Ilford Primary programme gets MP's vote
Clayhall volunteers Elliott Greene, Rabbi Nissan Wilson, Neil Sapler, Fiona Sapler, Evette Henderson and David Langdorf
Ilford South Labour MP Mike Gapes came away "really impressed" by the Mitzvah Day activities at Ilford Jewish Primary.
Younger pupils decorated Chanucah cards for the Blue Peter Go Cardz appeal. Older children were addressed by eight-year-old pupil Darcy Tish, who is recovering from an operation, before making "get well" cards for children in local hospitals.
A serviceman spoke about his experiences in Afghanistan to year five and six pupils, who composed letters to serving soldiers.
Down the road at King Solomon High, students brought in warm clothes for the World Jewish Relief Operation Winter Survival appeal and toys for Camp Simcha, supporting children with life threatening illnesses.
Headteacher Spencer Lewis said: "It was wonderful to see the students collecting a vast amount of toys for Camp Simcha, which is such an important cause. It is another way in which we show our students that it is just as much fun to give as it is to receive - that is how communities thrive." Also in Redbridge, Clayhall Synagogue members organised a shopping project to collect goods in support of a night shelter. More than 20 volunteers turned up throughout the day at Tesco In Barkingside to collect toiletries and cleaning equipment for the Redbridge Assessment Centre. The centre will make up packs to give to users when they leave, helping them to live independently. Thirty-plus boxes of products were transported to the centre in four cars.
"We were overwhelmed by the amount of goods we collected," said co-ordinator Fiona Sapler. "Shoppers were so generous with one lady even buying a trolley-load of goods to donate. All faiths supported us wholeheartedly."