SANDY

I don’t believe that God watches over me. I do believe that there is something that transcends my being. My purpose in this world is to give off “chesed,” or loving kindness. While many people mistake being kind for being naïve, I continue to believe in what I do.

On Facebook, I belong to a group called “Jewish Spirit.” In that group, I came across an African man, Moses, living in a remote village in eastern Uganda called Namanyonyi.  He wrote that the village, which was entirely Jewish, had no electricity or running water. Moses posted a call for help after heavy rains flooded their water sources. He feared the illnesses that he and his village were going to contract.

All my friends thought it was a scam—like the emails we get every day asking us for money. But I started thinking, “What if this were true?” I started investigating. I found out that such a village did exist. And then I found out that Moses was for real!

I started an email correspondence with Moses, and we became friends. He and his wife have children the age of my two younger grandchildren. One day, Moses told me that his wife was going to have a baby. Later, Moses asked me my Hebrew name. I told him Shulamith. A couple of hours later, he emailed again, telling me his wife had given birth to twin girls, and asking for another Hebrew name—he hoped for a woman I love. So I gave him my late mother’s Hebrew name, Malka. Now, there are two beautiful little girls in Africa named after my mother and me. It’s quite unbelievable!

With the help of a small inheritance I received from my mother that I am using as seed money, I am raising the funds to have a permanent well with electricity built in Moses’ village. There is no doubt that this is one of the most important things I have done in my life after getting married and having my children. And all because of my belief in chesed, or loving kindness.