Many years ago, I was asked to serve on the DHFLA Board, but I requested then that my late husband be invited instead; he was an attorney devoted to helping people avoid having to declare bankruptcy, so I thought he would be a more helpful “fit” than I. But now, that invitation has been extended again, and this time I was thrilled to say YES! I began my involvement by becoming a loan-seeker’s guarantor.
I wasn’t asked to do this: I volunteered. I know the person and recognized both a real need for the loan and a great opportunity to do a quiet mitzvah. DHFLA followed its protocol, warning me that if the borrower defaulted, I’d be responsible for the loan’s unpaid balance; my agreement confirmed my acceptance of vulnerability. But I knew that already because the long-gone woman I’ve always referred to as My Boubby the Philosopher did the same thing in her own Jewish community, where her lifetime of philanthropic generosity was legendary. I honor her memory in this way!
I hope that more people will consider becoming guarantors. Needs are especially great in this pandemic time, and backing loans brings positive change to the lives of those who need them. The big “payoff” is knowing that someone sleeps much better at night because of you!
By Harriet P. Gross
NOTE: Finding two qualified guarantors is often a hindrance for loan applicants. Consider volunteering to serve as a loan guarantor for a borrower and help us expand the number of people we can assist. Contact us for more information.