Temple Micah “has taken the bar mitzvah project to a whole other level.” This is especially true given the enormous success of the 2014 underwear drive, which collected over 11,000 pieces of underwear! We are excited to “celebrate helping others” alongside our amazing 6th grade class.
An excerpt from Washington Jewish Week ‘s “Dedicated Donations” highlighting the amazing work of our members and our 6th grade class:
“Temple Micah in D.C. has taken the bar mitzvah project to a whole other level. Students in the sixth grade there do a class project as they prepare to undertake their own b’nai mitzvah project the following year. This year’s class hopes to collect at least 10,000 pairs of boxers, briefs, bras and thermal underwear for homeless people.
This all started back in 1999, when congregant Martha Adler was appointed Temple Micah’s liaison with the Community Council for the Homeless, now known as Friendship Place. It is located on Wisconsin Avenue in the District.
Adler recalled speaking with officials there and asking how best her congregation could help. A nun told her that people are always donating shoes, coats, blankets and hats but rarely underwear. Adler recalls the woman telling her how difficult it is to have dignity without clean underwear.
For several years after that, Adler took it upon herself, often with the help of a bar mitzvah student, to collect as much underwear as she could during the High Holidays.
The first year they collected 1,000 items, she said.
As the project grew, so did the number of collections and the workload. That’s when Temple Micah decided it would become a dedicated sixth-grade project. The 20 children in this year’s class had a party as they stapled the flyers to empty bags. They then distributed the bags at Rosh Hashanah services, collected the donations at Yom Kippur services and then sorted out the underwear.
The collection “is actually a very important community-building partnership we have at Friendship Place,” she said.”
Read the rest of the story.