Mar 24, 2014
Zaki Tamir Apologizes, Explains

Crown Heights Vaad Hakohol Chairman Zaki Tamir apologizes for those having to receive Pesach charity vouchers in broad daylight.

Dear Sisters and Brothers,
 
Please allow me to express my utmost gratitude to Hashem for giving me the Zechus to unite all of us with participation in the great Mitztva of Maos Chitim, and special thanks to the Rebbe for giving me the strength to do my job in the Rebbe’s Shechuna.
 
Thankfully, I am not alone in this task, in fact, 182 people, so far, have contributed money towards Maos Chitim to buy Matzos and other essentials to benefit families in Crown Heights, and that number is growing. Every person that I have spoken to has pledged with an open hand and with a smile, and many thanked me for giving them the opportunity to contribute. Many of the donors are not from Crown Heights and some are not even from New York State.
 
Special thanks to my family and close friends that, not only contributed money but helped me collect from others. Additionally, several people that came to collect tickets for the distribution, donated significantly towards the cause and I thank them for that. It is this type of unity that humbles me and makes me feel thankful to Hashem that I am part of such a great community, a community that I continue to serve with pride.
 
The list of donors will be brought to the Rebbe’s Ohel before Pesach, b’n, to request a special blessing for all the participants of this very special mitzvah. By participating in this Mitzva, we ask the Rebbe, our father, to recognize and distinguish the sons and daughters that reach into themselves to share bread with their siblings before Pesach, and as Chassidim we know that the Rebbe would not allow for our prayers to remain unanswered, especially when we are working hand-in-hand to help one-another in this manner.
 
The ticket distribution to register for food and Matza was yesterday, Sunday 3/23, between 130pm and 330pm. The registration was located at the CHJCC on Kingston Avenue. Since then, several people have expressed their dismay about the public display of consumers waiting on line outside the CHJCC for an extended period of time and that this may have caused members of our community to experience embarrassment.

Under different circumstances I might not have responded to the complaints publicly, and in fact I expressed my apologies to the consumers personally during the waiting time, but in this case, and dealing with this holy community, I feel compelled to respond publicly because I am certain that the complaints are not mindless ones but rather the complaints are an expression of legitimate concern of each person among us to care and feel the burden of our brothers and sisters. I therefore take all the complaints very seriously, I take it to heart as constructive criticism and I work to steadily correct and improve my performance each year.

Firstly, and without reservation I extend my personal apology to anyone that may have been offended or embarrassed by the manner in which the registration took place, and I ask you to please forgive my oversight regarding this particular matter.

In addition, please accept the following explanation, not as an excuse for the way the matter was handled but rather simply to inform the consumers, the donors and the public of the considerations made before reaching this result.

Every year for the past three years I have worked to provide food for families before Pesach. Pesach is a very expensive holiday and families that would generally not need financial assistance, do need the extra help on Pesach.
 
My objective is to get the highest available quality to the greatest number of needy families in Crown Heights. Every decision is measured by whether or not it furthers the stated objective.

In past years, the ticket distribution and the food distribution was more discrete, the food distribution was conveniently located in Crown Heights, but that discreteness and the convenience of local food distribution came at a heavy price.

The two greatest complaints in past years were, 1) that members of the community were not informed about the ticket distribution, because many don’t have access to the internet, and therefore missed the date, and 2) the quality and selection of food was inferior to other similar and related distributions.

This year the ticket distribution was advertised more than ever before, not only online but also in every shul. Additionally, while the ticket distribution was scheduled for 1:30pm-3:30pm, it extended until 7pm. This year, more than 300 families received tickets, compared to last year's 200 families. More than 60 families signed in after 4:00pm, not because they were late, but because they did not know about the distribution until they saw the line on Kingston Ave.

Dear friend, please recognize that 60 families benefited nearly $500 worth of assistance because of seeing the line outside. Also consider that this was not the intended benefit of having a line on Kingston Avenue, but it is a benefit nonetheless, and there are an additional 60 families in our community that will have the help they direly need for this holiday, as a result.

I am certainly not qualified to measure the benefit to these additional families against even one moment of embarrassment to a yid standing on line for a minute longer than comfortable, but in a very specific way the objective has been furthered to benefit a greater number of people for Pesach.

In past years, thousands of dollars were set aside to pay for transport of the food to be delivered from the Brooklyn Navy Yard to Crown Heights, and the distribution of the food in Crown Heights was scheduled only after every other distribution was complete. It was this task of transport that realistically caused for our community to lack the benefit of the valuable and scarce items, such as chicken, fish, eggs, and grape juice, items that were gone by the time the transport set out to Crown Heights.
 
With the intention of addressing this problem, I met with Oneg Shabbos, the food source, and asked to have my community served with priority, that is to say that I was making a special request that we get first. In order to further the goal for quality and in order for my request to be granted there were conditions that had to be met, including conditions that required the director of Oneg Shabbos in Boro Park to personally handle the distribution of tickets in Crown Heights in order to cross-reference the registration against two separate lists. Additionally, for the request to be granted, and for practical reasons (that include assignment of funds to food and matza as opposed to labor and transport) the food distribution would have to take place in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, which would allow for easy automobile access and larger quantities of food to be distributed, as opposed to a location in Crown Heights.

This past Sunday at 130pm-330pm, was the time available for the ticket distribution and I thank Ms. Deutsch, of Oneg Shabbos, for taking difficult steps to change the scheduling of other obligations to extend the time of her service accepting registration until 7pm.
 
It seems that this year we may have improved with parts while other considerations still need improvement, please join me in my effort to make this community reach the potential the Rebbe saw in every one of us, I am ready and able to partner with you in this effort. Please call the CHJCC if you want to contribute money, volunteer, or offer rides to people that don’t have cars. Many people have taken me up on this offer and they can attest that there is a lot of work to do and there is no one better to do it than you and me.
 
The work is not easy, and the results are not perfect, but the success is measured by improvement as opposed to perfection, there is only ONE Perfect, and may He, Hashem, bless each and every one of us, our families and friends, for a Kosher and Freilichen Pesach.
 
Very truly yours,
Devoted public servant,
Zaki Isaac B. Tamir



Most Read Most Comments


Opinions and Comments
1
there is a better way
Zaki please next time create a phone number to call to pick up the vouchers put flyers everywhere but never make a line in front of the whole comunnity to see
(3/24/2014 3:33:09 PM)
2
Moshiach
This is defiantly going to bring Moshiach a lot closer!
This is the true example of a Chossid.
(3/24/2014 3:37:16 PM)
3
Wow
Zaki, you honesty and humility is inspiring
(3/24/2014 3:41:00 PM)
4
Good Man
Zaki is a good man.
I learn with him each wk.
Hatzlocho.
(3/24/2014 3:42:22 PM)
5
THANK U!
FOR ALL UR WORK!
(3/24/2014 3:45:52 PM)
6
Zaki tamir
You are an inspiration!
May gd bless you ten fold spiritually and physically for all your efforts on behalf of the community.
(3/24/2014 3:46:34 PM)
7
D L
What a beautiful letter. Thank you for your heartfelt response.
(3/24/2014 3:51:37 PM)
8
nice...but
Your work is commendable .However I was horrified to see the lane in view of every passerby I purposely drove by quickly and turned my head the other way. But I was stuck at the red light and saw a woman just stand there and stare and stare at the line...has to be another way
(3/24/2014 4:05:22 PM)
9
Thank you!
Thank you for all your hard work.
(3/24/2014 4:07:58 PM)
10
Donations
Is there a link we can donate to? I would like to see CHJCC being more vocal about tzedaka funds we can donate to. A website, advertising, pushkas, etc.
(3/24/2014 4:11:10 PM)
11
Heartwarming.
Your integrity and character is exemplary. Thank you for helping our community!
(3/24/2014 4:16:09 PM)
12
Thank you for all you do however…
Every year our family contests as to who would be the "lucky" ones to go and stand on the food lines - Its humbling to say the least. Forget the photos that have been taken at past distributions. This year when it was announced that it will be on Kingston Ave, no one even gave it a thought of going. We just skipped it. Im sure we were not the only ones. If this was a private personal charity I would say that is his prerogative as to how to go about it, but acting as a "Jewish" community project this is wrong.
While I appreciate the strategical planning to get the most and best for the community, there is no reason it has to be done this way. I hope something will be done about it for this year.
(3/24/2014 4:34:07 PM)
13
Todays daf yomi
Todays daf yomi sukka 49b says tzedoka should be distributed privately
(3/24/2014 4:34:42 PM)
14
thank you
The "benefit" of the line can also be achieved through fliers. No need to embarrass people for that.
(3/24/2014 4:38:13 PM)
15
How many did not come?
You say more people came because they saw the line, the Question is how many did not come because they were too embarrassed to be on line.

Thank you Zaki For all your good Work.
(3/24/2014 4:46:55 PM)
16
Zaki
Zaki Tamir does and u dare to criticizes shame on you!!!!

Get off your rear and do something....

Keep up the great work zaki..
(3/24/2014 4:47:46 PM)
17
I love you Zaki
May we all have the schuss to be able to give
(3/24/2014 4:49:18 PM)
18
not acceptable
You are saying that 240 people were humiliated to benefit another 60?
That is NOT a justification.
Mail out a notice and include a self addressed envelope to mail back form. Vouchers will be sent in mail.
This is not a ration line in poland in the 1940s
(3/24/2014 4:54:53 PM)
19
Thank you for your work
Nice letter. Thank you.
(3/24/2014 5:14:32 PM)
20
line outside in day light ?!
you make distribution at the office anytime whenever somebody walks in, asks, you give. why this limit of time why by day.
(3/24/2014 5:17:03 PM)
21
Responsible and Responsive
A very nice and heartfelt letter of explanation - not excuse - that will surely help more people get the assistance they need and improve the service next year. This is an example of an appropriate, timely, considerate response from a public official to a community complaint. Well done!
(3/24/2014 5:22:15 PM)
22
Thank you very much- but keep in mind...
People waited outside for3and half hours in the cold, some with kids- only to find the frustration of having to give the number and address to a lady - who typed it out. That was the problem! Obviously the names had to be cross matched on two lists - but the method was not effective. The frustration of having the lady type in your name and waiting 3 hours was unbelievable. Couldn't a fill out paper handed in have sufficed.
However, kol hakavod for the tremendous made to secure all these foodstuffs. We are grateful for the help
(3/24/2014 5:24:55 PM)
23
Ways to fix this so it never happens again
In addition to putting up notices in Shuls and on the internet, there should be flyers given out to each household as well as in schools. Furthermore, a different location should be used for voucher pick up.
Nevertheless, it takes a man of true character to apologize. Kol hakovod.
(3/24/2014 5:32:46 PM)
24
Left the line
I waited on the line for awhile but left after someone came over to me and told me that waiting on Kingston Ave is embarrassing.
I waited another few minutes and when the line was barely moving, I just left.
Thank you Zaki and anyone else involved, I'm not angry or bitter about it. I really do need the help but will have to figure something else out this year.
Pesach is really really difficult to make. I don't make ends meet the whole year and Pesach really throws some loops.

It's not only about food, the inability to buy some nice things for Yom Tov is not even on the list. By Pesach time, kids clothes, shoes, hats etc are in desperate need of replacement and there are just no funds for it.
Shaitels, hats, kapotas are going on many years now, teenagers bitter because they don't get anything for Yomtov.
We happen to be a two parent working family and just can't cover basics ever.
I shudder to think of single parent families and what they are going through.

I've come to a point where I take when offered as I don't have a choice, but I'm shamed every time as yesterday I just couldn't do it, so I left.

It's horrible, but I get a heavy heart thinking about any Yom Tov and avoid Shul as I'm plain old embarrassed.

I think there are wonderful people and organiztions in CH, I've been helped by CSSY and Mrs Scheiner , The Spielmans and Community Council and it's amazing, I just find that when a family is really struggling it's not enough to get through Yomtov.

In the past before I needed help, we always donated small amounts that we were able to. I hope to be able to again some day soon.

I hope I will be able to donate to make sure Women can get something nice, shaitel done, some cleaning help etc. Men can get a new hat, a new kapote, a new talis etc when needed. Kids should not be embarresssed to go to shul as all their friends have nice new clothes and they are wearing last years hand me downs.

Kudos to all the amazing people and organizations that do so much and put in so much time, energy and money, Hashem should give you everything you the koach and all you need bruchnius and bgashmius for you an your families.
(3/24/2014 5:42:51 PM)
25
Tizku L'mitvos
Keep up the good work!
(3/24/2014 5:49:37 PM)
26
Zaki really cares
Wow Zaki really has a big heart and because of him families in crown heights have food on their table on Pesach
(3/24/2014 5:56:40 PM)
27
So Amazing
Truly amazing to see someone that works so selflessly!
(3/24/2014 6:08:17 PM)
28
Zaki is the MAN!!
Kudos to you, Zaki for all the work you do on behalf of the Community. For my money, you can stay in that chosheve position for another 4 years, but is there any talk or movement for new elections?? Do the elections coincide with Presidential elections? What's the time table we should be concerned about?
(3/24/2014 6:16:26 PM)
29
Sincerly
I apologize for starring at the line on Sunday I honestly just wasn't quit sure what I was starring at . If it was you I was starring at please forgive me.

Anonyms
(3/24/2014 6:21:16 PM)
30
Yossy H
I was an active participant in yesterday's Facebook ranting about the badly handled distribution.

I am a fan of a lot of what Mr Tamir does for this community both inside and outside (Aliyah institute) his CHJCC role. Its nice that he acknowledged and was transparent about the error, and he even went further and pointed out issues with previous years lesser quality items.

However I think the regular people in this community didn't blow up because of this ONE event, for most of us it was the final trigger on many years of frustration with the way the CHJCC is run and its lack of customer service.

In final how are the most vulnerable members of our community who don't have cars and don't even have any close friends with cars, supposed to make it to downtown Brooklyn ? maybe some sort of arrangement can be made, maybe rent a few cargo vans and find volunteer drivers, if someone wants to arrange that, I am willing to help find good deals and drivers so just post your info.

(3/24/2014 6:22:48 PM)
31
How to improve it?
In my community everything is done by mail. Those seeking help call a phone line. A form is sent, where the recipient fills out such details as # of adults/children etc. and a reference of a Rav or other respected individual who can vouch for the family and their financial situation. Once accepted the recipient receives vouchers to the value of what the organizers consider resonable based on family numbers. The vouchers are in different catagories for Meat/Chicken, Fish, Fruit/Vegetables & general groceries, they can only be spent at specific stores, but they cover almost every jewish food business in the community, so no specific shop looses out, I also understand the stores themselves offer a discount to the issuer of the vouchers, thus saving money for the Tzedokah that fund it. No cash change can be given for a voucher more than the equivalent of approx. $1.50, so there is no abuse of people trying to "launder" them, also the vouchers are issued in mixed amounts just like paper bills. The only embarrassment is when handing them over to the cashier at the checkout rather than cash.
(3/24/2014 6:28:52 PM)
32
dont buy it
for every stupid thing they can deliver and/or mail fliers to EVERY door, but for this they can't ??
(3/24/2014 6:31:35 PM)
33
there is one thing the whole community needs to say:
Thank You Zaki!
a mentch, a chosid, a shliach.
(3/24/2014 6:47:17 PM)
34
CROWN HEIGHTS IS BLESSED
Zaki ,you are truly an inspiration and I am proud to know you.
Thank you for your hard work
ML
Most people
(3/24/2014 6:49:24 PM)
35
Good man, Gd loves you
I just read this letter to the community, how kind and caring this gentleman is.

I think it's important to not use the word (needy) anymore, I see it written in so many places, does it have to be used when a person is helping another. Zaki, I don't know you, but you are great. Please pass on the word to omit (needy) because we are all needy, we all need love, we all need comfort, we all need help in many ways, otherwise man would be a robot.

So whomever reads this, and remembers to omit the word needy when talking about helping another human, you are doing the right thing, in every sense of the commandment.

(3/24/2014 7:09:20 PM)
36
impressed
Never have I heard a politician speak so openly and honestly. I am impressed with his integrity, that he can tell the while truth, and be ready to say that he will do better next time...The rebbe is proud of you Zaki. I am sure that I speak for more than a few families in Crown Heights.
(3/24/2014 7:11:59 PM)
37
With all due respect,
With all due respect,

I believe it is an abdication of duty, in 2014, to not provide a link for people to donate.
(3/24/2014 7:46:34 PM)
38
zaki
Zaki has only the purest intentions . You are doing a amazing job and could not ask for any more.
(3/24/2014 7:49:20 PM)
39
We are blessed
Thank you Zaki for being such a devoted servant of our community
(3/24/2014 7:57:01 PM)
40
gd bless u zaki tamir
Moshiach now. May no one be of need for this service
(3/24/2014 8:10:17 PM)
41
Zaki is zachai
okay. and at the end of the day look how many people he helped make happy and proud this Yom Tov.
(3/24/2014 8:11:42 PM)
42
insensitivity at its worst
i desperately need the money but was dead embarrassed to wait there in full view of my high school students
what to do?
(3/24/2014 8:12:12 PM)
43
Apology?
This is not an apology, it's an explanation. If people don't like it than let than get off their rear end and do something. We live in a practical world. Besides the CHJCC is a government sponsored program, and government can't be trusted to do things right. Also, we are RELIANT on oneg shabbos, an organization from a different community and are subject to their whims. If we we want what we want how we want it than we have to have a stronger presence. We don't.
(3/24/2014 8:40:10 PM)
44
Zaki is great
I've worked with Zaki personally- he cares so much about every single Jew it's incredible. Keep up your good work! Without you families in crown heights wouldn't have Matzos at their Seder.
(3/24/2014 9:27:22 PM)
45
Zaki actually gets things DONE
Criticize as much as you want- when push comes to shove Zaki gets things done. Kol Hakavod. Truly inspiring.
(3/24/2014 9:28:30 PM)
46
M S
This must be the fourth year that Zaki arranged giving out Matzos to families in the schuna. May Hashem bentch him and all who took part in this wonderful mitzvah.
(3/24/2014 9:39:22 PM)
47
Single mom
For those of us who had to leave the line and didn't get the voucher - what now? can we still get it?
(3/24/2014 10:02:20 PM)
48
Wrong Wrong Wrong
The idea of Maos chitim is dignity. This was ill conceived . Yashar coach for trying and doing so much but this was insane

I WAS HUMULIATED JUST WATCHING people I knew and asking like an idiot what they were waiting for
(3/24/2014 10:08:33 PM)
49
Sruly C
Zaky we love you.

The people wrote with love and you responded with love.
Your a great example of a true leader.
(3/24/2014 10:08:43 PM)
50
Zaki Tamir
Always organizing positive things within the community. May we all learn from him. He's so dedicated to helping others.
(3/24/2014 10:14:20 PM)
51
ATTENTION "Single Mom"
Call the Council: 718-771-9000 - speak to Eli Cohen.
(3/24/2014 10:29:06 PM)
52
Visiting CH
I was just visiting from out of town and was amazed by how many people needed help and by the fact that they were made to stand on line outside in a public display. I think the concept of Matan B'Seser should be the ultimate goal. And at the very least to try and keep it as discreet as possible.
(3/24/2014 10:39:15 PM)
53
I look up to you
zaki is the man! He is a mentch. not to common anymore
(3/24/2014 10:44:09 PM)
54
Apology does not replace lack of action
This is not a criticism as such of the Community Council but a call for awareness: Notwithstanding the fact that probably no one was staring at anyone and there are so many families in need in Crown Heights that it is normal to receive some assistance- Still, I know that I personally would rather starve c''v than be seen on line waiting for the dole. I would not expect other people to have to do that. Sometimes one is so full of satisfaction and self-congratulation at being the bestower of bounty to the needy, that we forget that, per shulchan aruch, the manner in which said bounty is bestowed is crucial. There is never an excuse to shame another Jew and the means is not justified by the end.
(3/24/2014 10:51:54 PM)
55
Appreciative yet really pained
I never comment on this website. However, I am compelled to now. I greatly laud the amazing work that the chjcc does and realize that much effort, energy, time, and thought, go into each initiative. I was personally helped in the past from such programs and know how much relief it brings to families.
Each and every donor or volunteer is truly doing a tremendous mitzvah and should be thanked and appreciated for their service. They should be blessed for their generosity.
Yet, the oversight in this arrangement is completely inexcusable. The lack of sensitivity to human dignity is beyond words.
My family is in a financial crisis, and I had initially considered getting the help. Bh, I realized that I had another alternative, and was relieved not to have to go thru the shame.
On Sunday I walked by the chjcc and noticed the line snaking out till the pizza shop. As I walked by I was consumed by a feeling of burning shame and deep compassion for these wonderful men and woman that were doing what it takes to support their families, despite the personal humiliation they obviously were experiencing. I walked by quickly, and turned my head away. I took an alternate route for the way home. I was totally horrified and could not bear the shame of these wonderful people.
Unfortunately I have been the recipient of food packages in a different community. We must learn from them how to help others with dignity. I have never stood on a line, have never even spoken to someone face to face. The packages were delivered to the door discretely, consistently, without fanfare. Requests for help with yom tov necessities are handled on the phone.
Thank you for admitting your mistake. But please, I appeal to all wonderful crown heights organizations who do wonderful work, take the dignity of your brothers and sisters seriously. Nobody likes asking for help. No one wants to be on the receiving end. But when one does end up there, the least they can hope for is confidentiality, respect, and true love and compassion.
Lets remember that we are truly ain mishpacha, and as Hillel said the entire Torah is " what you hate done to you, don't do to,others "
(3/24/2014 10:53:05 PM)
56
Comments defending Mr Tamir
It almost sounds like some comments are a sort of 'backlash' defending Zaki Tamir from what is perceived as the 'unreasonable' suggestions of concerned citizens as to how to make the receiving process less traumatic for the recipients. It's a correct and proper thing for the people to speak their needs in any municipal undertaking. I am sure that Zaki Tamir is intelligent enough to see it as such.
(3/24/2014 11:01:54 PM)
57
Thank you. But not good enough.
Everything in this letter is nice and good.

But it doesn't explain why they had to do this at the Community Council, at the corner of Crown and Kingston.

They could have found another location to ask people to line up on the outskirts of the community, where they would not be the center of attention. Beis Rivkah at Crown and Nostrand would have been one obvious choice.

And yes, I am one of those who did not join the line out of sheer embarrassment. Should I feel better now that 60 others benefited?
(3/24/2014 11:03:25 PM)
58
huh?
BH
BSD

IF THERE IS SUCH A THING AND SILENT AUCTIONS
COULD THIS WHOLE DISGRACE NOT HAVE HAPPENED
IN THE FIRST PLACE?
WE ARE SUPPOSED THE MODEL OF AHAVAS YISROEL

(3/24/2014 11:10:56 PM)
59
The story of two realities
This is the story of two realities
It seems like the people who are praising the action of Zaki and the organization he is heading are the people who never has to wory about being needy
Then there are the comments of those who at least once in their lives experienced the embarrassment of being needy
And so the story is of the fortunate and the less fortunate each seeing things from their point of view
But the mitzvah of tzdakah is not for the giver to feel good about themselves for giving! It's to give! And it's to make the receiver feel good, great, happy! Not embarrassed! Not as if they are taking something from society!!!
With all do respect and appreciation to you Zaki in your open letter you displayed lack of understanding of the very people you are trying to help
Compassion can not be taught! It us something you either have or you pretend to have but don't really understand till you walk a mile in the other's shoes
Let's hope no one in our community will have to walk in the poor's shoes to understand the enormous feeling of indignity and embarrassment having to stand in line on the street for hours in the cold in front of the entire community
The bitter taste of the sweet grape juice mixed with tears for not being able to afford it on your own!
Let's hope that next year our entire community will not need the help of this organization so they can go and help other communities by providing them with a place far from their own streets to go and stand in line for food
Wishing you all a wonderful pesach
The poor man
(3/24/2014 11:16:09 PM)
60
Don't be embarrassed
Are we embarrassed to use EBT cards? That we have medicaid? It's so expensive to support a family, of any size, you need to earn triple digit salaries, and even if 2 parents are working, you still can't make ends meet. So don't be embarrassed that you/we can't earn enough money to cover all our expenses, with tuition and Yom tov, and clothes and camp any the list goes on. Let's not forget about CH rents!
(3/24/2014 11:22:10 PM)
61
If you need
Call cssy or benji stock or zaki. Or write a anonymous note that Yukel Todros needs food a d clothes for Yom tov. Even if yukel Todros is you. If you are too ashamed to do it, you might deprive your family of the mitzvah of vsa.achta Bchagecha chv. Sad wives and bitter teens are bad news on yom tov.Just ask the Rav if you don't believe me. Thanks so much to all the givers like zaki, benji and Mrs Scheiner. May all who stood in the line this year have money to give to others for pesach next year. Moshiach now.
(3/24/2014 11:55:09 PM)
62
A real man
A real man apologizes when he failed even if unintentionally.
(3/25/2014 12:01:20 AM)
63
To Mr Tamir
You are a wonderful man! Kudos to you for writing this letter, many in your position would have not done so.

A close friend of mine waited in line yesterday for more than an hour. Without going into details, It was a VERY painful experience. (This cannot be compared to using Foodstamps or Medicaid for abvious reasons.)

Zaki, maybe you can get a gvir in CH to give a substancial bonus to those who endured the embarrassment yesterday so they can cover a drop more of their nessecities and uplift their yom tov.

Mr Tamir your hard work does not go unnoticed and this comment is not meant to attack you in anyway.

May we celebrate Pesach in Yerushalayim!
(3/25/2014 12:12:14 AM)
64
Simchas Shabbos Vyomtom
Bengy (w your father Shimshon), thanks for always being sensitive and giving discretely without fanfare, pictures and lines. That's truly putting yourself in the needy's shoes. NO ONE SHOULD EVER HAVE TO BE EMBARRASSED!! PLEASE TAKE THIS LESSON TO HEART! If you need to post pictures, don't post of faces!
(3/25/2014 12:19:22 AM)
65
Missing the point
This has nothing to do with bashing Zaki Tamir. There are hundreds of people in the community, many of them hard working who cannot make ends meet. Do you have any idea what it is like to to work from morning to night, both parents, resort to using babysitters and begging family and friends to help take care of your children without being able to make ends meet?

Yes, it's wonderful help is available, but the help shreds the last few ounces of dignity left.

I truly bless you, those who have bashed and been unsympathetic to never ever know what it's like to go hungry so that your children can have food for dinner or to wear the same torn sheitel for 10 years as your growing children need clothes and shoes. May you never know what it's like to dread the second half of every month having to choose rent over paying the electricity bill, cringing over the thought of tuition and weighing the pros and cons of home schooling versus a second job.

(3/25/2014 1:04:43 AM)
66
Thanks for your help Zaki, but its backwards thinking
60 families signed up because they saw the line on Kingston.

600 families would have signed up, if there was no line on Kingston

(ever here of a website, email, mail, phone, fax...)
(3/25/2014 1:04:55 AM)
67
Line up in front of the rabbonims office
Since everyone goes to sell their Chometz through the Rabbonim, it would not be embarrassing to stand in line at the Rovs office...and yet even better, let the Rov give the vouchers so it is done discreetly
(3/25/2014 1:11:25 AM)
68
Williamsburg
Williamsburg gives out more help, ujo and private orgs. They don't seem to have any lines for help.
(3/25/2014 2:05:59 AM)
69
the apology is too long winded
I lost focus before I got close to the apology...
(3/25/2014 2:19:37 AM)
70
MASK
Zaki and all your volunteers, yasher koach!
May i make a suggestion please.
Maybe you can arrange another time and another way for those families in need who left the line to get assisstance? Reading the comments here it is clear to me that there are families that need but it was painfully embarassing to them to stay on the line in the street.
Tizku lmitzvos!
(3/25/2014 3:18:04 AM)
71
Another way..
On Purim, when it is a mitzva to give a person money on the day, millions of pounds are put in envelopes and slipped through peoples doors to help them with Pesach needs. This is what is done in London.
(3/25/2014 7:34:00 AM)
72
Good letter...
until the last paragraph which does indeed sound like excusing himself by saying that he is not perfect instead of a commitment to finding a different way so that no-one will be embarrassed or made to wait in a long line ever again.
(3/25/2014 7:39:57 AM)
73
not a CrownHeighter
Zaki can be my lawyer any time!--not exceptionable. there has to b a better way!
(3/25/2014 8:25:31 AM)
74
Matzos- One of your special projects for the Shchuna
Zaki, I see firsthand how you take this mitzvah to heart and expend time, energy and money to make sure every family of the Shchuna has enough Matzoh for Pesach.
May it be a Zechus for yourself, your Eishes Chayil who supports all your good work, and your family.
(3/25/2014 8:38:26 AM)
75
thank you!
But I do think it sounds condescending to be referred to as 'needy'. Everyone in golus is 'needy' of one thing or another. I find it more embarrassing to see young ladies in their late 20's who don't yet have to wear a shaitel, for example.
As for the example of having people fill out and mail forms, youwill spend much time chasing them down and sending many reminders.
(3/25/2014 8:43:25 AM)
76
my observation
well, I saw the line twice yesterday and had no idea what it was for. I saw somebody I know in it, but I just smiled and waved and went on my way. Just a tip, you don't always need to be so interested in other people's business.
(3/25/2014 10:14:36 AM)
77
Zaki cares and thats what matters most
Can anyone in this community ever be appreciative? Stop critisizing and start appreciating what people are doing for others. If you have a better idea, then gezunterheit- start a "better" system. Doesn't seem like anyone wants to do anything but complain.

Thank you Zaki for helping many families and actually CARING about others. Unfortunatelly we dont see many of people like you these days.
(3/25/2014 10:56:06 AM)
78
I waited on those lines and still not criticizing....
Yes, I waited quite sme time for my voucher. but you know what? I am THANKFUL that I am in acommunity where people are helping others. I am a balas tzeshuvah and I have seen many other communities and lifestyles. NO ONE has a open heart like this one. Zaki thank you for your letter and thank you for your help. May hashem give you the strength and the means to continue organizing such program in crown heights.
(3/25/2014 10:58:45 AM)
79
a better way
it can be done in a very simple way. just like the coats 4 the needy u call a number leave name and they get back to u as to where to pick them up. and in this case after u have the name and address it could have been sent in the mail just like cssvy sent the flyer out to those that they thought need it
(3/25/2014 11:11:32 AM)
80
Larry
I don't under stand why the rabbis don't say anything about the amount of money that is wasted on Purim specially when Pesach comes right after
(3/25/2014 1:29:41 PM)
81
To CHJJ - make it personal
Sometimes in municipal or community initiatives bureaucracy takes over and the personal aspect is lost and it's easy to lose sight of the recipient's experience. As a guide, before extending services to the community, simply follow the Torah directives of putting yourself in another person's shoes and not doing something in a way that you would not want others to do it to you.
(3/25/2014 2:10:35 PM)
82
To #77
Caring is not enough- we are not 'cardiac Jews', it's the action which is most important. Surely none of the members of the community council would have enjoyed being on that infamous line themselves. If he really cares, which I agree with you he probably does, things will be different next year.
(3/25/2014 2:12:47 PM)
83
Citizen Berel
Thank you, Zaki!!!!

Zaki is the best!!!

1. 2. 3. 4. Go Zaki!!!!!

Published!!!
(3/25/2014 2:37:57 PM)
84
annie
I waited on line for hours and when I finally got inside the women that gave out the vouchers for the food, asked me how many people are in your family, and I told her 2 and she told me for 2 people it is to much, I understand that I really didnt need 50;lb bag of onions and etc, but they could of came out and told the people standing on line that the bags they are giving out are 50lb or more, so a lot of people would of not been standing on line for hours.
(3/25/2014 5:19:32 PM)
85
Sholom Dovber
The registration should occur online.
The committee can then make their assessment, if there are some people who should not be asking, they can be contacted by email and told in a diplomatic manner, that there request cannot be fulfilled this time around.
All the others, the vast majority can be send their voucher electronically.
People who do not have cars to pick up their supplies, should be given another email address were they can request a ride from volunteers or another who is going themselves with a voucher.
Further, the produce should be of a medium standard otherwise it will be wasted.
(3/25/2014 8:04:13 PM)
86
love you Zaki
You are the best:)
(3/25/2014 9:10:59 PM)
87
furthermore
For future reference:
People should not have to endure extended periods of time pursuing assistance, even in private. The longer they are in the state of pursuing assistance the more downtrodden they could justifiably become.

Also, it is causing embarrassment to be seen when seeking assistance even by others who are doing the same, therefore a method that maintains the maximum level of privacy, even from their fellow receivers should be mantaned, to the greatest extent possible (online, phone, mail-in registration), in-vehicle pickup in an out of the area location.

Assistance should not be limited due to oversized packaging. Many, myself included, would gladly volunteer to split up pre-bagged foods into smaller quantities for those who could receive less. One thing is certain, when a family needs 20lbs of potatoes, a 50lbs is better than 0lbs. Having less siblings is no reason to be disregarded. This is not a political press-op it is what we are commanded to do, with guidelines (for every time and place) on how to fulfil it.

I am available for private consultation on how to best implement the process.

-Your friend and fellow brother

info282636@gmail.com
(3/25/2014 10:35:15 PM)
88
Good... better... BEST
Zaki! Good .... Better ... best... Please don't rest until your good is better and your better is the BEST! Thank you for apologizing publicly... Many pple will learn from this mistake and work on giving privately because of this publication.
(3/26/2014 12:11:51 AM)
89
Regarding # 63
Now THAT'S a good idea!

(3/26/2014 9:51:34 AM)
90
I was there
i didnt feel embarassed at all while standing on line, it was a little anoying waiting outside, but i i only started feeling uncomfortable now when everyone is saying how embarrassing it must be. i didnt see anyone on line appear to be self-conscience or hiding, it felt more like, well.. if the community was able to get us free stuff for yom tov and i could use the help, why not get on line. i dont know what other people were feeling in their hearts, but i dont see why it should be so embarrassing
(3/26/2014 5:44:13 PM)
91
Roumani
Whenever a capable leader organizes a well meaning and much needed allocation of assets to our very own community members who are struggling there will always be "criticizers".
Any possible negativity, be it real or imagined, that might have resulted is overshadowed by the enormous relief our brothers & sisters received as a result of Zaki's unique people skills!
Zaki, please don't ever step down!!! Crown Heights needs you!
(3/27/2014 8:02:01 AM)
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