By Amy Zylberman
JFLV Director of Community Development
On Sunday, April 3, Women's Philanthropy joined millions of others from around the world to do good right here in the Lehigh Valley. Good Deeds Day is a global effort that started in Israel in 2007 and now spans to over 100 countries. The Good Deed of the day here was a Dignity Grows hygiene tote packing party, with two sites packing 150 bags that benefit three local organizations — Jewish Family Service, a beneficiary of the Jewish Federation, as well as Project Hope of Easton and Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley.
Rachel Levin hosted volunteers at her home in Nazareth, and students and Director Ira Blum from Muhlenberg College Hillel joined volunteers at the Jewish Community Center in Allentown. The JCC site hosted Meredith Mecca, Turning Point’s Outreach Director, to share more information about the importance of an organization like Turning Point and how a client would benefit from receiving one of the bags for free. Turning Point is a safe place where all survivors of domestic and intimate partner abuse and their children can find refuge. They provide services in Lehigh and Northampton counties and reach nearly 2,200 people a year through their trauma-informed, inclusive programs and services. Those include a 24-hour emergency safe house, empowerment counseling and groups, legal advocacy, outreach education, and medical advocacy. Volunteers were able to hear from Mecca, ask questions, and then pack bags full of eight full-sized products that would directly benefit clients.
At the home of Rachel Levin, participants filled bags for Project Hope of Easton, which began in 1989 when families in the community of Easton wanted to help their neighbors during the holiday season. Project Hope has created a big impact during COVID-19 and will get the Dignity Grows bags to clients as well.
The other set of bags will benefit Jewish Family Service, providing emergency assistance to those in the 18104 area regardless of religion, and serving Jewish clients across the Lehigh Valley. Their Community Food Pantry allows clients to choose the items they receive and is generously supported through the community and maintained by generous volunteers.
Good Deeds Day is an annual event that brings millions together to brighten the lives of millions more. We are grateful for the volunteers who joined us last month. We look forward to all the good we can do together in 2023!