Rutgers Hillel launches ‘JeRsey StRong’ for Sandy relief

Rutgers Hillel launches ‘JeRsey StRong’ for Sandy relief

IN THE DAYS following Sandy, Rutgers Hillel on the university’s New Brunswick campus launched JeRsey StRong — with capital Rs for Rutgers — to raise money and awareness and plan projects to provide relief for victims of the storm in New Jersey.

“This campaign is about students expressing their Jewish values by directly engaging in efforts to help the areas affected by the superstorm,” said Rutgers Hillel president Raffi Mark. “We wanted to focus our efforts on our Rutgers community and throughout the state because so many of our students were affected. Many students were evacuated from their dorms, others went home to places that did not have power. Some had families evacuated from their homes.”

Hillel is selling “JeRsey StRong” T-shirts to raise funds and is serving as a collection site for clothing, nonperishable food items, and toiletries for Hurricane victims.

On Oct. 31, with only 90 minutes’ notice, Rutgers Hillel arranged a kosher barbecue for students who had lost power and needed a hot meal; 150 attended. A crowd gathered Nov. 6 for “De-stress Your Mind and Soothe Your Soul,” a community outreach event offering homemade chicken soup while participants watched election returns.

Among the other programs scheduled were a JeRsey StRong-themed free Shabbat dinner, a bone marrow registry and blood drive, a sandwich-making session to feed those displaced by the storm, an interfaith panel exploring God’s role in natural disasters, and a JeRsey StRong community rally.

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