Whoever gives the poor money is blessed sixfold; whoever does it with a kind word is blessed sevenfold. - Talmud
Co-Chairs: Lianne Anderson and Michael Langendorf,
Members: Karen Aprill, Iris Band, Judi Laufhutte, Lee Melhado, Janis Topolosky, Janie Yairi.
Ex-Officio: Jessica Kopolow
The Human Services Committee attempts to address the diverse human needs of our community with insight and compassion. Committee activities include assessment and referral to appropriate social services as well as assistance with necessities such as food, housing, childcare, transportation and medical care through emergency loans and direct third party payments. The HSC also compiles and distributes an annual brochure of camp opportunities and summer camp scholarships. In addition, a committee representative attends CUJF & Sinai Temple’s annual Camp Fair to promote awareness of available assistance. The committee recognizes the sensitive nature of its mission and maintains strict confidentiality in all proceedings. Those served during FY 2010-2011 included:
• A long-term disabled client who fell behind on her power bill.
• A young, low-income single mother who requested help with partial payment of her rent.
• A long-term client, retiree with multiple health problems who requested assistance with payment of a Medicare premium.
• A family that moved to Champaign-Urbana from New York who requested assistance with relocation, lodging and subsequent payment of rent and security deposit for a rented house in Urbana. Employment counseling was provided to the adult members of the family.
• A former refugee who lost income and does not have any relatives in the U.S. requested assistance with payment of her rent.
• A large family of immigrants whose head of household is employed but ill requested assistance with rent.
• A woman newly discharged from the hospital after having many extensive surgeries who requested assistance with purchase of special food.
• A long-term client who requested assistance with payment of real estate tax, homeowner’s insurance premium, utilities, sewer and fire department bills, and assistance with partial payment of a medical bill. The client also requested assistance with travel expenses while visiting a gravely ill relative.
• An individual with psychological problems who has lived on disability income requested assistance with payments for medication and an Amtrak ticket.
• An individual who experienced reduced work hours requested assistance for payment of his rent.
• A woman with disability requested assistance with payment of her water bill.
• Two long-term clients with disability who requested emergency assistance with payment of their utility bills.
• A number of individuals stranded in Champaign who requested assistance with Greyhound and Amtrak tickets.
• A professional from a local service agency who requested our assistance with lodging for two individuals.
As in previous years, the committee worked with Sinai Temple to best coordinate camp scholarship monies and to maximize the number of children served by the community. The committee provided one scholarship to a first time camper and two scholarships to Camp Tavor. The rest of the scholarships came from Sinai-owned endowments and the Shapiro Fund of the C-U Jewish Endowment Foundation. The HSC also compiles and distributes an annual brochure of camp opportunities and summer camp scholarships. The committee recognizes the sensitive nature of its mission and maintains strict confidentiality in all proceedings.
Over the past year, the committee has seen a marked increase in requests for assistance from vulnerable members of our community as well as from other segments of the local population. As always, we recognize and remain grateful for the concern and generous contributions of our community in supporting our efforts. Donate here