The seeds of HabAid were firmly planted in 1962, the year in which the Habad Orphan Aid Society was created. Back then, several very driven young men formed a charity in response to a ‘call to arms’ from a true luminary, Dayan Eliezer Spector, a well loved and revered Rabbi of Walford Road Synagogue in Stoke Newington.
Rabbi Spector had visited Israel and was familiar with the establishment of a vocational trade school for young boys in a small village just outside Tel Aviv, called Kfar Habad.
In 1957, the school children at Kfar Habad bore witness to the very worst of atrocities when terrorists infiltrated the village synagogue, whilst the young students of the school were in the midst of evening prayers. They raked the room with machine gun fire killing 5 children and 1 teacher and wounding another 10 children.
So began the existence of the Habad charity, formed to help raise money to buy equipment and tools to support and revitalise the vocational school and to help the children heal and rebuild their lives and cast away the shadow of their gloom.
Gradually the school grew and at its height, was the home for over 3,000 orphaned and under privileged children. Equally, the committee grew in size and prospered too, with the amalgamation of a committee from Southend-on-Sea in Essex, called the 615 committee.
As the years passed, the Committee organised and became synonymous with an annual Habad Boxing Dinner held at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London and later The Hilton, Park Lane. It also raised funds with the occasional Premier Film Show.
In 2008, the school at Kfar Habad regretfully closed due to a number of factors. As a result, the Committee decided to reform as HabAid, which enabled it to adopt a far wider constitution in order in order to support a greater variety of worthy causes for children in Israel, in the U.K. and other countries including, inter alia, the Ukraine.
Today, HabAid has assumed the mantle previously held by the Habad Orphan Aid Society. Having done so, HabAid extended its wings to become a charitable foundation. Each year we evaluate and select around 10 worthy causes to support and we raise funds to finance approved projects tendered by those charities.
The committee is made up of a team of dedicated volunteers who give their time, money and expertise completely free. They all work tirelessly throughout the year to generate funds for the worthy causes we support. Each year we help to alleviate the suffering for 100’s of Jewish ‘children in need’ both here and internationally.
We seek to make a direct impact to help soften the pain suffered by ‘children in need’ and help their dreams come true. Our job is to lend a voice to the unheard child and to discretely and respectfully assist wherever we can.
Our motto is a simple one: “No man is taller than when he stoops to help a child”.