Pictured above: Julie Berman (SAZF), Hazel Levine (UJW) and Josh Hovsha (BOD) with staff from Pick n Pay Gardens Centre sending off donated goods to Plett
More than 2 900 people were left destitute by the storm and 10 000 displaced by one of the most destructive fires in recent memory in Knysna and Plettenberg Bay. The two natural disasters brought the affected communities to their knees.
With one of the key mandates of the Cape SAJBD being ‘to co-ordinate social welfare projects on behalf of the wider society, particularly in times of national emergency’, they responded with a community-wide appeal.
Josh Hovsha, Director of Cape SAJBD said “We were proud to lead the Jewish community appeal; who have responded with overwhelming chesed by offering up whatever help they could give, including monetary donations, household goods and counselling services.”
The Cape SAJBD with its affiliates the SAZF, SAUJS and the UJW, issued a rallying call to the Jewish community to assist, and to date, we have raised over R240 000 as well as sent truckloads of donated and new household goods to those in need, in the affected areas.
The greatest service has been provided by the Plett Shul whose volunteers, the unsung heroes, have worked tirelessly and compassionately to help meet the needs of the Jewish families affected by the fire, as well as the greater community, by setting up a smaller, more intimate relief centre that has helped minimise the overwhelming trauma victims have experienced.
The silver lining has genuinely been the outpouring of support and respite to these communities who have suffered significant hardship over the past few weeks.
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