Questions tagged [tzedakah-charity]

The mitzvah of charity, generally giving to the poor, In Hebrew צדקה, literally meaning "justice or righteousness."

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25
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1answer
385 views

What do you do if you made a Tzedaka pledge and now the organization folded?

Recently a friend of mine asked me the following question. He pledged $500- to a Yeshiva, yet before he paid the pledge the Yeshiva closed. Does he still have to pay his pledge to another Tzedaka or ...
17
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3answers
438 views

Is the Mitzvah of Tzedakah fulfilled in a fraud?

If someone gives Tzedakah to a person or fund, without knowing that that person or fund is deceiving them, is the Mitzvah still fulfilled? And a very practical application: If maaser money was used, ...
15
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3answers
865 views

Jewish definition of a charity

I know that Jews are supposed to give 10% of their income to charity, but what constitutes a charity? I know that Shuls, Jewish schools and poor people in your community count, but what about secular ...
15
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1answer
1k views

Why don't we say a blessing before giving charity?

Before doing many mitzvos (commandments), we are required derabanan to say a blessing. Why is this not the same for giving tzedakah (charity)?
14
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5answers
274 views

Giving over 20% to Tzedakkah

We are supposed to give between 10 and 20% of your income to צדקה. Does this mean that you are not allowed to give over 20% if you have enough money to do so? If so, why not? (this is more of a ...
14
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3answers
3k views

Maaser Deductibles

Are there any expenses that one is allowed to "deduct" from his income before calculating the amount of Maaser one must give? For example, if one makes a hundred thousand dollars a year, but his ...
13
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2answers
589 views

Why did Moshe Rabbeinu object to the mirrors, but not the kumaz?

Why did Moshe Rabbeinu balk when the women wanted to donate their mirrors to the construction of the Mishkan (Rashi, Shemot 38:8), but not when the women donated their kumaz (Shemot 35:22), which were ...
13
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4answers
601 views

“Is the market-based distribution of income fair or unfair?”

This post, by a leading economist, lists the main differences on economic policy between the right and left-leaning economists. On many economic issues, Judaism does not necessarily take a clear ...
13
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4answers
568 views

Ma'aser kesafim on capital appreciation

If you own property (e.g. stocks or real estate) that increase in value over the course of the year, are you require to donate 10% of the increase to tzedaka, if you are merely holding on to the ...
13
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3answers
602 views

Giving Tzedakah with a Credit Card

If one gives a donation to a charity by using a credit card, the charity will only end up getting a percentage of the actual funds (e.g. 98%). In such a case, does the person giving get "credit" for ...
12
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10answers
514 views

How do you deal with huge numbers of calls from tzedaka organizations?

We get at least 20 calls per day that show up on the caller ID without a name and with either no phone number or a number with a New York metro area code. We usually don't bother answering such calls ...
12
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1answer
403 views

What happened to Rabbi Akiva's money?

The Gemara in Nedarim (50a) lists six sources of wealth from which Rabbi Akiva became exceedingly wealthy, including half of Ben Kalba Savua's money (Kesuvos, 63a). Rashi on Bechoros (58a) maintains ...
12
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4answers
338 views

Are there halachos which specify who is qualified for tzedakah?

Following a very interesting and animated discussion at the Shabbos table this past Friday night, I wanted to delve more into the halachos of who is an oni? I understand very clearly from the Neviim ...
12
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1answer
126 views

Giving money to a poor tinok she-nishba

Bob is an observant Jew. Jim is completely secular Jew, who has never been observant. Jim is poor, and has trouble making ends meet most of the time. Is Bob allowed to give Jim tzedakah, knowing ...
12
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1answer
250 views

Supporting new charities

There are myriad charities out there. If a community has multiple Shuls, schools, Mikvaoth, food pantries, and גמ"חs, and new entities open up fulfilling the same role(s), and the new entities' ...
11
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4answers
1k views

Does Ma'aser need to be given on gifts?

If I receive a monetary gift, do I need to give ma'aser on it? What about if I receive a gift that is an object (as opposed to money)?
11
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2answers
1k views

What is a “Rabbi Meir Bal Hanes” tzedaka?

I have seen several Tzedaka organizations calling themselves something like "Colel Chabad (or Kupas Ha'Ir) Rabbi Meir Baal Haness Charity". What does it mean that it is a "Rabbi Meir Baal Haness" ...
10
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1answer
1k views

Source that those without a genuine need soliciting charity is a good thing

Judaism 101 says (and I have heard it many times): Judaism acknowledges that many people who ask for charity have no genuine need. In fact, the Talmud suggests that this is a good thing: if all ...
10
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2answers
245 views

Allowed to help prepare / serve “milk and meat” meal in homeless shelter?

Imagine a case in which one is invited to volunteer with a group that is preparing and serving a meal at a homeless shelter. The group has decided on a menu that includes milk and meat together in ...
10
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2answers
226 views

Give ma'aser on money that you didn't make yet?

Can I give ma'aser on money that I didn't earn yet but I know I will be earning in the future?
10
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2answers
226 views

Obligation of community to support those who study Torah?

Is the community obligated to support financially those who study Torah all day long? Is one allowed to request such support from the community based on his choice to study full-day and not make a ...
10
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1answer
100 views

Scrutinising the legitimacy/cause of a charity collector

In many synagogues that I frequent charity collectors come round collecting money for themselves, families or other causes. They often have a certificate declaring the legitimacy of their cause (...
10
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1answer
185 views

Can one take any money offered to him?

Is a tzedaka allowed to take money from people who earn their money in inappropriate way (say, the person worked on Shabbos, stole, cheated, etc.) If not, is this a chumra or a halacha? Please ...
10
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1answer
233 views

Are Jews allowed to contribute to the reconstruction of the Paris cathedral?

I assume most of you have already heard about the sad events that happened yesterday in France. One of the main symbols of Paris, a functioning cathedral caught on fire and caused huge damage to the ...
10
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1answer
187 views

Maaser to your own employer

I know there are many Jews who work for schools, synagogues, soup kitchens, and other such non-profit organizations that do a community service. Many people also give maaser money to these ...
9
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2answers
4k views

Why do we give tzedakah money to someone to pass along in Israel?

Reuven is planning a trip to Israel. Shimon, knowing this, gives Reuven money for tzedakah with the expectation that Reuven will distribute it when he gets to Israel. Reuven and Shimon both ...
9
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2answers
248 views

Giving charity to someone about whom the giver knows nothing?

I often pass by a Jewish store where a person is standing outside asking for tzedaka/charity. Call me cynical but I have no way of knowing A)if the person is really poor, B) if the person is Jewish ...
9
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3answers
2k views

Does a poor person have to give Maaser?

If someone can't finish the month financially, and has to borrow or take gifts in order to feed his family, does he still have to give Maaser from his salary?
9
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2answers
135 views

Is there a halachic time limit for sending an organization its charity box money?

Many Jewish organizations distribute tzedaka (charity) boxes. A few that I know tell people, "collect the money and at some point, empty the money and mail us a check." Let's say someone leaves this ...
9
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2answers
187 views

Tzadakkah questions (flyers in mail)

What is one's halachic obligation based on Rambam Hilchos Matanos Anayim 10:3, "do not turn away…", when one receives tzedakkah flyers in the mail for many different types of causes? In ...
9
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2answers
141 views

Is it still tzedakah if it is returned?

If a poor person asks for charity and I give some money to that person, but he then returns it to me, (because he doesn't feel it is enough, or any other reason) have I accomplished the mitzvah of ...
9
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2answers
179 views

Matanos L'Evyonim

What constitutes a poor person? If someone is a student, and they are living off of loans without a current income, are they considered poor and could one fulfill the mitzvah of Matanos L'Evyonim by ...
8
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8answers
940 views

Reliable Tzedakah Websites [closed]

If one is looking to give Tzedakah (charity) without leaving their chair, which reliable Jewish organizations accept donations through their websites?
8
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1answer
638 views

If you use money for kaparos pre-yom kipur, is it fungible or must those bills go directly to tzedaka?

When we do Kaparos, we say "this money shall go to charity" -- so I put that dollar bill in the tzedaka box; is it okay if a few days from now I count what's in my tzedaka box, write a check for the ...
8
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2answers
228 views

Tzedakah Commission

Is someone who is collecting Tzedakah (charity) allowed to take a commission for his/herself? And if so: Is there a source for the permissibility of such commissions? Is there a maximum percentage ...
8
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2answers
325 views

Source for # times chai?

I often see donation requests with amounts in multiples of $18. I would like to know the source for giving charity of the numeric value of the Hebrew word chai (18) and its multiples.
8
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1answer
638 views

Mikveh fees as Ma'aser

I have recently started a Ma'aser account - a separate bank account that I transfer 10% of any income into and is readily available for giving to Tzedaka and I now use to give instead of coming direct ...
8
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1answer
234 views

What's the halacha with regards to Maaser for a Baal Teshuvah?

Say a person never gave charity, due to ignorance or whatever other reason. He has now become a Baal Teshuvah and started observing the Torah. What is the halacha with charity? Does he have to give ...
8
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1answer
143 views

Collecting Tzedakah from someone who may (or may not) be mentally incompetent

I just witnessed something I thought I'd never see. Someone soliciting signatures on the street for whoknowswhat gently turned someone away. The reason? "It's for fundraising." Now I'm sure, like I ...
8
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1answer
95 views

Company matched charitable giving and ma'aser

If my company matches a certain level of charitable giving, can this be included in any way in ma'aser calculations? Does it make a difference if the company matches the donations by giving directly ...
7
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1answer
177 views

Is indirect matanot l'evyonim ok?

I was under the impression that the Purim mitzvah of matanot l'evyonim, giving gifts to the poor, had to be done directly -- find two or more poor people and give to them. This answer on a related ...
7
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2answers
144 views

Does a discount to a poor person count as tzedakah?

If someone performs a service for a poor person and gives a discount in order to help him out, does the difference count as tzedakah? If so, can the full amount be counted towards maaser, or do we say ...
7
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2answers
77 views

May one choose the recipient of his/her organ donation?

I have decided to donate a kidney. I know that with organizations like Renewal you can choose to donate to someone specifically. I was wondering if it is mutar to browse potential recipients and see ...
7
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1answer
368 views

Government subsidies or tzedoko

it is preferable not to take charity from non-Jews (maybe only if it is not in private) Source Yore daiya 254 In a case of need (someone needs money for housing and/or food), which is more ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

When does the obligation of Maaser money begin?

There is a tradition of Maaser Kesafim, to give 1/10th of ones salary to charity. Is there a particular set time when the obligation to set aside this money for charity begins? For instance, is one ...
6
votes
1answer
313 views

Parents who don't want children to take ma'aser from gift

Suppose a non-observant parent gives a (monetary) gift to his/her adult child, but asks that the child not remove 10% to give for tzedaka ("Your mother and I saved this money for you, not for other ...
6
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1answer
234 views

Can Yizkor obligations be paid from Maaser money?

When a person goes to Shul to say Yizkor they obligate themselves to give Tzedaka in memory of the deceased. Can this obligation be paid from Maaser or does it have to be paid from the persons ...
6
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4answers
985 views

Can you buy a beggar non-Kosher food, or chometz on Pesach?

If I am asked for money by a beggar on the street, or see a homeless person with a sign, I try and give them food as it is usually more useful than money (which will probably be used for alcohol or ...
6
votes
3answers
139 views

Should ones name be put on a mitsva?

If someone does a mitsva like writing a sefer or providing a building for Jewish activities like a shul or school. Should he put his name on it and have it called after him? I am not referring to ...
6
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2answers
73 views

Can one accomplish Tzedaka through a will?

If one gives Tzedaka through a will -- so it is meant to be given after death -- does that person get the Mitzvah of Tzedaka? The reason I would think "no" is because it is difficult to understand ...

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