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New York - California Philanthropist Donates One Million Dollars To Orthodox Community To Help Sandy Victims

Published on: November 15, 2012 09:30 AM
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Shlomo Yehuda Rechnitz at a Torah Umesorah dinnerShlomo Yehuda Rechnitz at a Torah Umesorah dinner

New York - In an effort to inspire others, a well known Los Angeles philanthropist and community activist has donated one million dollars to be distributed among families and schools that fell victim to Hurricane Sandy.

“Helping people after a storm like this is a mitzvah that, Baruch Hashem, probably comes along once in a lifetime,” Shlomo Yehuda Rechnitz, co-CEO of Twin-Med a Multi-million dollar nursing supply business, told VIN News.  “People, bakovodike people are out on the street and don’t have clothes.  Many are focusing on helping individuals but you also have to remember that entire yeshivos have pretty much closed down.  I am hoping that others will step up to the plate and give generously.”

Despite the fact that he lives three thousand miles away from the storm stricken areas, Rechnitz felt strongly that the aftermath of the hurricane was an issue that affected more than just New York and New Jersey.

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“The Mesivta of Long Beach has to move up to the mountains for a few months,” explained Rechnitz.  “So many shuls, kollelim and the yeshivos in Belle Harbor and Bayswater are all out of seforim and learning has basically come to a halt.  Even though the storm may have hit the New York area, in reality it has hit us all.”

The funds, which are being administered by Torah Umesorah, are intended to replace equipment and seforim in schools as well as help individuals and families through communal assistance funds.  According to Rechnitz, Torah Umesorah approved over half a million dollars in assistance in just one hour today.

“Seagate, Achiezer and Mesivta of Long Beach each received $100,000,” said Rechnitz.  “A community assistance fund that is helping people in Far Rockaway and Long Beach got $150,000 and another $75,000 was allocated to the yeshivos in Belle Harbor and Bayswater.”

Despite the widespread damage done by the hurricane, Rechnitz expressed gratitude that the damages were mostly monetary in nature.

“Baruch Hashem people had time to evacuate,” said Rechnitz.  “Thankfully this seems to be a tzara that was not meant to hurt people, just their possessions.”

Rabbi Zvi Bloom of Torah Umesorah and a trustee of the Achiezer organization based in the Far Rockaway/Five Towns area, expressed his appreciation for Rechnitz’ tremendous contribution.  “I am especially thankful for the assistance we can now offer to our schools. Mr. Rechnitz has once again blazed a trail of chessed for others to emulate,” Rabbi Bloom said.


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Read Comments (19)  —  Post Yours »

2

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:11 AM Seriously Says:

There is a ton of chesed going on in the NY area right now, but why can't you just like at the article and think Baruch Hashem that he is helping out? Why the need to criticize when he is the one demonstrating achdus?

3

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:21 AM HUH___ Says:

they lost their money too.

im just curious, why are you letting distances on the map create distances???

we are all brothers and sisters who feel for eachother no matter where we live or the way of life we choose.

think positive! MI K'AMCHA YISROEL

4

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:22 AM ConcernedMember Says:

Perhaps some of them are dealing with damages they themselves sustained.

5

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:22 AM ChanaE Says:

@ comment#1 - People have donated from everywhere. Across the US, across the mechitza, across the religious/non-religious "divide", it doesn't matter...we are ONE people with ONE heart. Keep the light shining.

6

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:23 AM Anonymous Says:

They are here and giving but just not putting out press statements.
Not that I have a prob with that.

Where are you #1? Have you givin money or time? Have you lent a hand?

7

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:34 AM simba Says:

Thank you. You are a shining example of a real Baal Chesed. Everyone should know that he does not need this as a tax write off, the amount of Tzedaka he give in Los Angeles covers that. What a yid.

8

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:35 AM toolee Says:

Did you ever hear of " Matan B'seiser "?
guess you are not in the community if you haven't heard of all the chesed going on.

9

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:37 AM SHMOO2 Says:

Reply to #2  
Seriously Says:

There is a ton of chesed going on in the NY area right now, but why can't you just like at the article and think Baruch Hashem that he is helping out? Why the need to criticize when he is the one demonstrating achdus?

Also, consider the fact that many baalei chessed prefer to make their donations with no fanfare or public announcements, so you may not have heard about it.. This is not to criticize what Mr. Rechnitz did- he felt he needed to light a fire under other well-to-do askanim and "get the ball rolling" nationwide, which is totally understandable and much appreciated.

10

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:41 AM Anonymous Says:

because they lost their money too

and why are you creating distances by looking at distances on the map?
we are all brothers and sisters who feel for eachother no matter where we live or how we choose to live our lives as yidden.

think positive - MI K'AMCHA YISROEL

11

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:46 AM SandraM Says:

Its just amazing, some people LOVE to criticize. When I read this story, I thought: beautiful! What a special person! What could there be to criticize, but some people NEED to criticize. Its so ugly.

12

 Nov 15, 2012 at 10:49 AM Anonymous Says:

This is a wonderful, selfless gesture. These wonderful communities should rebuild and continue to grow. I've been to Belel Harbor, and what a beautiful place. It should only be so again.

13

 Nov 15, 2012 at 12:05 PM BarDaas Says:

Mr. Rechnitz is a beautiful neshama and a gem of a human being, G-d bless him.

14

 Nov 15, 2012 at 12:12 PM Anonymous Says:

Why can't he donate anonomously?

15

 Nov 15, 2012 at 12:23 PM BLONDI Says:

californians understand what devastation means...earthquakes and forest fires are devastating occurrences. you should be blessed with abundance mr rechnitz and the many others who gave of themselves...

16

 Nov 15, 2012 at 12:24 PM Grumpy Says:

Reply to #6  
Anonymous Says:

They are here and giving but just not putting out press statements.
Not that I have a prob with that.

Where are you #1? Have you givin money or time? Have you lent a hand?

Just to add to your comment about putting out press statements:

"Gaivah giving," -- self-aggrandizement disguised as generosity -- is generally distasteful.

In contrast, those who give with anivus -- taking pains to minimize attention and accolades -- deserve credit, not just for their generosity and sensitivity, but for their enviable strength of character and inner nobility.

In this case, however, such public displays of generosity are not just acceptable; they are desirable and necessary as the publicity serve is more than likely to encourage others to follow suit. Even if many of those who do are "gaivah givers," the means justify the ends.

17

 Nov 15, 2012 at 12:52 PM sheyash-boi Says:

WOW!!! Rabbi Rachnitzer you are such a sample to all of us, you dont just talk, you actually do.im sure many will learn from you.

18

 Nov 15, 2012 at 03:54 PM Very not PC Says:

Wow you NY’ers can’t handle a little criticism; you are so full of yourselves!!! I lived in NY for 20 years and I speak from experience when I say I know all about NY communities. Lots of organizations but pray to g-d you should never need their assistance because at the end of the day you are on your own. Some of you are going so far as calling someone that actually gave 1Mil of his own money, “putting out press statements” or “Gayvah Giver”. Are you kidding? NY reeks of gaivah, most living beyond their means doing all kinds of illegal business so you can afford to show off to your neighbor and of course will give generously from that stolen money. You wont admit you have pedophiles and molesters because of your “do nothing wrong attitude” and anyone visiting NY will tell you that manners are non existent. NY Schools wont accept you because you are not good enough, we are better than you, our parent body is better than you. And if you are a BT forget it, and g-d forbid if you have a different tone to your color other than pale white, you are an instant disease.
So yes. MI K'AMCHA YISROEL. But NY jews will behave like NYers if torah and mussar is not their priority.

19

 Nov 16, 2012 at 01:42 AM schwartzi Says:

Reply to #18  
Very not PC Says:

Wow you NY’ers can’t handle a little criticism; you are so full of yourselves!!! I lived in NY for 20 years and I speak from experience when I say I know all about NY communities. Lots of organizations but pray to g-d you should never need their assistance because at the end of the day you are on your own. Some of you are going so far as calling someone that actually gave 1Mil of his own money, “putting out press statements” or “Gayvah Giver”. Are you kidding? NY reeks of gaivah, most living beyond their means doing all kinds of illegal business so you can afford to show off to your neighbor and of course will give generously from that stolen money. You wont admit you have pedophiles and molesters because of your “do nothing wrong attitude” and anyone visiting NY will tell you that manners are non existent. NY Schools wont accept you because you are not good enough, we are better than you, our parent body is better than you. And if you are a BT forget it, and g-d forbid if you have a different tone to your color other than pale white, you are an instant disease.
So yes. MI K'AMCHA YISROEL. But NY jews will behave like NYers if torah and mussar is not their priority.

yes, i can pretty much agree with you

20

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