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Mitzvah of the Month

If you’d like to suggest an organization for next year, or to participate, please contact Alissa Frankel at afrankel@templebetham.com. 

September: The Simon Baker High Holy Days Food Drive: Donations will benefit the Alpert Jewish Family & Children’s Service. Bags will be distributed during Rosh Hashanah Services. Return filled bags to truck at TBA on Yom Kippur between 9:00am and 3:00pm. If you are more comfortable with a contactless delivery, click HERE to shop our Amazon wish list and it will be sent directly to Temple Beth Am. Click HERE to view and download the flyer.

August: Donate Back-to-School Supplies: The Jewish Volunteer Center (JVC) is proud to partner once again with the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County to ensure students in Palm Beach County Title 1 schools have the tools they need when they go back to school. You can help us achieve our goal of donating school supplies and books so that these future leaders can return to school in the fall—prepared and with dignity. Thank you for making sure students are set up for success. Click HERE to order from Red Apple’s Amazon Wish List, and the supplies will be sent directly to its warehouse.

May: Food Drive to Benefit Alpert Jewish Family Services - Zoom Lounge is our 8th–12th grade program that brings together our local Synagogues for teen education. Cathy Berger Kaye, author of Complete Guide to Service Learning, meets monthly with our students to discuss the importance of service learning and giving back to the community. As a cumulation of this program, the students have organized a food drive to benefit Alpert Jewish Family Services. AJFS receives many donations during the High Holy Days and now they need our help replenishing their food pantry. Their main needs are Kosher non-perishable items such as canned fish, canned goods, condiments, toiletries, and paper goods. They currently do not need pastas and cereals. Items can be dropped off to Temple Beth Am by May 18. Or, please see our Amazon Wishlist for an easy way to shop and support: https://amzn.to/32qlg8D

April: The Cotton Bottom Diaper Bank - Did you know that 1 out of 3 families in the U.S. struggles to buy diapers
and that there are nearly 700,000 children under the age of 3 in Florida? 
The Cotton Bottom Diaper Bank is the first freestanding diaper bank in Palm Beach and Martin Counties. They provide free diapers, wipes, and potty- training kits to low-income families in need through provider partner agencies. We’ll collect donations now through Friday, April 23. You can drop off diapers and/or wipes in the collection bin under the portico. Or, if you’d like to order from our Amazon wishlist and have the items shipped directly to the Temple, please visit https://amzn.to/2PWxovh

March: Camp Jenny - Camp Jenny is NFTY’s Southern Area and Southern Tropical Regions’ year-round mitzvah corps project, giving children from an urban school in Atlanta the opportunity to receive tutoring and support throughout the year, culminating in a 4-day-long camp experience at URJ’s Camp Coleman over Memorial Day Weekend. The students receive the love of big “brothers and sisters,” three nutritious meals a day, and encouragement for the future. They also enjoy activities such as hiking in the mountains, water play, ziplining, arts and crafts, and a variety of sports and team-building activities.

Every year, Camp Jenny helps to provide fun and meaningful programming and educational resources to students at FL Stanton Elementary School in Atlanta, Georgia. Despite the current situation, they are still able to provide these students with a virtual Camp Jenny experience. Camp Jenny 2021 is all about the marvels of space, and will feature engaging, out-of-this-world events that will teach the students about the importance of teamwork, trying new things, and being the best versions of themselves. This year, the NFTY teens are hard at work creating virtual experiences for the campers that will span several months, resulting in a never-before-seen version of Camp Jenny.

Our NFTY teens plan for two programs a month, ranging from activities like at-home science experiments and virtual carnivals to food trucks at the school. Camp Jenny is so grateful for their incredibly selfless and caring volunteers who donate so much of their time to helping others—specifically to make Camp Jenny the beautiful program it is. It is a joy watching the students light up when all the tireless hours of programming come to life.

With the launch of the 2021 programming comes the continuation of the fundraising initiatives necessary to keeping Camp Jenny the wonderful program it is. Despite it not being an in-person event, Camp Jenny 2021 will be using donations to make the experience as meaningful and exciting for the kids as possible, with things like supply boxes and other surprises that they will receive throughout the semester.

Click HERE if you would like to donate to help continue these efforts of bringing the camp experience to the children of FL Stanton Elementary School,

February: Mishloach Manot - Participate in our Mitzvah of the Month as we focus on supporting our own community. There are four Mitzvot of Purim: reading the Megillah (the Book of Esther), the Seudah (eating a special meal), matanot l’evyonim (helping those in need), and Mishloach Manot. Mishloach Manot are small gift bags of food and treat that Jews traditionally send to each other to celebrate and fulfill the mitzvot of Purim. The Megillah tells us that we should spend this holiday feasting, rejoicing, and showing our unity as a Jewish people. Purchase a Mishloach Manot to give to your friends, neighbors, your child’s teacher and classmates, or ANYONE who makes a difference in your life. Click HERE for an order form. Orders due by February 12. If you have questions or need assistance delivering your Mishloach Manot, contact Elana Beame at 561.747.1109.

January: Book Drive - Let’s start off the new year with a mitzvah for kids! We’ll be collecting new and gently used books (everything from preschool to high school chapter books) during the month of January. All donations will be distributed to Palm Beach County schools. It’s a great way to make space on your bookshelves and pass along books that your children have enjoyed and outgrown. How you can participate: Drop off your book donations in the indicated bin under the TBA portico during business hours. General collection will run from Tuesday, January 5 to Friday, January 22. (TOS families, feel free to drop off books during your carpool lines. Religious School families can drop off donations during school through Sunday, January 24.) Thank you in advance for participating in this educational mitzvah!

December: Sustaining the Light: Social Justice Guide to Hanukkah – In the middle of winter, we gather together around the Hanukkah lights, spin the dreidel, and eat latkes and jelly donuts, celebrating the festival of Hanukkah. Hanukkah takes its name of “dedication” from the Maccabees’ rededication of the Temple after their battle against King Antiochus. By returning to and reclaiming the Temple, the Maccabees recommitted themselves to a Jewish way of life, to all that they held dear. Thus, Hanukkah asks us to rededicate ourselves not only to our Judaism, but to the values we place at the center of our faith. In particular, Hanukkah can be a time when we rededicate ourselves to the work of tikkun olam, repair of the world. Each week in December, we will focus on an issue connected with Hanukkah: the environment, economic justice, children’s issues (including child slavery, child poverty, and bullying), and religious liberty. These themes are linked by the theme of sustainability. As our ancestors worked to keep the light in the Temple burning from generation to generation, we work towards creating a just society that will endure from generation to generation—a society in which all of its members live in a dignified way, which preserves the environment and our natural resources, which protects and nurtures our children, and which continues to be a beacon of religious freedom. As we increase the lights of Hanukkah, adding a candle each night, so too might we, by our actions, bring new light to the world: light to those living in poverty, light for our fragile ecosystems, light for all of our children, and the light of religious liberty.

November: Back to Basics Holiday Drive  – The Back to Basics Angel Program provides nearly 8,000 needy elementary school students with the basic necessities of NEW sneakers, socks, underwear, and a wrapped toy each year during the holiday season.   How to Participate: 1) Email Alissa at afrankel@templebetham.com to receive your wish card(s) via e-mail with a child’s name, age, and sizes on it. If you prefer to donate an Amazon or Walmart gift card, we will do the purchasing for you! 2) Wrap your gifts and tape the child’s name to the outside of your gifts to show the child’s information. 3) Return gifts to Temple Beth Am during the designated drive-thru on Sunday, December 6 from 9:30am–12:00pm. 

October: Loggerhead Marine Life – Loggerhead Marine Life is a nonprofit sea turtle hospital that promotes conservation of ocean ecosystems with a special focus on threatened and endangered sea turtles. Celebrate the International Coastal Cleanup with Loggerhead Marine Life. Stop by LMC any Saturday from 10:00am–1:30pm to participate in a self-guided beach cleanup! They will supply beach cleanup materials on the back deck by their marine debris sorting station. If you bring back a full bag of debris, you will receive a free shirt for your efforts! (while supplies last) Stop by anytime during the duration and help keep the very beach that our turtles call home free from trash and litter. Bring a reusable water bottle, mask, garden gloves, and buckets (we also recommend bringing your own cloth/recycled bags). Address is 14200 US Highway 1 in Juno Beach.

Thu, September 16 2021 10 Tishrei 5782