Our Caring Community: Achieving Impact Together
In 2013 the Jewish Alliance, with the foresight and generosity of Alan Hassenfeld, commissioned the Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies at Brandeis University to study economic insecurity among Jewish households in greater Rhode Island. The findings dispelled the common misconception that there is little to no poverty in the Jewish community or that Jews are disproportionately wealthy.
In only 34 months since the report was published, the Alliance and our community partners have earnestly and productively followed up on the recommendations made by launching Living on the Edge (LOE)— a slate of community programs and organizational initiatives that address the needs outlined and affirmed by the report.
A vital element of helping those who are experiencing economic insecurity is an understanding of where they are coming from in a Jewish sense. This requires a cultural competency which our network of LOE agencies and professionals is well positioned to handle—and it is changing the way we serve those in financial distress. Today, LOE has become a lifeline for many. Over time, more people have come forward for help—people who never imagined needing it. But as it was designed, LOE is not merely a handout, it is a hand up.
The LOE platform is driven by the values of dignity, compassion and respect for clients in a confidential and non-judgemental environment. In working together, we’ve fostered a coordinated system of positive change for our community members.
While the report’s findings are staggering, so too has been our community’s response. From the generosity of our LOE donors who take seriously their obligation to uplift those most in need to the critical work of our community partners who are highlighted throughout this report, the coordinated commitment to bettering the lives of our local Jewish community is beyond impressive.
Friends, although this report illustrates the great strides we have made as a community in the fight against poverty and vulnerability, there is still much work to be done. That said, it is with great pride that we share with you the impact the LOE initiative has made in our community since its launch.
HOW TO GET HELP:
Know that if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need assistance, we’re here for you, too.
We encourage you to visit AccessJewishRI.org — your single point of contact to access the multitude of services, activities, and resources provided by the Jewish community as well as social, health, and government organizations in greater Rhode Island.
If you prefer to speak to someone about the services available to you, call the AccessJewishRI warm-line at 401.421.4111 ext. 411.
HOW TO GIVE HELP
Your donation to the Living on the Edge initiative helps the Jewish Alliance and our partner agencies take concrete steps to get members of our community back on the path to long-term stability.
You can make a tax-deductible donation to LOE by visiting AccessJewishRI.org/donate or by calling 401.421.4111 ext. 165.