Today is Tisha B’Av, one of the most solemn days on the Jewish calendar. It marks several tragedies that befell the Jewish people over the course of history – in particular the destruction of the First and Second Temples in Israel, as well as many other disasters.

On the night of Tisha B’Av, Jews read the book of Eicha / Lamentations – a mournful text rich with imagery of despair, loss and great regret. Images and statements of intense hunger are common throughout the text, like this one from chapter 4:

Those that are killed with the sword are better than those that are killed with hunger; for they pine away, stricken through, for want of the fruits of the field.

In commemoration of Tisha B’Av, many Jews fast from sunset to nightfall the following day. Fasting is a way to tap into both physical and spiritual hunger, as well as a sense of feeling out of control of one’s life and future.

Unfortunately, as we know, there are many people who feel the pain of physical hunger every day – holiday or not. So in honor of the holiday, here are some great organizations to support that are working to combat hunger nationally and globally. Learn more about and consider a donation to:

  • Mazon – a Jewish organization working to fight hunger worldwide.
  • Action Against Hunger – which provides innovative solutions to global hunger.
  • Feeding America – working to feed America’s 37 million hungry citizens.
  • Hazon Yeshaya – a humanitarian organization that provides food and services to hungry people in Israel.