How You Can Help Victims Of The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting

When the country is wounded, Americans exercise a certain kind of super power: outreach.

When the Tree of Life Synagogue was attacked by a domestic terrorist, many felt the pain of families suffering and stepped up to help.

SEE ALSO: A History Lesson On The Tree Of Life Synagogue

29-year-old Shay Khatiri, an Iranian refugee, has raised almost $1 million for Tree of Life by starting a GoFundMe page. “I thought to myself, ‘Worst comes to worst, it will raise like $500.’ Which is better than nothing but it’s a little above that now,” he told the Washington TV station WJLA.

Khatiri is currently a graduate student at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Baltimore, he identifies as a Deist, and was inspired to raise money after seeing a Jewish friend’s reaction to the shooting.

“She told me what happened and she was just broken,” he told CNN. “Seeing how upset she was, I wanted to donate to the congregation.” Khatiri said that seeing the donations come in has inspired him. “Everyone talks about how divided we are,” he told CNN. “But in such a tragic moment, Americans are always powerful and indivisible in trauma.

If you’d like to do something to help in this time of sadness, here are your other choices. Better yet, participate in all of them, it’s not that hard!

VOTE!!

If you’re deeply affected about what’s been happening in America, even as a traveler or someone who lives abroad, then go vote! Absentee ballot and early voting are so easy nowadays, voting is the best way to ensure that the government puts your desired policies in place so that tragedies don’t continue to rise.

Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS)

This is an American nonprofit that started by helping jewish refugees at first. Since 1975, its humanitarian aid expanded to people of all nationalities, religions, and ethnicities. HIAS lends a hand to those whose freedom and lives are at risk due to war or violence. Today, it’s resettled more than 4.5 million people. You can help by donation, volunteer or conduct legal pro-bono work.

March For Our Lives

Founded by students after the high school mass shooting in Parkland, Florida. March For Our Lives raises money to fund gun violence research, intervention programs. Most importantly, it advocates for universal background checks.

Anti-Defamation League (ADL)

An organization that fights anti-Semitism and any acts of hate by shaping legislation and working with students on anti-bullying and inclusion methods. ADL even trains officers to combat terrorism and hate crimes. You can donate to ADL, or participate in its #StandUpAgainstHate fundraising initiative. It’s also conducting a digital vigil for lives lost in Tree of Life, more details are here.

Everytown for Gun Safety

Largely financed and founded by Michael Bloomberg, Everytown for Gun Safety supports and educate policy makers, the press, and the public about gun violence and keeps guns away from criminals. It also focuses on universal background checks on firearms purchase, and advocates for stronger gun control.

 

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