give to both, a lesser amount to each one.

    #630839

    amichai
    Participant

    your city first.

    #630840

    Nobody
    Member

    Lesschumras you say you can only make one meaningfull donation. May I respectfully ask who are you say what is meaningful or not? 100 pennies make a dollar. 100 dollars becomes 200 and so on.

    Whatever sum you would have given to one divide and give half and half.

    In these trying times it is difficult to spread the money around but believe me every cent and dollar mounts up.

    I have collected for various causes over the years and I have always been humbled and astounded at all the quarters – yes quarters and dollar bills that are given and even posted with a full heart and add up.

    Please, don’t ever be embarrassed to send however small a sum. Having been on the collecting and distributing end of many tzedakas please believe me when I say every penny is gratfully accepted.

    #630841

    sarah_613- You are not obligated to open the door of your home at 10pm to anyone. This is outrageous to come to someones home at such an hour. I have collected in the past, and my rule of thumb was to collect between the hours of 5pm.-9pm. To try to force someone to give a contribution goes beyond the common courtesy of collecting in general. Always rely on your gut level feeling as far as letting somene into your home.

    #630842

    Ettie
    Member

    sara613-

    I am married and don’t open the door if I’m home alone. I don’t feel comfortable not knowing who’s on the other side of the door. I answer that I’m not allowed to open the door and since my voice sounds young it’s assumed that I’m babysitting and they leave.

    #630843

    intellegent
    Member

    sarah_613

    Never answer the door if there is a male at the door. I am married but do not answer the door if there is a male standing there (I have a peephole) if my husband is not home. sometimes I don’t feel good about it but it is still the right thing to do. Even if you are dressed to go out, don’t open the door.

    #630844

    I had it more than once that someone came collecting and asked to use the restroom. Now, I really dont feel comfortable letting strangers into the house, but on the other hand I know it is really uncomfortable to go around in need. What do u suggest…

    #630845

    oomis
    Participant

    “A related question…. I am single and live alone. Several times recently, meshulachim have come to my apartment when I was already dressed for bed. If there is a knock, I ask who it is, and if it is a meshulach, I say that I cannot open the door at this time. Most of the time they leave, bit sometimes they are very insistent that I open the door! This can be as late as 10pm. One pair of gentlemen continued knocking for about 15 minutes and was yelling in Yiddish and scared me. I called a (male married) neighbor who came over and spoke to the meshulachim. But was I supposed to open the door? Even when I am not dressed for bed, I still do not feel comfortable opening the door at night. Am I supposed to anyway? Thanks! “

    NO, NO, NO!!!!!! NO one has the right to be so chutzpadig as to come to anyone so late at night. And even were it not late at night, if you are a woman alone, you should not open your door. There are women who have been molested doing that. You should have told the man you were calling the police. I tell meshulachim who come in the night thatI do not open the door at night, and if they come back the next morning after 9 AM, I will give them something (in my neighborhood, they must present a teudah signed by the vaad of tzedaka, that is basically a permit for collecting in the neighborhood. This is because too many times people have been swindled by charlatans and ganovim, in one case someone was robbed by a phony collector. The vaad checks out the validitiy of the claim for need of funds, and then acts accordingly. Great system. Anyone who shows up at your door at an odd hour, is beyond belief. You have no chiyuv. If someone came knocking at my door at that hour claiming an emergency, I would offer to call 911 or hatzolah for them, but I would not open my door. We live in crazy times, unfortunately.

    #630846

    oomis
    Participant

    If someone asked to use my restroom, I would point out the Yeshivah enxt door to me which is open very late at night, and tell them to go there. I do NOT open my door to strangers at night. Remember they are invading YOUR space. You did not invite them over.

    #630847

    intellegent
    Member

    oomis1105,

    sounds like a great system! It would help the real meshulachim as well. People tend to be weary of all meshulachim because of the phony ones which is very sad for those who don’t deserve it but people are burned.

    #630848

    The problem is that I live in an apartment building, when they are going around it is not just a matter of going to a shul next door, that is why I feel so sorry saying no when asked to use the restroom. But, somehow I feel that TRUST has been abused. Pple come around looking trustworthy and are really not, they ruin it for the ones that are, and that need help, bec nowadays u just dont know who u can really trust into ur home. The most I can do is offer a drink, which many take me up on.

    #630849

    bored@work
    Participant

    they have never asked to use the restroom, but I do offer them a drink hot/cold which so far all have taken me up apon the offer… just treat them like people thats it

    #630850

    like bored@work, we always open our door and offer a drink, and sometimes a small snack and act like mentsch…however, it is very hard when the meshulachim come and demand a donation of a certain amount and they wont settle for any less (theyll start yelling and cryign and telling you all their problems) and make you feel very guilty if you cant give them what they want (over $100) . as much as we have to treat them like people when they approach us for tzeddaka, i think they have to learn how to act…it is incredibly rude to demand x amount from people who have their own family support and many other tzeddakah collectors who come asking for money. the economic crisis is hitting everyone. be happy for what you get, dont beg for more and make people feel guilty.

    and on a side note, i know a family who trains their kids that whenever a tzeddaka collector knocks on the door and the father is not home they should say “mai tatta nishta aheiim…” and absolutely not open the door. unless their is a father, or someone who can deal with them at home, the door should not be opened.

    #630851

    Joseph
    Participant

    Demanding a certain amount or more than offered is not just chutzpa, it is a sure sign of a faker.

    #630852

    on chanuka right after we lit the menorah 3 meshulachim rang the bell. the first one right away demanded $180 and was crying and screaming for more when we said $100…than wen asked if he came along with the other 2 he said no…when they left, they all got in to the same car…

    #630853

    Joseph
    Participant

    Like I said, a sure faker.

    #630854

    intellegent
    Member

    They say, “mai tatta nishta aheiim…” ?

    I guess the meshulach understands what they meant to say a/w 🙂 LOL.

    As I mentioned many times, I live in E”Y. A lot of mishulachim come to my tiny little poor looking apartment and try to get my husband to invite them in so they can talk. I don’t get it. How much do they think they’re getting out of us? By being American does that mean we are rich despite our obvious standard of living?

    #630855

    Nobody
    Member

    Someone who is genuine in their collecting will be grateful for whatever is given.

    Whilst one should strive never to refuse the giving of tzedokoh (I don’t want to get into the halachos here) at the same turn, a person genuine in their collecting may not refuse what is given to him. If the amount proffered is rebuffed one may decline to give the person anything.

    I know times are hard but most collectors are genuine and only a small minority are a bunch of crooks who spoil the name for the many good people who come collecting either for their familiy or a good cause.

    As for people coming after ten o’clock. Please remember men often come round after Maariv which can well be after 10 o’ clock. They are also charged per hour and / or by the day by their drivers and so want to cram in as much as possible during their short time in your locality with as many as can fit into one car. Therefore it is always a good idea to divide your donations so there is a spread.

    If you give over a certain amount your house is marked by the driver for future meshaluchim who will come in droves demanding a high figure.

    Sounds all a bit mercenary doesn’t it and makes you very sceptical but that’s how it goes.

    #630856

    intellegent, just curious: by “a male” do you mean ANY male, even a little boy? How about a full-grown man who is not a stranger?

    #630857

    Meshulachim need to be careful how they approach people…a crazy story…came home from megila one purim night and there were a group of bums and hooligans on the front lawn. They looked like they were trying to canvass the place to rob or otherwise up to no good. This family drove up to their home (this one) and the father got out to scare them all away. Fearful for his wife and kid’s lives, he bravely shut the car door and went to the house. He found out that they were meshluchim!!! These boys need to realize that doing that late at night, with realistic costumes especially, is inappropriate and wrong.

    #630858

    After all this talk I think it is important to mention and realize, as a side point, how hard and humiliating it must be to go around from door to door, especially those that are going for themselves. Especially, when sometimes one after the next pple dont answer their door. As much as in my building I can get as many as 5-6 Meshulachim per day/night, I try to keep in mind how lucky we are to be on the giving end…

    #630859

    intellegent
    Member

    jewishfeminist02

    Sorry, I guess I should have been more specific. I was referring to a man, somewhere from older teenager and up (even an older man). If it is your cousin, brother-in-law, or father, I would assume you should open the door (make sure it’s not a problem with yichud before letting them in of course…) I there is a six-year-old boy standing there, you should probably not feel very threatened. 🙂 Is it clear now?

    Now I’m just curious, did you really think I meant all males, or were you just trying to point out that I did not use specific enough language?

    #630860

    Phyllis
    Member

    Mrs. Beautiful, I agree with your point that it must be very hard to be the one collecting. I guess its something to keep in mind when someone knocks on ur door.

    #630861

    SJSinNYC
    Member

    My mother has a pushka with $1 bills to hand out to collectors. She gives lots of tzedaka regularly, but hates to turn others away. This was her compromise – she gives them something, but if they are a scammer, then they only got $1.

    When people complain my donation is not enough, I tell them that is all my husband allows. They understand that.

    #630862

    mrs. beautiful, thats true too. i guess we always have to look at something from both sides and think how we would feel if we were on the other side. but then again, back to the point that the meshulachim too have to remember to not be so demanding and understanding how people do have other expenses and cant give everything.

    #630863

    oomis
    Participant

    First of all, a child should be trained to NEVER say “my tateh is nisht aheim.” No one should be thinking that a child’s parent is not there. In fact, my kids were always taught to leave the door closed and say, “My parents are busy right now and can’t come to the door, could you please leave a message?”

    I don’t care HOW difficult the meshulach’s job is, in today’s very violent world NO ONE has any obligation Tzedaka or not, to open their door at night to a stranger. I am sorry if they need the restroom or are thirsty, but robbers have dressed up like chassidic-looking collectors, attacked and then tied up the entire family, robbed them blind, and left them traumatized. The message needs to get out that there is a time to collect and after that time (as far as I am concerned that is at nightfall), come back the next morning. I realize that is a problem for the meshulachim, but my family’s life comes before their lives.

    Now to relate my own nasty collector story, A meshulach came by when I just had given birth, and I finally got my baby to sleep when he rang my doorbell. I was not dressed properly to open a door, so I told him ina soft voice, as my baby was not a good sleeper when hearing people around, to please leave, that I could not open the door. He definitely heard me, because he became belligerent, WHY couldn’t I open the door???? He started pounding on the door, waking my baby, who began screaming, and refused to leave until in frustration I threatened to call the police. Another time, I opened the door and the meshulach asked for tzedaka. All I had in my wallet was $50 bill ( an anniversary present which I had received from my parents for a special anniversary year), and a few quarters. I offered the quarters to the man, he looked at me disdainfully and said, “Is that all you have? I’ll take a check.” I told him I don’t write checks to strangers, it was the quarters or nothing. He took the quarters, and then suddenly threw them back at me, turned around and left abruptly. This has happened more than once, when I didn’t give them “enough.” That is not a meshulach l’sheim Shamayim. That is a bulvan. And if you gave to one of them, then they send their friend, too, who is collecting for the same cause as they are.

    #630864

    mazal77
    Participant

    I have a problem with the phone calls. A few weeks ago, I had some organization that called 2-3 times a day. (I don’t pickup the phone all the time) When I did finally pickup and realized they were collecting, I asked them not to call me again. When I called back the number that showed on the call id, it said that the number was diconnected and no information was available. Since them I do not give any phone solicitations. If it was legitimate then, I feel I should be able to reach this organization. I wanted to let them know that calling 3 times a day was very excessive.

    #630865

    intellegent
    Member

    There is a weird trend in E”Y that they ask for a credit card number? do people actually give their credit card number to someone calling from an organization? If I call a bunch of numbers and say I’m calling from Yad Chana Esther (made up name) they will give me their credit card number? Yay! All I have to do is buy one of those machines and i’m rich!

    #630866

    oomis
    Participant

    Anyone who gives out their credit card number to any stranger, is begiing for identity theft, along with their bank account.

    #630867

    intellegent, I didn’t think you really meant all males, but I thought it was strange that you said “never open the door for any male” when I would have thought to write “never open the door for a strange man” or even just “never open the door for a man”. I just wanted to clarify to make sure you meant what I thought you meant.

    #630868

    RoshYeshivah
    Member

    The collecters that send others to the ppl that gave them nicely are being oiver a mefurish gemara in elu metzios That a person shouldn’t say my host treated me exceptionally because in result others will burden themselves onto that host and it comes out he returned his host a bad for a good!

    #630869

    qwertyuiop
    Member

    meshulachim come to my door once every few weeks so i give depending on what they are collecting for

    #630870

    Phyllis
    Member

    RoshYeshivah, Actually, this exact example is stated in Sefer CHofetz Chaim on shmirahs Halashon. ( under the topic of “not only is derogatory considered harmful)

    #630871

    Ettie
    Member

    There are so comments already on this subject but I wanted to add one more. This is related to I think what Mazal said regarding phone solicitations and fake organizations. It is very important to check on the reliability of any organization whether by phone by requesting a letter sent by mail or a meshulach at the door even if they say they represent a Yeshiva or other mossad that’s well known.

    For Israeli organizations you can check online with Olam Hatorah http://www.torahindex.com

    It’s hard to stress enough the importance of this verification.

    #630872

    ooomis15, a true chutzpah on their part. as much as we have an obligation to give they have to learn to accept what they are given and not beg for more.

    Last night, after 11 our bell rang it was a van full of meshulachim…all whom had just been by us on chanuka and received money…a groisser chutzpah if you ask me.

    #630873

    oomis
    Participant

    1) “The collecters that send others to the ppl that gave them nicely are being oiver a mefurish gemara in elu metzios That a person shouldn’t say my host treated me exceptionally because in result others will burden themselves onto that host and it comes out he returned his host a bad for a good! “

    2) “ooomis15, a true chutzpah on their part. as much as we have an obligation to give they have to learn to accept what they are given and not beg for more.

    Last night, after 11 our bell rang it was a van full of meshulachim…all whom had just been by us on chanuka and received money…a groisser chutzpah if you ask me.”

    What is especially upsetting is when these guys come to my house (in a beautiful limousine parked around the corner (they don’t know I can see from my back window as they come around the block), and one after another of them ring ther bell. I finally caught on that they were all from the same place, after the third guy came collecting and received money (of course no one showed a teudah, but neither do I ever ask to see one, so I guess that is my responsibility), and I stopped answering the doorbell. As I once explained, collectors are supposed to get a permit to collect in my neighborhood. It is issued by our local tzedaka vaad. I don’t usually ask to see the teudah, I always just gave, because the person came to collect. But after MANY bad experiences, and after a woman in the neighborhood was robbed by a guy dressed as a collector, I am more circumspect and selective.

    Thanks, Rosh Yeshivah, for the halacha from Elu M’tziyos that you explained.

    #630875

    veyatziv
    Member

    Once when I was doing pretty bad financially,(I had just moved from EY.)someone knocked on my door. I looked around for as much money as I could find. I came up with a handfull of change which was basically all the money I had. (If I remember correctly, I didn’t have money to pay for the next day’s bread.)The man threw such a fit. I told him that that’s all the money I have and if he wants he can even come see that I don’t even have money to buy a chair to sit on! The bman felt very bad and wanted to give my money back. I did not allow him to since I already set aside that money to give him the tzeddaka. I hope he learned his lesson that everyone gives what they can afford and forcing someone to give more than they can afford is stealing!

    #630876

    veyatziv- The level of self restraint that you showed was admirable. You are right to coerce someone to give you a contribution is ganifta. When someone invites you into their home, at least you can exhibit a modicum of derech eretz and kavod for the bal tzeddka. After all as a Meshulach you are an Ambassador from a Tzeddka orginization, and the way the home owner is treated (from their point of view) gives either a good or bad impression of the integrity of the Tzeddeka Organization.

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