One dollar goes a long way at United Jewish Federation of Tidewater

by | Jun 10, 2016 | Other News

“Charity is not something we wait to do when we feel like it. We know if we wait to be inspired the inspiration may never arrive,” says Karen Jaffe, chair of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater Annual Campaign.

“So we perform acts of righteousness, whether or not we feel like it, because other Jews depend on us, and we will not abandon them,” she says.

Jaffe’s is the sort of passion that motivates Tidewater Jewish community members to donate to the Campaign year after year.

Among other organizations, funds from the Campaign are allocated to local agencies and schools, such as Jewish Family Service of Tidewater and BINA High School. Throughout Virginia, funds are distributed to campus Hillel groups; in Israel, help is given to people with disabilities, and in the Former Soviet Union, to Holocaust survivors.

Without donations and gifts from the community, the Federation would not be able to aid so many locally and around the world.

“I belong to a compassionate community. This community says anywhere a Jewish person has no job, no food, no opportunity or no hope, we will extend our hand to help,” Jaffe says.

To date, the 2016 Campaign fundraising goal has not been reached, but the number of donors and new donors to the Campaign has increased. Those successes and accomplishments are due to the ‘team player’ attitude of UJFT’s small staff and dozens of dedicated volunteers working together for the greater good, says Alex Pomerantz, UJFT director of development.

This ‘go-getter’ mentality has produced visible results. There are 151 Federations in the nation, with 67 Federations comparable in size to Tidewater’s. Pomerantz says UJFT has raised the most money of all those 67 Federations, and more than 14 other larger Federations.

Jaffe is beyond grateful to all the contributors to Campaign.

“Your donations loudly say, ‘I will not turn my back. Doing nothing is not an option. I will belong. I will help. Even if I can’t do much, I will give. You can count on me,’” says Jaffe.

“Every dollar counts. If you have not given a gift to the Campaign, you have until June 30. You can call the office; you can call me personally, you can go online to, or you can mail in a check,” Pomerantz says.

“When you give a dollar you are going to help people you don’t even know and that is what the Jewish people are all about—repairing the world, Tikkun Olam.”

Pomerantz adds, “The UJFT thanks each and every donor who has already given to AND who will generously contribute to the 2016 Annual Campaign. Your gifts enrich and touch the lives of so many Jews and others, in our community, in the United States, in Israel, and around the world.”

For more information or to donate, go to, call 757-965-6100, or mail the UJFT at 5000 Corporate Woods Drive, Suite 200, Virginia Beach, VA 23462.