Apr 7, 2009

Sde Tzofim - a unique kehilla for Baalei Teshuva in Israel

The following post is a post that has been sponsored by Sde Tzofim. The post will stay on top for a period of time. New posts will continue to be posted, so be sure to scroll down. Also, be sure to patronize Sde Tzofim with a visit and consider donating to their important cause.

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With Pesach approaching, it is time for us to give our kimcha d'pischa.

There is a unique kehilla in Beitar called Sde Tzofim. Sde Tzofim started out as a yeshiva for baaeli teshuva, but turned into a kehilla. The Rosh Yeshiva realized these students had no family to turn to, no supporting base to build upon. Instead of just bringing them to frumkeit and letting them deal with their personal issues on their own, he built a kehilla so they would have such a personal and emotional foundation and support base.

The yeshiva helps the students find jobs, and works out learning schedules around the job schedules. Yet these students, without family to rely on, without family to help them, find it especially difficult during the expensive holiday season to be able to afford the basic items necessary for the holiday. We all know how expensive it is to make Pesach - the matza alone could make some people take out a second mortgage! And then there is the food, the cleaning, perhaps a new outfit for a child or for a wife, etc. It is beyond the means of these baalei teshuva to make Pesach.

Giving your kimcha d'pischa (or at least some of it) to Sde Tzofim to help these baalei teshuva is definitely going to be helping some poor baalei teshuva have some simchas yom tov.

See the Sde Tzofim website for more details about this wonderful and necessary kehilla, and consider sending them a donation. They can accept credit card donations, online or offline, as well.


  1. Rafi,

    While this sounds like a wonderful cause we must remember that especially in these times Aniyei Ircha Kodmim!
    I spoke with someone from Lema'an Achai who told me that it is becoming difficult to raise funds to help the local RBSA families.
    If we give from the less that many have to a kehilla in Beitar who will give locally?
    Please everyone out there give to Lema'an Achai and other local organziations and then if you have tons left over consider giving outside of our community.

  2. 1. this is a sponsored post. I did not say they have halachic priority over other organizations, just consider donating.
    2. there are plenty of readers from places other than Bet Shemesh and RBS - including Beitar.
    3. perhaps this is an organization that somebody will feel is something they want to support because they like the idea and objective.

  3. Aniyei-

    Perhaps if Lemaán Achai would spend more time with parades,food sales and promoting the virtues of vodka they would be able to make more money.

    Instead it seems that they spend their time and efforts in helping poor people.

  4. anon
    why do you feel a NEED to attack the kuppa?

    why does LA feel so threatened by the kuppa that they need to attack them over their advertising campaigns?

    Maybe you should follow what you call LA's lead and spend more time helping poor people?

  5. Who is attacking the Kupa?

    I think that their sale is great. But I also know that if Lemaán Achai would have done such a thing they would have been criticized for spending their time and money on something other than tzedaka.

    You can say whatever you wish anon of 12:09 but you know that in charedi circles Lemaán Achai is looked down upon even though they are an amazing organization.

    I daven in an Israeli DL shul and there is always Kupa material for people to see. On the occasions that I daven in Masuas Mordechai there is nothing from Lemaán Achai and from what I understand it isn't because LA doesn't put it there.

    I think it is Kupa supporters who feel threatened and therefore put up 5 story banners everywhere and keep Lemaán Achai out of certain shuls.

    What do they care if Lemaán Achai comes into a shul with posters?

    Who are the real paranoid ones here?

  6. By the way..Kol haKavod on the sale although I was a bit confused.

    All of the paper work says Keren Lev Yisrael but when I got there everything said Kupa.

    Is there a problem with Kupa using its name publicly for a food sale?

    In any case I thank Kupa(or Lev Yisrael or both) for saving me money.

    I thank Lemaán Achai for helping all of those needy people without fanfare. I always thought that they were the bigger organization and didn't need my help but I see now that Kupa seems to be doing very well.

    Kol Hakavod to both organizations.

  7. Maybe the rabbonim and/or the mispallelim in "those" shuls feel that there is a problem with the way LA does something. Maybe its one meshugana. Maybe youre right and the kuppa feels threatened.

    My question was regarding this post and the comments, in which there was nothing said about the kuppa. It was an ad for a diff tzedakah organization, and someone mentioned - in a comment - about LA - and BAM someone has to come and smash the kuppa. Im not even sure what the point of his comment was EXCEPT to bash the kuppa.

    Regarding your comment that if LA did a sale, they would get bashed - that is debateable. I dont think its true. ALL the kuppot in EY run these sales pesach time. Its pretty standard.

    In fact, most of what I have seen on various blogs and undertones of some advertising material, does not amount to the kuppa running scared from LA. I have not seen anywhere where the kuppa comes out against LA. Now I am not from that part of bet shemesh, but thats my impression.

    Its the LA chevra that feel the need to pick on every stupid thing the kuppa does : they run a sale in which they give food for YT for no profit - BAM its terrible. They use a certain advertising campaign, that is a very popular advertising campaign the world over - BAM its terrible. I mean, come on !! if thats all you say against the kuppa, i guess they are a pretty amazing organization. (NOTE - this is not an invitation to hear ALL the juice on the kuppa. theres no need for that here)

  8. Anon,

    Please don't attribute comments made by individuals on this blog as "LA chevra"".

    They no more represent Lema'an Achai than those who do things against LA in the name of the Kupa represent the Kupa.

    Why can't we all just get along?

  9. Just one comment,

    I think that both lema'an Achai and Kupa do great things.

    I do think however that Kupa plastering Lema'an Achai's fence a second time (they did it on Purim as well) is just "lo naim" and a chutzpa.

    "L'olam y'hee adam"

  10. whatsthedifference?April 05, 2009 12:20 PM

    What's the relationship between the Kupa Shel Tzedaka of RBS A and Keren Lev Yisroel?

    If no-one on this blog knows for sure, could Rafi get us an answer?

  11. I have asked in the past. As far as I can remember, Keren lev Yisrael is a sub-division of the Kupa with its own name and own sponsor. they have such sub-divisions for various specific needs such as for clothing for the needy, and others...
    not a big deal.

  12. Rafi - It may or may not be a big deal.

    I am under the impression that the Kupa Shel Tzedaka is a registered charity, which has recently been approved for tax deductions.

    If Keren Lev Yisrael is a subsidiary, then all its finances would come under third-party scrutiny. No big deal.

    However, if Keren Lev Yisrael is a separate financial entity, which is not tax approved, then the question regarding the relationship between one entity (KST - approved/kosher) and the other (KLY - ???) becomes very significant.

    For example, it might open the door to numerous cross-relationship shinanigins betwewen the two entities.

    As there are millions of shekels of public funds involved, this would be a big deal.

    Rafi - could you perhaps delve a little further?

  13. no. I am not an investigative reporter and I do not understand all the legal or financial issues that would be important for understanding such differences. And frankly, it does not interest me all that much.

    but go ahead if you wish to, and if you find something shocking I would probably be willing to post it...

  14. So, would an official spokesman of either organization, or any budding investigative reporter/detective out there, like to share or find-out what's the relationship between Kupa Shel Tzedaka and Keren Lev Yisrael?

    ("Shocking" info should be passed to Rafi!).

  15. Kupa Supporter...ButApril 06, 2009 3:13 PM

    I think that all tzedaka organizations do good work.

    As a supporter of Kupa, however, I take issue with their overdoing advertising.

    Millions of posters, pamphlets and 10 story banners is NOT 100% tzedaka...it's 100% waste. I don't care if they are "sponsored"..it is a poor way to spend anyone's money.

    I am also getting sick of seeing the name everywhere. They do good work and should be proud of it..I don't need it in my face all of the time.

  16. I don't feel it is right for bloggers to go digging up dirt on tzedaka organizations.

    If the Kupa Shel Tzedaka are doing a good job, and (for the sake of argument) are using Keren Lev Yisrael for get-arounds to avoid outside scrutiny, then I as a donor have no problem with that.

    Kol Hakavod to KST, and people should keep their noses out!!

    Chag kasher vesameach!

  17. Up Front TzedakaApril 07, 2009 2:11 PM

    Kupa Donor,

    While I agrre in gerneral with your post I do take one issue.

    Yes, KST (and Lema'an Achai) both do great things. However KST uses the notion of "100% Tzedaka" as a "ma'alah" over Lema'an Achai.

    We all know that there in no such thing as 100% tzedaka. Everyone has overheads.

    If KST uses Lev Yisrael to cover the fact that they are not 100% Tzedaka then it is a question of Gnaivas Da'as in order to seem as a more worthy recipient of tzedaka funds.

    I persoanlly prefer where there is 100% transparency so I really know where my money is going.

  18. Yes, UpFrontTzedaka - one concern is that having two organizations (one official, the other unofficial) enables the official one to window-dress their numbers for PR purposes. (Such as transfering overhead costs of the unofficial one, as you suggest).

    More concerning though, is that other and more serious financial improprieties are too easily implemented, such as siphoning off funds to cronies.

    Keren Lev Yisrael includes (from the advertising) a Loans Fund (which I believe has a HUGE amount of money in it - rumour has it that it is now over $1 million!) and the Retail Business (the pre-chagim food markets, which is now a multimillion dollar operation).

    In short, who is watching the shop (supervising, overseeing and keeping it straight) at Keren Lev Yisrael??

    Anyone know?


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