Mitzvah Day 2020: Redbridge schools and synagogues’ good deeds fight food poverty and loneliness
PUBLISHED: 15:00 16 November 2020 | UPDATED: 15:42 17 November 2020
Schools and organisations across Redbridge performed acts of kindness as part of Mitzvah Day.
More than 300 faith communities and organisations across the country took part in the annual event on Sunday, November 15, including 40 schools and thousands of families and individual volunteers.
Pupils at Wohl Ilford Jewish Primary School donated food and toiletries to the Redbridge Food Bank and toys and games to Camp Simcha.
Pupils also made cards for children in hospital and for residents at care homes as well as veterans from The Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen and Women (Ajex).
Children from the East London and Essex Liberal Synagogue in South Woodford learned to bake cakes in their own homes as part of a virtual class.
The cakes were then delivered to Mill Grove, which has cared for foster children for the last 120 years, some of whom have cerebral palsy.
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At Clore Tikva school in Barkingside the pupils made chocolates and distributed them to wards at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, Queens and Newham General Hospital.
They also designed cards for the elderly members of South West Essex and Settlement Synagogue and collected toys for children who are in hospital during the festive period for Camp Simcha.
The mitzvahs were replicated in 30 other countries, with projects happening as far away as Brazil, South Africa, Canada, Bermuda and Latin America - as well as all across Europe.
The charity’s chief executive Georgina Bye hailed the day as “a feat of flexibility and a testament to the tenacity and creativity of all our incredible Mitzvah Day volunteers and coordinators.”
Georgina added: “Despite the restrictions, thousands of people came together, in spirit, to run collections for foodbanks, write handmade cards for those who are lonely, record poems and songs for care home residents, make socially distanced doorstep visits to their neighbours, bake cakes for key workers, make masks for hospices, donate blood and so much more.
“This year’s Mitzvah Day once again shows us how powerful it is when people of all faiths and backgrounds come together to support local community needs and how every mitzvah and every act of kindness, no matter how small, truly matters.”
Mitzvah Day is the UK’s biggest faith-based day of social action and sees Jews, Muslims, Christians and those from all faiths and backgrounds doing small acts of kindness to help others. This year’s Mitzvah Day focussed on the two major crises in society today – food poverty and loneliness.
Since these issues are so prevalent this year the charity has decided to extend it to an entire “month of Mitzvahs” throughout November.
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