Sunday proves to be super, thanks to Rhode Islanders answering the call


Sharon Gaines, left, Amanda Isenberg and Jeff Padwa, event co-chairs, and  Susan Leach DeBlasio /Greg GermanowskiPROVIDENCE – The phenomenon of “Thanksgivikkah” has come and gone but was not lost at the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island on November 24 for Super Sunday.

Rhode Island answered the call to help ensure a strong Jewish future. More than 75 volunteers gathered to raise $121,224 to propel the 2014 Annual Campaign past the $2 million mark. The volunteers thanked donors for their past support and were able to reach out, engage and bring many more people into the community. With the Thanksgiving and Hanukkah overlap, the community was reminded to give back, thus creating a communal atmosphere.

The day began with a busy morning, as many volunteers showed up representing many of the agencies and synagogues in the community. Babysitting was available all day and children’s activities kept families busy. Continuing the annual tradition, religious school and Jewish day school students brought in tzedakah boxes filled with coins, contributing $70 to the overall total dollars raised.

Dick Silverman, a seasoned Super Sunday volunteer and co-chair of the Men’s Community Campaign, enjoyed making his phone calls. “It was such an honor working on Super Sunday, making calls for a great cause. It is important to remember that regardless how much someone gives, we should be aware that it is important to that donor.” Silverman has volunteered at many of the Alliance’s other phonathons throughout the year.

Super Sunday was chaired this year by Jewish Family Service President, Amanda Isenberg, and Jewish Seniors Agency President, Jeffrey Padwa. The two agency heads came together to create a cohesive bond among the different agencies and synagogues, leading the day to a great success. “I am proud of our community’s efforts on Super Sunday, knowing that virtually every Jewish agency and organization came together to make calls, and the community responded by contributing generously,” said Padwa. “By working together, we showed ourselves again that we have the compassion and capacity to take care of our friends and neighbors who are in need.  Congratulations to us.” Isenberg agreed, saying, “I feel fortunate to have been part of such a successful community-wide fundraising event. It was inspiring to see people from all branches of our community coming together for a joint cause. Thank you to everyone who participated by planning Super Sunday, making calls, contributing to the Annual Campaign and supporting the event in general. It definitely takes a village!”

The 2014 Annual Campaign Chair, Susan Leach DeBlasio, echoed the chairs’ sentiments. “Co-chairs Amanda Isenberg and Jeffrey Padwa and our many volunteers were inspirational, generating incredible community spirit and proving once again that we are stronger together. Our Alliance staff were organized, prepared and unflappable, providing the volunteers with campaign materials and information and snacks effortlessly throughout the day.  Thanks so much to those who called and those who generously answered the call to make this Super Sunday a great success.”

Overall, Super Sunday was a great success, demonstrating the strength of a community, unifying agencies, synagogues and families alike, and making a difference in our community and abroad, one phone call at a time.

For more information about the 2014 Annual Campaign, the Jewish Alliance, or to make your gift by phone, contact Michele Gallagher at or 421-4111, ext. 165. You can also make your gift to the 2014 Annual Campaign online at