Chomesh L’Chinuch Raises an Additional £55,400 for NW Schools
30th December 2016
The Chomesh L’Chinuch initiative by the Golders Green Beth Hamedrashhas has now raised over £100,000 for the benefit of our cash-strapped local schools, prompting calls from school governors for a roll-out across all North West London kehillos.
Chomesh L’Chinuch is a kehilloh-based projectwhereby members are encouraged to prioritise and allocate one-fifth (a ‘Chomesh’) of their Tzedokah distributions to the local schools attended by their children. The initiative has the full support of GGBH’s Rav – Rabbi Y.M Greenberg,
Uniquely, members are not required to increase the amount of the annual Tzedokah which they already give. Rather, it is to make a conscious decision how to calculate their Tzedokah allocations according to Halachic guidance. This will ensure that local schools should receive at least one fifth of their annual Tzedokah amounts.
The second distribution from the GGBH Chomesh L’Chinuch to the schools was calculated on Sunday 1st Day of Chanukah (25th December). The significant amount raised of £55,400, in only 6 months, is a clear demonstration of how a communal response to the Chinuch financial crisis is possible. These funds will be distributed to the local schools, as attended by the GGBH children. The children of GGBH showed their appreciation for the significant amount, in a special picture at the shul’s Chanukah party.
Rav Greenberg highlighted, that “I am delighted with the success of this project – and how GGBH and other Kehillos can collectively address the substantial shortfalls in Chinuch budgets in NW London today. It is especially, appropriate that this second distribution of over £55,000 took place on Chanukah, which is a very opportune time for focussing on Torah Chinuch for our next generation”
It is anticipated that this GGBH-led campaign will be the precursor to a future North West London- wide rollout. Given the initial success, many other local Shuls and School Treasurers are eagerly awaiting the expansion of the project to their communities.
Mr Allan Becker, Chairman, Menorah Grammar School has described the initiative as “something incredible”, urging the rest of the community to follow GGBH’s lead. Mr Moshe Morris, Head of Finance Committee, at Menorah High School for Girls, added, “Well done on successfully launching this great initiative and leading the way by example”.
Nearly every Jewish school in NW London and beyond, with its substantial Kodesh programme, has a significant financial shortfall. In order to deliver a first class and successful Kodesh curriculum for the chinuch of our children, the difference has to be fund-raised from voluntary donations and the general community. In many schools these fund raising efforts are very challenging and gaps still remain. The total shortfall for the NW London Schools –is over £7,000,000 per annum.
In addition, many Rebbeim are not paid a ‘Jewish living wage’ for NW London and occasionally are paid late, sometimes by many months. This causes serious hardship to them and their families and the stress can impact their performance.
Rav Greenberg is only too familiar with the serious financial crisis burdening our schools. He is the School Rav for a number of the schools around NW London as well as Elector Rav of the JSSM. The Rav stated, “Our schools are the foundation of our community and our future. A serious financial crisis threatens our ability to provide the best Chinuch for our children. This campaign is designed to make a meaningful impact on the shortfall”.
His guidance referenced Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpot (163:3) which details the need for everyone in a community to support the essential communal infrastructure, specifically including schools. This takes precedence over Mitzvas Tzedokoh and applies to everyone in the community, whether they have children in schools or not.
For further information about this initiative for your school or kehillo, please contact Eli Katz or Emanuel Meyer, on email@example.com or 07973 632364.