... Read More
Hillcrest Jewish Center, a Conservative synagogue in eastern Queens, decided to celebrate its 70th anniversary in a very special way. Rather than using the occasion as an excuse for partying or fund raising, our rabbi, Rabbi Manes Kogan, suggested that we use the occasion to increase chesed within our community. And so, the 70th Anniversary Mitzvot Project was born.
The goal of the project was to engage as many Hillcrest members as possible in as many different mitzvah projects as possible. And boy, did we ever do that! At the end of the first year of the project, the start of our 71st year as a congregation, the Mitzvot Project has 25 projects up and running and more than 200 volunteers actively involved in a wide variety of activities.
We began our anniversary year with an introduction to the project during Rosh Hashanah services and an official launch at our annual Dinner in the Sukkah. Throughout the year there were articles in our monthly paper bulletin, and emails and information on our web site. There were also countless announcements from the bimah on Shabbat mornings about upcoming events and projects.
At the end of the first year, we were so happy with the level of commitment and enthusiasm for the project that we have decided to continue our “year of the mitzvah” and make it “the decade of the mitzvah.” We are continually adding new mitzvah projects as members come forward with suggestions and the offer to head a project. We will grow from project to project and from strength to strength.
Listed below are our projects, with a short description of each one. As you can see, Hillcrest is and will continue to be a synagogue and a Jewish center committed to chesed.
The Caring Circle has become part of the fabric of Hillcrest Jewish Center. At this time our Caring Circle has developed an awareness of the needs of many of our Hillcrest Jewish Center members. Volunteers provide a variety of services. Visiting members has always been an integral part of our focus. However, we are also sending notes to those Hillcrest members who are homebound. We are also making phone calls and we help with shopping and with transportation. We can also help connect members with a variety of social services, if needed. If you have any questions about our program, please contact the coordinators Nancy Rifkin or Carol Kantro.
Affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism