Friday, March 6, 2015

SDJA Students and G’mach Spread Purim Cheer

In the weeks leading up to Purim, students from the San Diego Jewish Academy (SDJA) and volunteers from G’mach—the San Diego Jewish Gift Closet, teamed up to deliver Purim gift baskets to Jewish families in San Diego who are experiencing financial and personal hardships. G’mach, a community partner of the Jewish Federation of San Diego County, called upon students and their families to collect a variety of items, ranging from diapers and clothing, to toys and snacks, in order to the create Purim gift baskets.

The project was orchestrated by G’mach, and came to fruition after volunteers worked with SDJA students to teach them about life struggles that those who are less fortunate experience on a daily basis. The volunteers discussed the price of rent and basic utilities in San Diego, how much it costs to put food on the table for a family, and many other privileges that are often taken for granted, which gave the students a new sense of awareness and appreciation.

SDJA students kindly put together seven beautiful packages, personalizing each basket based upon the needs of each family. The thoughtful gift baskets were also stuffed to the brim with hand-written cards with wishes for a happy Purim!

Volunteers picked up the baskets at SDJA and delivered them to the families just in time for the holiday! A handful of elementary school students eagerly volunteered to deliver the gift baskets during their recess break, and they happily carried the large gift baskets to the two volunteers – Shani and Myrice, who were standing by waiting to deliver the packages to the families in need.

When Myrice Goldberg, co-founder of G’mach and dedicated volunteer, asked the children about the significance of the packages, the youngsters offered heart-warming explanations. The children explained to Federation staff and G’mach volunteers that they wanted to spread the sweetness of Purim to other children and to those who are less fortunate. SDJA high school students were also involved in the Purim gift basket making project.

Five sophomore girls gave up their free time to bring the baskets to G’mach volunteers. “I can speak for my entire group of friends when I say that, we are proud to have collected these items and put together these gift baskets, it makes us feel good to participate in this sort of tzedekah,” said one of the students. “Here at SDJA, we are always talking about mitzvahs, and I feel like sharing the sweetness of Purim with those who have less than us, is the ultimate mitzvah – I wish I could go along on the deliveries to see, first-hand, the joy that these gifts are sure to bring.”  

Click here to learn more about G'mach and how to get involved! 


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