As The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore readies for our Annual Meeting, marking the completion of another fiscal year and Annual Campaign, it is the appropriate time to glimpse back on the months that have passed. Through the year, we have had to navigate times of both challenge and jubilation.
It is hard to believe that it was a year ago that three Israeli teens were kidnapped while hiking near the West Bank. The ensuing search for the missing boys and the later tragic discovery of their bodies united the Jewish world in collective despair and mourning.
And, the realization of this national trauma put Israel and the region back into a familiar place of war and unrest. Rockets fired from Gaza on civilian targets, IDF responded and so on and so on. It was a long summer, to say the least.
Aside from hopes and prayers for peace and understanding in the region, our Baltimore Jewish community rallied with impressive human and financial support for Israel’s most vulnerable. We had a role to play and we did. Elderly were tended to, children received needed trauma counseling and the most pressing needs received the full heart of world Jewry.
Our concern for our global family also extended to those caught in the crossfire of political unrest in Ukraine. Through the work of our overseas partners, we were and are a lifeline to many who literally have no other source of support. Because of the strength of our Annual Campaign, we were able to ensure that those who require a caring, loving hand have one in The Associated system. We fed, clothed and provided relief to the poorest Jews on the planet.
Here at home, we were able to answer the immediate needs of our community and plan ahead for future generations based on the strength and wisdom of our centralized system of giving and collaboration. The Associated is dedicated to uplifting the vulnerable and inspiring a deep connection to Judaism, Israel and each other.
Because of the work we have done collectively as a community this past year, we are able to provide enriching Jewish programs for families with young children, meaningful Israel experiences for teens and young adults, rewarding summers for our campers, diverse Jewish opportunities for our college students, strong education for students with special needs, safe haven for survivors of domestic violence, career counseling for those in search of jobs, dignity for our oldest residents and so much more.
And we remain committed to tikkun olam, repairing the world. When there is an opportunity for the Jewish community to step forward and be good neighbors to all who live and work in Baltimore, The Associated and our community are present.
We could not accomplish any of these great strides for our community in isolation. It is thanks to thousands of generous donors and volunteers and partner organizations that we are a strong vibrant community and that we look optimistically toward an even brighter tomorrow. Through collaboration, cooperation and commitment to our sacred legacy, I know that the future years will be met with the same resolve as this one. Thank you! Enjoy the summer!
Marc B. Terrill is president of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore. Help celebrate the end of the campaign year with The Associated on June 24.