In Hashavua Article, Yavneh News

Kitah Hay Animal Shelter Donation Drive 

When I was very little, I remember watching with envy as the ‘big kids’ stepped up to the bima and read from the Torah as B’nai Mitzvah.  Of course, I wasn’t jealous that they got to read the Torah–I wasn’t old enough to appreciate all that that meant.  I was jealous that once they had finished their portion, the rabbi would pull them aside and whisper something in their ear that only they could hear.   I needed to know what she was telling them. 

Finally my big day came.   I chanted.  I d’rashed.  I donned my fancy purple tie.  The moment arrived when our rabbi called me up and enveloped me in her tallit.  I waited breathlessly as she leaned in and cleared her throat to speak.  What was it?  

Not bad, Zack,” she rasped. “Do you feel Jewish now?” 

“I guess so,” I replied tentatively. “I mean, I am Jewish.” 

“That’s true,” she remarked.  I watched her eyebrows wriggle as she bobbed her head in thought.  “But being Jewish is pretty easy, afterall.   Doing it is a lot tougher and more worth the while.”  She then reached to her side and grabbed an item that had been hiding in plain sight: a ceramic tzedakah box.  She handed it to me:  my gift for reaching this milestone. 

“Here,” she said.  “This will help.”

Looking back, I don’t know what I expected.  Maybe I thought I would get the passcode to a hidden safe that contained the ancient religious relics of our people.  Yet even such things would pale in comparison to the value of the wisdom she gave.  It forms the ideological foundation of what teaching Jewish Studies means to me.

Each year in 5th Grade, as a core component in our Jewish Studies curriculum, we do Jewish.   We focus on tikkun olam–repairing our world–through text study and enact our learning through service.  The students discuss, vote and agree on a community service project that they will undertake as a class.  They research their cause extensively, they visit other classrooms to share their knowledge, and they spearhead a donation and/or volunteer campaign in order to make a positive difference.  

This year, our class elected to help out our local animals in need, organizing a donation campaign aimed at finding them proper care.   Thanks to student outreach, we will be raising donations for the Humane Society of Silicon Valley.   Our drive will last from Tuesday, November 2nd to Friday, November 12th

How you can help:  

    1. Donate pet toys, pet foods (wet & dry), fleece blankets, collar, nursing bottles and/or crates directly.  We will have a large donation box in the front lobby where your child can drop them off.  Let’s fill that box! [Please sanitize used toys/materials well before donating].
    2. Give directly to the Humane Society by donating an amount of your choosing here.  Or purchase an item for their animals off their wishlist.   Send Mr. Sleep an email saying that you donated and our class will send you a personalized ‘thank you’ card. 
    3. Care for an animal in need by adopting or fostering, as long as your family is ready and willing! Let us know if you end up welcoming another member into your family!

On behalf of our furry friends in Silicon Vallet, thank you for your kindness and support!

Nondiscrimination Policy: Yavneh Day School admits students of any race, color, national, and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national, and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.
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