Federation to expand mitzvah project menu for Super Sunday

By Stephanie Smartschan
JFLV Director of Community Development & Operations

There will be more ways to get involved than ever at this year’s Super Sunday Community Mitzvah Day on Jan. 26.
From cooking to visiting older adults, painting walls and making calls, there will be opportunities for volunteers to participate whenever and however they like. 

“The goal is to do as much good as possible in our community in a single day,” said Naomi Schachter, who is co-chairing Super Sunday with Dana Cohen for the second year.

“We really wanted to expand the opportunities so that everyone could find a way to get involved,” Cohen said.

The day will begin at 9:30 a.m., as it always does, with an opportunity for volunteers to “make the call,” reaching out to members of the community to secure their support for the Federation’s Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs. The campaign benefits all of our local Jewish agencies, along with partners in Israel and in 70 countries around the world.

At 10:30 a.m., PJ Library families are invited to participate in a free program focusing on disability and inclusion. Jen Einstein will show us how she is “different” and how we are all unique. Parents are welcome and encouraged to participate in a Q&A with their children and Einstein. There will be crafts and snacks and, of course, a PJ Library story, and the first 50 children will receive a free T-shirt.

New this year: the Children’s Mitzvah Station will also open at 10:30 a.m. Children of all ages will have the opportunity to bring their tzedakah – in whatever amount they choose – and plant a tree in the Mark L. Goldstein Partnership Park in Yoav. Each child will receive a certificate and have the opportunity to take home a tree craft.
At 12 p.m., the first mitzvah projects will kick off. Federation will again partner with Jewish Family Service of the Lehigh Valley to prepare and deliver “Mazel Meals” for older adults living at home in Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton. 

“While the meals provide nourishment, so do the friendly visits that accompany them,” said Carol Wilson, who is coordinating the project on behalf of Jewish Family Service. “These volunteers have no idea what a difference they are making in the lives of their recipients.”

Meanwhile, more volunteers will visit older adults living in residential facilities across the Lehigh Valley.
Volunteers will also have the opportunity to get their hands dirty and help spruce up the JCC. There are rooms that need to be painted and, weather permitting, a garden that needs tending. 

And for the first time, older school-age children will have the opportunity to learn first-hand about philanthropy and what the meaning of Super Sunday is all about.

At 12:30 p.m., “Philanthropy 101”  will kick off for kids approximately 9 to 13 years old. The participants will participate in a real-life exercise to learn the importance of giving and then get in on the action with their own mitzvah project.

To learn more about all of these opportunities and sign up now to participate or volunteer, call the Jewish Federation at 610-821-5500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/supersunday.