Warm the West Side by Bradley Goldman (Nativ 34)
Warm the West Side is a nonpartisan charity organization that purchases and donates blankets, hats, and socks to those in need. We partner with homeless shelters on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and surrounding areas in order to assist them in providing winter necessities for their residents.
Warm the West Side believes in humanity. We believe that a person’s worth is decided by the warmth they give to others. Warmth is generated by coming together, and in a year as difficult and divisive as this one, it’s important to count our blessings and if possible share those with others. We are an organization of upstanders who understand that the world is not always equal, just, or loving but that doesn’t mean we can’t be.
On a personal note, Nativ was remarkably important in solidifying who I am as a person and as Jew. I learned so much as I explored Israel and truly explored myself. Even though I knew people on the program I felt for the first time in my life I got to decide who I was and was able to really shape my identity. I made such incredible friends on the different tiyulim, thoroughly enjoyed learning and living in Jerusalem, and made memories that will last a lifetime in a small village in the middle of the desert called Yerucham. I wouldn’t be who I am today without Nativ.
I decided to create Warm the West Side because as everyone knows this year has been an excruciatingly difficult. Yet through all the darkness there have been glimmers of light. Whether it was cheering every day at 7pm with pots and pans for our healthcare workers, rallying behind our fellow black Americans as we fight for equality and justice, or watching an election that resulted in a woman finally being elected to the second highest office in the land and elected a President that champions diversity, democracy, family, love, and unity (albeit all a little late). One lesson I’ve learned from all of these moments is that everyone matters. Every vote that’s cast, every voice that speaks out, every person you see. In Judaism, there’s a common idiom that tells us that every single person is a world, and when you raise them up, it’s as if you’ve raised up the entire world. This inspired me to create Warm the West Side to remind myself, New Yorkers, and the world that people matter; No matter what.
Please visit our site to learn more or to support our cause!