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Forum -> Yom Tov / Holidays -> Pesach
Another s/o about middle class affording Pesach
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amother
OP


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:21 pm
In my community, there is a huge clothing sale for families in kollel and chinuch. They can go and get gorgeous new dresses, skirts, suits, etc. for a very low price. This is organized every year before RH and Pesach. It's in addition to all the money and food they get around this time too. It's well organized and run very well.

Last night, a 2nd hand store (similar to Serendipity but much smaller) opened to the public for 1 hour. They have inconsistent hours and hadn't been open for a while.
They advertised you could fill a bag of clothes for $10. I've gone there before and it's always a nice small crowd and organized. Last night, parking was down the block. When I walked in, there was no place to move. There must have been over 100 ladies in there at a time. Over the hour I was there, I think no less than 200 people came through. People were literally grabbing things off the racks.

Every single person I knew (and I knew a lot) were non-kollel, not chinuch families. Those families don't need this because they go to an organized event where there is plenty of selection.

I came away feeling sad. Sad that the only way for middle class people to get clothes is to stuff themselves in a basement and grab things off shelves.

I mentioned my observations to the head of a big chesed organization in town. She didn't understand and said we are so fortunate to have been able to get clothes for $10.

I am not complaining and I BH found some things. But I still found the whole thing unsettling.

Can anyone help me figure out why I was so unsettled about the whole thing?
And from the perspective of the chesed organization I was complaining to, what could/should have done differently?
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groisamomma




 
 
    
 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:28 pm
Nothing. People are struggling and it’s not our business to judge them.
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amother
OP


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:37 pm
groisamomma wrote:
Nothing. People are struggling and it’s not our business to judge them.


But I'm struggling too. That is part of what made me feel unsettled. That so many of us are struggling and this is what we get.
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amother
Lightyellow


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:42 pm
What part bothered you? That so many needed it? That it is poorly run while chinuch was organized?

Honestly we accept Tomchei. Husband lost job. Where I live they have a special sale for Tomchei recipients to get sale clothing. I show up and tons of clearly not Tomchei people were there. Yes, I can't judge and they probably judged me. But I happen to be very close with some of them and they explained that a friend runs it and got them in.
Why am I bothered? Not because more people got help. But because of the embarrassment. They didn't "need" the same way I can't put food on the table.
I wouldn't mind if they did a second sale for middle income earners and former Tomchei families. But I was embarrassed they saw me....
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amother
Poppy


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:43 pm
If chinuch and kli kodesh families have it so good why don’t you become a morah too?
I’m sure there is a need in your community for you or your husband to help the klal.
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amother
Forestgreen


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 2:46 pm
The entire tzedaka/organizations systems in our communities our skewed.
Kollel/chinuch aren't automatically struggling, and working families aren't automatically doing well.
Something needs to change.
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amother
Daylily


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 3:05 pm
Because it’s sad. It’s even sadder that most of those at the sale were probably 2 parent working families who don’t have time and energy to shop around for sales (I do it, it’s a full time job) and/or suck out every program. Also they are mostly not young ones who are more likely have family and networking to help them out.
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rgr




 
 
    
 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 3:36 pm
The chinuch sale probably had more years to perfect their system.

If the $10 sale was a success hopefully next year it will be more organized
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amother
Mintcream


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 3:49 pm
rgr wrote:
The chinuch sale probably had more years to perfect their system.

If the $10 sale was a success hopefully next year it will be more organized


Yes!
If this happened in Baltimore I can tell you that I am eligible for the chinuch/kollel clothing sales and went this year and in the past and yes it's a huge pleasure but wasn't always that way. It used to be a big balagan, you had to line up an hour before opening to get in and get good stuff and people are grabbing etc etc. They tweaked and perfected and it's a pleasure now. And so appreciated even though it doesn't completely fill our needs since you can only get one outfit per child. Maybe the organizers of the $10 sale can talk to the organizers of the chinuch sale and get tips/advice or even use of the spacious location (a school) where the chinuch sale took place.
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amother
Caramel


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 4:24 pm
amother Poppy wrote:
If chinuch and kli kodesh families have it so good why don’t you become a morah too?
I’m sure there is a need in your community for you or your husband to help the klal.


Not everyone is able to be a morah
What are you trying to say?
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amother
Poppy


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 4:48 pm
amother Caramel wrote:
Not everyone is able to be a morah
What are you trying to say?


I have a suggestion for everyone who looks at the morahs, rebbis, Kollel families and feels like what they get is not as good.

I have never heard of a school who has too many people applying to work for them. If you can’t teach I’m sure there are assistants needed, secretaries or you can volunteer.

Then you can live the life of luxury.
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amother
Chartreuse


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 5:06 pm
OP, I think you are unsettled about the desperation that was on display. When a sale like this is well organized and calm, it feels more like normal. When a regular sale is crazy like this, it feels out of control, but the desperation doesn't hit as hard as when it's happening because people are in need. We are humans with human dignity, and most tzedakah and other aid programs are set up to maximize that, because it is known that the lack of dignity combined with the need can be too much. As mentioned by others, I hope that the need seen this year will prompt doing it again but in a more organized way. If you have the capability, offer to help in some way.
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amother
Petunia


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 5:13 pm
amother Mintcream wrote:
Yes!
If this happened in Baltimore I can tell you that I am eligible for the chinuch/kollel clothing sales and went this year and in the past and yes it's a huge pleasure but wasn't always that way. It used to be a big balagan, you had to line up an hour before opening to get in and get good stuff and people are grabbing etc etc. They tweaked and perfected and it's a pleasure now. And so appreciated even though it doesn't completely fill our needs since you can only get one outfit per child. Maybe the organizers of the $10 sale can talk to the organizers of the chinuch sale and get tips/advice or even use of the spacious location (a school) where the chinuch sale took place.

Ummm I live in Baltimore and it was never line up for an hour etc. It used to be that each girl got a robe and a dress, not one or the other, but now BH so many qualify that it’s robe or dress. Boys always got pants/vest or suit and shirt and tzitzis. Yes, with the sign up system now it’s much more smooth and I really appreciate the extras that are available-like socks and sometimes other things. I’ve never had the experience of waiting for an hour or anything like you describe. Please remember they’re doing you a favor, if you don’t like it don’t go.
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amother
Cerise


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 5:21 pm
Williamsburg has this every once in a while and it’s usually very empty. Maybe one person at a time. I’ve considered adding my used clothes but honestly I have no idea where the leftovers go.
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amother
Jetblack


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 5:31 pm
amother OP wrote:
In my community, there is a huge clothing sale for families in kollel and chinuch. They can go and get gorgeous new dresses, skirts, suits, etc. for a very low price. This is organized every year before RH and Pesach. It's in addition to all the money and food they get around this time too. It's well organized and run very well.

Last night, a 2nd hand store (similar to Serendipity but much smaller) opened to the public for 1 hour. They have inconsistent hours and hadn't been open for a while.
They advertised you could fill a bag of clothes for $10. I've gone there before and it's always a nice small crowd and organized. Last night, parking was down the block. When I walked in, there was no place to move. There must have been over 100 ladies in there at a time. Over the hour I was there, I think no less than 200 people came through. People were literally grabbing things off the racks.

Every single person I knew (and I knew a lot) were non-kollel, not chinuch families. Those families don't need this because they go to an organized event where there is plenty of selection.

I came away feeling sad. Sad that the only way for middle class people to get clothes is to stuff themselves in a basement and grab things off shelves.

I mentioned my observations to the head of a big chesed organization in town. She didn't understand and said we are so fortunate to have been able to get clothes for $10.

I am not complaining and I BH found some things. But I still found the whole thing unsettling.

Can anyone help me figure out why I was so unsettled about the whole thing?
And from the perspective of the chesed organization I was complaining to, what could/should have done differently?


I was there too and feel the same as you.
BH I was able to get a few things and am appreciative.
What bothers me is the chinuch sale - I'm not a morah so I can't go. But I know people who go because yes they teach a class in a school or even run a playgroup out of their home, but their husband's are drs/lawyers/etc very well off. They work in a school for the tuition discount. If you work part time as morah/even playgroup assistant, you get 50% off tuition so it makes sense financially, especially if you have a few kids of same gender. So yes, kol hakavod, and they are invited to mechanchim sale. I do not work in that line and desperately could use those sales. So the kids I couldn't find for at the sale last night, will NOT be getting new clothes for YT. Neither will I. Their lives are definitely more luxurious than mine. It bothers me.
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amother
Mintcream


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 5:37 pm
amother Petunia wrote:
Ummm I live in Baltimore and it was never line up for an hour etc. It used to be that each girl got a robe and a dress, not one or the other, but now BH so many qualify that it’s robe or dress. Boys always got pants/vest or suit and shirt and tzitzis. Yes, with the sign up system now it’s much more smooth and I really appreciate the extras that are available-like socks and sometimes other things. I’ve never had the experience of waiting for an hour or anything like you describe. Please remember they’re doing you a favor, if you don’t like it don’t go.


Yes it was Petunia. I've been going for well over 15 years and yes we used to line up an hour in advance. FACT that you can't dispute. The current sign up system is an absolute pleasure. Your last sentence is nonsense in response to my post. Far from saying I don't like it I was saying how much I appreciate it. I have gone for years and will continue to go as long as they run it and I am eligible. But don't invalidate my very real experience that dozens of others share. I brought it up specifically to explain how things evolve for the better with feedback and experience. That was very clear from my post and I don't appreciate you trying to twist my words to make me seem like an ingrate. You could not be more off base.
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amother
Hyacinth


 

Post Fri, Apr 05 2024, 6:01 pm
When I lived in far rockaway there was an amazing family who did something similar and gave everyone a robe a dress and shoes or something like that. It was so nice. I am forever grateful.

Where I live out of town we don’t have anything like that.
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amother
Hawthorn


 

Post Sat, Apr 06 2024, 4:27 pm
OP these kind of Tzedaka shops should be by invite only. I was listening to Zev Brenner and the Flatbush Tzedaka committee. Where do you draw a line. Are you poor if you Never go away . Are you poor if your in Laws paid for the ticket. Are you poor if you went to Pennsylvania and not Barbados? People might think they are poor if they go shopping in this store you wrote about.
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amother
Navy


 

Post Sat, Apr 06 2024, 6:37 pm
Am I the only person who lives in a place where Tomchei, the town tzedakah fund and kimche is given to anyone who needs regardless of their job?

I've had times when we had to ask and we were accepted with no questions. I have friends where both husband and wife are in chinuch who don't get.

It's not automatic that kollel/chinuch families get while others don't.
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amother
Begonia


 

Post Sat, Apr 06 2024, 8:20 pm
amother Poppy wrote:
I have a suggestion for everyone who looks at the morahs, rebbis, Kollel families and feels like what they get is not as good.

I have never heard of a school who has too many people applying to work for them. If you can’t teach I’m sure there are assistants needed, secretaries or you can volunteer.

Then you can live the life of luxury.


Im not sure if you’re serious but where I live it’s usually just for Kodesh teachers/ rebbeim. No idea why but it’s not about contributing to the school and if you volunteer you’re not getting sales and perks.
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