When disaster strikes, it can be easy to feel powerless. And when the disaster is far away, it can sometimes be easy to feel detached from any need to help its victims.
But teens who attend Orthodox Union Relief Missions learn that they are neither powerless nor exempt from responsibility to improve the world.
To date, over 3,500 Jewish teens have provided more than 4,000 hours of hands-on service in the course of 250+ missions to disaster areas around the world. Our teens have taken part in projects like repairing damaged homes, running pop-up cafes to serve people who are homeless, helping to care for displaced Ukrainian orphans in a Romanian orphanage while teaching them about Judaism, and spending time connecting with locals to offer comfort. Most recently, they began providing help to communities in Israel impacted by the war. Along the way, these teens realize just how important a value chessed is – and how big an impact they are capable of making. And they find their own Jewish identities and emunah strengthened.
Take it from a past Relief Mission participant, Charna: “The recent trip to Puerto Rico made me recognize that chessed is anything that helps make someone’s life a little easier, that makes them smile. It doesn’t have to mean building a whole house; it can just be laying the foundation. As I was leaving, my only thoughts were, ‘I don’t need to travel to do chessed, because chessed is right around the corner,’ and, ‘What can I do at home to help others?’”
As we plan future missions – including to help rebuild in Israel – we need your help. Your donation can allow a teen to realize his or her full potential while making a real difference in a place where it truly matters. $1,800 sponsors one teen to go on a relief mission – but any amount you can provide will our teens make a ripple effect across communities as our participants return home with their newly strengthened commitment to chessed.
Please give generously today to support this important work.