Mitzvah day

Northern participants rely on animal instincts

By Jonathan Kalmus, November 25, 2010

The gardening skills of Manchester Habonim Dror members helped preserve allotments that needy residents rely upon for fresh produce.

As their Mitzvah Day contribution, the 16-to-19-year-olds tended to plots belonging to the husband of a terminally ill cancer patient and a woman who had suffered a heart attack.


Ilford Primary programme gets MP's vote

By Cathy Forman, November 25, 2010

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.


Residents relish their Orient-al takeaway

November 25, 2010

Football fans at Jewish Care's Vi and John Rubens House in Redbridge had a ball as two Leyton Orient stars paid a Mitzvah Day call.

Defender Ben Chorley and striker Alex Revell from the League One club found a number of lifelong O's supporters among the Rubens residents and got as much out of the visit as they did.


Praise for mitzvah masses

By Robyn Rosen, November 25, 2010

Mitzvah Day founder Laura Marks says the community should be "extremely proud" of a record response to the day of social action.

An estimated 18,000 volunteers from more than 200 synagogues, schools and communal organisations worked on 600 projects.

"Mitzvah Day goes from strength to strength," she said. "It is the Jewish community's newest tradition,
a day on which we are all able to come together to make a difference to our own community, our friends, our neighbours and the strangers within our gates."


Tony Blair's Mitzvah Day message

By Jennifer Lipman, November 18, 2010
See Video

The former Prime Minister offers his support for this year's Mitzvah Day


Boris Johnson backs big Mitzvah Day

November 18, 2010

Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams and London Mayor Boris Johnson are supporting the final push for Mitzvah Day, Sunday's community-wide volunteering initiative.

Dr Williams says "the Jewish community should be proud of what they achieve each Mitzvah Day. I am also proud that increasing numbers of Anglican groups are joining our Jewish friends, both to build bridges and to make a difference to those in our community who, from time to time, need a helping hand."

Mr Johnson describes the day as an example of the community spirit he wants to see across the capital.


Big Society? We invented it

By Robyn Rosen, November 11, 2010

The Government minister in charge of the Big Society initiative has praised the effect Mitzvah Day has on society.

Nick Hurd, the minister for civil society and MP for Northwood, Ruislip and Pinner, will join Rabbi Hillel Athias-Robles and other representatives from Northwood and Pinner Liberal Synagogue, as well as from the local Hindu community, on November 21 to deliver toys and books to Jake's Place, the Children's Ward at nearby Northwick Park hospital. The project is among thousands to take place on the fifth annual day of social action.


Ealing celebrate early Mitzvah Day

By Jay Grenby, November 4, 2010

Mitzvah Day came early for Ealing Synagogue members this year.

Rather than abandon participation in the annual day of good deeds because of the imminent start on the shul hall redevelopment, congregants decided to advance their contribution.


One rabbi and his dog

By Katie Taylor, October 22, 2010

Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg and his dog Mitzpah will be doing a sponsored walk from Frankfurt to Finchley.

The trek is in support of Tikkun Olam – repairing and helping the rest of the world.

The New North London Synagogue rabbi will be raising money to construct libraries in the Galilee, in Northern Israel, and in Malawi.

Donations will also go to a Jewish community centre in the Ukraine and to a mentoring programme to help young people develop social enterprise projects.

The pair plan to cover 250 miles by foot and use public transport for the rest of the distance.