While we are all self-isolating our families and reading about Coronavirus concerns, our schools are closed, virtual hebrew and school classes are Zoomed and our kids may need something else to keep them busy.
A mitzvah project usually involves close contact with others so, instead of putting your child/family at risk, we wanted to share a few ideas of how your bar/bat mitzvah student and children at home can still “repair the world” while keeping your family and others safe.
There are local and worldwide organizations needing help. Start an online or email campaign asking others to help the worldwide response to Coronavirus.
The Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund is a secure way for individuals, philanthropies and businesses to contribute to the WHO-led effort to respond to the pandemic.
Meals on Wheels: Reach out to your local Meals on Wheels provider to see what their specific needs may be, including monetary and food donations.
The elderly are the most vulnerable population in this pandemic and their families are being told not to visit. This is where a mitzvah project can help spread some cheer with a letter-writing campaign. Have your son/daughter call a local retirement or nursing home and talk to the Director about writing letters to some or all of the residents. They may have privacy concerns about them giving out names, but the workaround can be a generic letter to each resident, sent in a separate envelope to the Director’s attention.
If your bar/bat mitzvah child feels strongly about a cause or organization, is an expert on a particular subject matter, or just likes to talk a lot, have them put together a series of podcasts to share on social media. Before getting started, order a podcast microphone on Amazon and look into the various hosting sites. Buzzsprout, Podbean, and Simplecast are good starter platforms with free trials or low monthly fees.
Why is gardening a good mitzvah project? It allows for plants to intake carbon dioxide and release oxygen back into the environment. Plants have a positive impact on humans and creatures because it increases production of oxygen supply. Also, gardening is said to build self-esteem and relieve stress, something our families need, especially during all of the COVID-19 uncertainty.
To get started: Order seeds and small starter pots from an online source and plant an indoor garden. Once the weather stops dipping below freezing, the planters are ready to go into the ground outdoors. In the meantime, during the warmer days in the next couple of weeks, bar/bat mitzvah students can clear space in your lawn for an outdoor garden. Don’t forget the fencing to keep away deer, rabbits and squirrels. Click here for a full description of how to start a beginner garden.
Does your family have other ideas to share? We’d love to hear from you with more virtual mitzvah project ideas to implement in the days and weeks ahead.
While we are all navigating new waters, our resilience will prevail. Wishing you and your families a safe time ahead.