"White Noise"

There I was recently, walking around our Jewish Family Service of Central New Jersey. A beautiful building – whose work isn’t limited to the building itself. With skill and compassion they help thousands of people in our community. The elderly, families, those in need.

As you walk along the corridors of the treatment area, you see these little white pods in front of each room. They’re white noise machines. They help filter out the background noise when people need focused conversations in treatment.

It was one of those machines that I took with me last week to a meeting with the leaders of our community. At our annual Pacesetters Dinner, for major donors of $50,000 and above to the annual campaign, I talked about who we are and what we do. But the problem, I said, is that it seems like we do so much. We help so many. We work in so many places. It can all get overwhelming. How do you connect to anything if you connect to everything?

But we don’t need to do list after list of we-do-this, and we-do-that.

And the white noise device was a helpful reminder of that. Because like the little machines, we focus on what’s important. We only do three things. We care. We build. And we save. And programs with child psychiatrists, social workers, building trusting and caring environments to build nurturing families and individuals … are the core and heart of all these three things.

There are many who do some of these three. There are many more who do none. But very few do all three – and I met the pacesetters of that generosity last week. It left me moved, inspired and grateful.

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