By Menachem Gordon
As a parent, you naturally want to give your children everything, or at least as much as you are capable of providing them. You do these things because we are giving beings and would do almost anything to see our children smile. Perhaps sometimes they are even deserving, but that is not essential. You do your best to make each Shabbos and yom tov something special and enjoyable for them. And there’s little that is more rewarding than playing and spending time with the children and watching them enjoy themselves. On a Sunday afternoon there’s nothing like teaching your kid how to ride a bike for the first time or how to play baseball.
Unfortunately, there are families that are not able to take these simple things for granted. There are children who have lost a parent, tragically, or sometimes both. There are parents who have never experienced a pressure-free day in their lives either because of health or parnassa issues—sometimes both.
These situations are far more common than many of us think. There are households that appear wholesome and good; they have both parents, there’s food in the refrigerator, and from the outside everything looks average or at least normal. Their parents are not walking door-to-door collecting money for themselves; these parents are working long, sometimes excruciating schedules just to get by. They are not the type of people who would even think about asking anyone for assistance. They do not take money from organizations that are made for aniyim because these families are not aniyim. Baruch Hashem, there are many organizations that cater to or assist the destitute, but there does not seem to be any group or organization that exists to help those who feel they are falling through the cracks.
Just imagine having to tell your 10-year-old son that he can’t go to sleepaway camp or even day camp with all his friends this summer because there just isn’t enough money. Imagine not having a suit for Shabbos or yom tov. Imagine not going on a chol hamoed trip with the family. Yes, it’s hard to even think of, but there are so many families going through this as I write. But what are we here for? Hashem isn’t looking down and smiling when one of us buys a new car or an expensive house. Hashem is looking down and crying because He has children who are suffering. He has children crying themselves to sleep at night. For us to let this go on in our own neighborhoods is disgraceful. If you didn’t know this was going on, well, now you do.
How many kids even know the value of money? I can tell you after working for a camp as a counselor that even some of the older kids have absolutely no idea about the value of money and think that just because they are who they are, they deserve the $500 suit and they deserve all the new video games and gaming systems. The sad thing is they assume this mindset because they are given these things from the time they are babies. This isn’t a lesson on parenting because that wouldn’t be my place to comment on, but I’m laying out the simple facts.
That’s where “Komocha” comes into the picture. Our aim is to quietly and in the most discreet way give these families a boost, raise them out of the doldrums, and create a positive and happy environment.
But we are just a bunch of 16- and 17-year-old kids ourselves. We know best where help is needed, though. First, however, we need you to make it possible, so we’re asking you to donate and make this dream of ours a reality. For more information, write firstname.lastname@example.org.