Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Challah for Hunger Kick Off

Good afternoon, fellow Mitzvah-minded people!

If you’re mouth is already watering from a taste of Tzedek Tuesdays, hold that appetite for this Friday at our Challah for Hunger Kick-off Event in the Plaza of Americas from 11:00am to 2:00pm.

So what is Challah for Hunger? Let’s break it down.

1) Challah: Challah is special, braided egg bread traditionally eaten by European Jews on Shabbat. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Challah) Fresh baked Challah in the Plaza of Americas is available every Friday starting at 11:00am for a $4.00 donation. We bake all unique flavors!

2) Hunger: A compelling need or desire for food. (Something you may be experiencing Fridays around 11:00am) Challah for Hunger truly addresses the problem of food insecurity, defined by the US Census Bureau as “not always having enough food to meet basic needs.” International hunger needs can even be more overwhelming, especially in underdeveloped and developing countries plagued with overpopulation, natural disasters, disease, and violence. Challah for Hunger sends half of its proceeds to qualm hunger in Darfur through the American Jewish World Service.

There are over 1,300 homeless people in Alachua County, and just over one-third of them are children. This is an alarming statistic. However, not only homeless people benefit from hunger relief programs in Alachua County. Over 22,000 people in Alachua County receive food stamps and are still in line for more benefits from non-governmental outlets.

Over 4,817,100 refugees live in dire needs in Sudan today according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Genocide and interstate violence has been present in Darfur since 2003. Warrants for International War Crimes have been issued for the government’s highest leaders. A voting referendum took place this month with an outcome for the southern part of the country – where almost all the refugees reside – to secede and create its own state.

Where your money goes?

ALL proceeds go straight to hunger relief efforts. Half of these proceeds benefit people in Alachua County through Bread of the Mighty Food Bank (http://www.breadofthemighty.org/). The other half of the proceeds made benefits Darfur refugee relief efforts through the American Jewish World Service (http://ajws.org/emergencies/darfur/).

Look for more Tzedek Tuesday blogs about Hunger and Homelessness Issues. Also a great thanks to Sarah Pollack, our Challah for Hunger chair for making this happen each week on the UF Campus! Also thank you to Pammie Shapiro for spearheading Hillel’s Darfur awareness initiatives.

Interested in more ways to learn about how to help hunger needs locally?
Here are some great websites to check out!

St. Francis House: http://www.stfrancishousegnv.org/
Interfaith Hospitality Network: http://www.ihngvl.org/
Alachua County Coalition for the Homeless and Hungry: http://www.alachuahomeless.com/index.html
Alachua County Hunger Abatement Plan: http://issuu.com/ljsmith/docs/2009_hap_june_3_final_edition

Weekly Tzedek Tip!

Donate $4.00 this (and every) Friday and enjoy a delicious Challah. Help volunteer for Challah for Hunger every Thursday and Friday.

Thursday: Dough-making and braiding 11:00am at Hillel
                  Baking 6:30pm at Hillel
Friday: Volunteer in Plaza of the Americas from 11:00am to 2:00pm. (Friday volunteers get discounted Challah!)

Green Bags! Green bags aren’t just for grocery shopping. Bring them with you to the mall, pharmacy, convenience store, or any place else you normally use a plastic bag.

Contact Emily Sasser for more Social Action or Community Service oriented ideas for Hillel at esasser5@me.com.


  1. This is a wonderful campaign! Hatzlacha rabah! Please contact me if you would like to organize a UFHillel trip to Israel that would combine touring with helping the hungry of Israel.

    You can contact me at ayelets@eitan-tours.com
    Eitan-Tours is a tour operator that is devoted to giving back to the community through our tours. We incorporate volunteer and chesed opportunities into each group tour and we donate 10% of the profits of each trip to a charity of the group's choice.

    I would be honored to be able to serve the Hillel community!


  2. Ayelet,
    This sounds amazing. We already promote trips to Israel through multiple programs, but this one sounds especially unique. Can't wait for more information.

    Challah for Hunger is also a national organization that may be interested in supporting this, as well. The website is challahforhunger.org

  3. Thank you Emily! I will contact them!