From the Desk of CEO Judy Halper: December 2022

From the Desk of CEO Judy Halper

As I write this in mid-December, Minnesota is experiencing its January thaw, and bracing for a bruiser of a snowstorm, all in the scope of a few days. In other words, we’re having a typical Minnesota winter! Chanukah is almost here, and gratefully our JFCS Hag Sameach staff and volunteers have tied the last ribbon and affixed the last piece of tape to the many packages that flew out the door on delivery day. The program ensures that everyone is able to enjoy the holidays (whichever ones they celebrate) with gifts, household necessities, and ritual items. Hundreds of individuals received holiday packages, and many who volunteered had their emotional cups filled up as they assisted in this annual effort.

A local author and financial planner penned an interesting article for the Star Tribune this month (Dec. 11), in which he discusses the psychology of giving and the inner voices we listen to when making the decision to contribute or not. I found the article compelling. As it turns out, the voices in the writer’s head sound a lot like the ones in my head. The process I seem to go through when confronted with the red kettle at the front of my local grocery store ping pongs me back and forth with whether I can, should or will contribute this time, or walk on by. It’s likely that we all listen to our inner voices that have us bouncing back and forth between “should I give this time?” “have I given enough?” and “will this dollar or two make a difference?”

After reading the article and giving it some consideration, I happened to see a commercial on television that offered the following advice: you may not think your donations make a difference, but to someone who is on the receiving end, your donation has made all the difference. In that spirit, I want to thank our generous community members who have responded to JFCS’ Fund-a-Need this year, in which we laid out the numbers and scope of those in our community who are facing financial challenges. We asked you to help, and many of you have done just that. We are grateful – your contributions, big and small, continue to make it possible for JFCS to help, and to remain Here for all. Always.

I wish all of you happy holidays and a very healthy New Year!