The first PJ Our Way™ Birthday-in-a-Box Mitzvah Project event brought smiles to many faces, as more than 60 participants, aged 8 to 12, celebrated giving back in a meaningful way. The community service event, held on the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County campus, showcased local youth’s capacity for compassion within their community.
On Oct. 15, 2023, tweens created heartfelt cards for soldiers in Israel, and shinshinim, Federation’s visiting emissaries from Israel, led guests in the Hatikvah and prayer for the State of Israel.
“While our hearts are with Israel, it was important to do a local mitzvah, for children in our community,” said Elana Ostroff, PJ Library director. “Our tweens showed their compassion for everyone who needs help now.”
More than 50 birthday boxes, filled with boxes of cake mix, icing, utensils and other elements of a party, were assembled for the Jacobson Family Food Pantry. Deena Sturm, a PJ Our Way™ mom, expressed her appreciation for the impact of the program.
“Birthdays in our family are a big deal, and we don’t always stop and think how lucky we are to be able to celebrate them,” she said. “It was eye opening for my daughter and her friends to consider the fact that not every child, by default, is able to have a birthday party, and it brought them joy to know they were bringing some birthday magic to children that would otherwise not be able to celebrate.”
“’Birthday in a Box’ was an amazing way to do something for my community and make a difference in someone’s life,” said Hadley Stock, 12. “I loved learning how to draw and make my birthday box special for another child.”
To learn more about the PJ Our Way™ or PJ Library® in South Palm Beach County, visit https://jewishboca.org/pjlibrary
PJ Library® in South Palm Beach County is made possible by generous support from the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County, Leon and Toby Cooperman Family Foundation, Jewish Women’s Foundation, and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation.
About the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County
Established in 1979, the JFSPBC is made up of Jewish and social service organizations, synagogues, and schools that provide valued services and programs to recipients in South Palm Beach County, in Israel and around the world. The JFSPBC is also comprised of local residents, including lay leadership, volunteer, donors, professional staff, rabbis, educators, event participants and students. Situated on a 100-acre campus in west Boca Raton – the largest in the nation – the JFSPBC supports more than 70 beneficiaries, engages with more than 5,000 donors, and connects more than 130,000 residents. To learn more about how we contribute to a shared vision for the Jewish community, visit https://jfspbc.org or call 561.852.3100.