R. Mi lle r P ho tog rap l
Yad Ezra honors Susie and Norman.
Pappas for their efforts to feed the hungry.
he need for feeding the hungry con-
tinues and is growing at "an alarming
increase," said Lawrence Jackier, presi-
dent of the Jewish Federation of
Metropolitan Detroit, at Yad Ezra's 12th annual
dinner at Adat Shalom Synagogue in Farmington
Individuals in the Jewish community who
depend on Yad Ezra for nourishment received a
boost from the Oct. 21 event. With more than
Volunteer Erwin Robinson
600 people in attendance, S300,000 — one-
Family to Community
The Pappas family:
third of its annual operating budget — was
Leslie, Dan, Susie,
Introducing the honorees with moving
raised for Michigan's only kosher food pantry.
Norman and Amy
tributes were the three Pappas children,
Honored at the evening were Susie Pappas, a Yad
Jackier told the crowd that in one
Pappas were honored at
Leslie, 28, now in Israel; Dan, 26, of
Ezra board member, and her husband, Norman, of
month, the food pantry distributes
Yad Ezra's 12th
Birmingham; and Amy, 21, a senior at
60,000 pounds of food; that's almost
annual dinner on
Michigan State University in Lansing.
"Given the state of the economy, we're pleased we're three-fourths of a million pounds of
They all expressed learning firsthand
within 8 percent of our projected goal," said Lea
food a year.
from their parents the importance of giv-
Luger of West Bloomfield, Yad Ezra co-director with
In his remarks, Yad Ezra President
ing and participating in the community.
Elaine Ryke of Troy. "We just completed our capital
Andrew Zack of Huntington Woods
In his remarks, Norman Pappas said
campaign, so once again our donors came forth even
thanked the 125 volunteers he called
the evening was about Yad Ezra, which
after being approached-for that."
the backbone of Yad Ezra.
provides food and a lifeline of support in a "dignified
The campaign raised $1.25 million for the pur-
One of them singled out was Erwin Robinson of
and good manner."
chase and renovation of Yad Ezra's new warehouse
Farmington Hills, who received the Diane and
Susie Pappas said that the best thing about being
facility in Berkley.
Emery Klein Volunteer Recognition Award.
honored was raising money to help the people at Yad
"We're also pleased and grateful that we had a won-
Robinson has worked every Tuesday and Thursday Ezra, and also seeing the new faces she had brought
derful turnout and that the Pappases allowed us to
for eight years and can make clients feel comfortable into the organization.
honor them and the wonderful work they do for the
in a difficult situation, said Diane Klein of
About attracting more volunteers, Pappas had this
community," Luger said.
Southfield. He speaks English, Yiddish and has
message: Ask for help.
Debbie Balkin of West Bloomfield, dinner co-
learned some Russian for communicating with
"I was asked to be on the Yad Ezra dinner commit-
chairperson with Ellie Glen of Southfield, welcomed young and old alike.
tee," she said. "Just ask, and people will get involved.
the crowd. More than a decade ago, Balkin said, Yad
Robinson said he learned about charity the hard
And you always get back more than you give."
Ezra started out providing monthly food parcels to
way. His father died when he was young. But lucki-
Giving to Yad Ezra, said Rabbi Daniel Nevins of
230 Jewish families. Today, that number has grown
ly, his family was helped by organizations like the
Adat Shalom in his invocation, is not a privilege but an
to 11,000 families or 25,000 individuals. Clients
Goodfellows and that left its mark on him. Today,
obligation. "Feeding the hungry is the most pressing
now receive packages that include chicken, eggs,
Robinson said, he still feels he owes something back
imperative today," he said. ❑
beef, milk, pasta, gefilte fish, cereal and bread,
to the community.