Jewish Community Donates Items to Haiti Earthquake Victims

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jewish community haiti

Massive amounts of food and hygiene items donated by the Jewish community have been loaded into shipping containers and will soon be sent to Haiti to help victims of the recent earthquake.

“The Haitian community and the Jewish community live together in Spring Valley,” said Rockland County Legislator Aron Wieder, an organizer of the relief effort. “We pray together and we mourn together. We rejoice together and we help each other out. Today we are all Haitians.”

Two 40-foot containers containing shelf-stable food and hygiene items were unloaded from delivery trucks in the parking lot outside Spring Valley Village Hall last week. The goods were then loaded into shipping containers that will be sent to Haiti.

Legislator Wieder (D-Spring Valley), New York State Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein (D-Brooklyn), Masbia Food Network Executive Director Alexander Rapaport, local Haitian Pastors, and members of the Haitian and Hasidic community, among others, had announced a massive drive to benefit Haiti on Tuesday. The New York Jewish community has already pledged more than $1 million worth of relief to this effort.

The pallets of food were donated by the KayCo, which includes the Kedem and Manischewitz labels. KayCo’s Executive Vice President, Charles Herzog, said the company felt compelled to help.

“We have an obligation and honor to step up to the plate and assist communities in need and crisis,” Herzog said. “It’s the core tenet of who we are as a Jewish owned company, and we are humbled that we’re in a position to give a hand and share a smile with fellow humans in need.”

Bishop Paul D. Laplante of the First Haitian Church of G-d of Middletown is sponsoring the shipment of one of the containers.

“It’s over 90 degrees outside, but we have wonderful young volunteers packing two container-loads of supplies and food,” Rapaport said. “This is the first round that we are sending as a community effort to Haiti. We still have a lot of supply pledged. What we need is help to pay for cargo.”

The packed delivery trucks were unloaded by forklift and by about half a dozen students attending Yeshiva Degal Hatorah in Spring Valley, accompanied by their principal, Rabbi Moshe Schwab.

“They gave up their learning time and they came here to help people so the people of Haiti should have food,” Rabbi Schwab said. “And that’s what we want to teach our young generation, that they have to take the responsibility. When a person is in trouble, you lend them a shoulder. You put a shoulder to it, and you help the person out.”

The boxes were spray-painted the the words, “With Love From the Jewish Community.”

More than 2,200 people have so far been confirmed dead after the 7.2 earthquake hit Haiti on August 14. More than 12,000 people have been injured and more than 53,000 houses, as well as entire towns, have been destroyed. Hospitals and aid organizations have been overwhelmed with people seeking shelter, medical care, food and clean drinking water.

Members of Konbit Neg Lakay of Spring Valley and Rockland Haiti Relief will go to Haiti to make sure the donations get to the people who need them. Members of the Haitian American Nurses Association of the Hudson Valley are expected to soon head to Haiti to help and may help distribute some of the donations.

People may donate supplied by bringing items to Konbit Neg Lakay, 16 E. Church St., Spring Valley.

Donations can be made online via  Masbia’s website, or at the Rockland County Haiti Relief’s Go Fund Me Page

Checks can be made out to “Rockland County Haiti Relief” and mailed to

Konbit Neg Lakay

16 E. Church St.

Spring Valley, NY 10977

Photos courtesy of Office of Legislator Aron Wieder

jewish community haiti
Rockland County Legislator Aron Wieder
jewish community haiti
Students from Yeshiva Degal Hatorah in Spring Valley, with their principal Rabbi Moshe Schwab.
jewish community haiti
Yeshiva students load boxes of donated items.
jewish community haiti
Yeshiva students spray paint boxes of donated items with the words, “With love from the Jewish community.”
jewish community haiti
Masbia Executive Director Alexander Rapaport