Student perspectives

A Tradition of Giving Back

I want to take this opportunity to discuss the importance of giving back and how we can all make a positive impact. Thanks to everybody who took time out of their busy schedules to make the event tonight. It means a lot, and you are already making an impact. 

I know that each and every one of you is similar to me in that ALL of us want to have a positive impact on something/some place in the world, whatever the scale. Giving back is critically important to the future of any cause and/or organization, because without it, it would likely cease to exist. Giving back is not necessarily a financial obligation; you can volunteer, network on its behalf, etc. Giving back is both a way to say thanks for the experiences we’ve had AND ensures that what is here today will exist tomorrow (and, hopefully, in an enhanced state). Giving back strengthens community ties, brings people together, and leads to positive outcomes across the board. 

As Jews, we believe in the importance of pursuing a righteous path. We believe that the world is built on kindness, decency, and mutual respect. We believe in the importance of good deeds/mitzvot. A mitzvah is not ranked and/or rated based on the impact and/or dollar amount associated with it. Every donation and/or mitzvah is regarded with the same respect and gratitude. 

The budget for Chabad in Austin rests solely on Rabbi Johnson’s shoulders. It is his job to ensure that all of the traditional Jewish festivities and other events take place so that the younger generations, the people that come after us, can experience what we experienced first-hand. We all enjoyed our time there; let’s make sure that those that follow us do as well! These events and all of the other great things come at a price.

You are not limited in the way(s) you can give back, so please do what you can. If you have any questions, please feel free to come up to Rabbi Johnson and/or me. 

Thank you for your time.


Jonathan Itzhakov is a member of the Chabad alumni board. 

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