Programs for individuals, families, synagogues, religious schools and youth groups.
individuals and families can do:
Invite a local welfare agency to match you with
a local needy family. You can then
provide the family with items from "wish lists" that the family members create.
a local Meals on Wheels program to deliver hot meals to homebound
at hospitals, shelters or soup kitchens on the sixth night of Chanukah.
synagogues, religious schools, and youth groups can do:
Clothing Drives: Winter Warm Up clothing drives
can successfully meet seasonal needs among the poor and homeless
communities. New or lightly worn
hats, gloves, coats, boots, and scarves can be collected and donated to a
local shelter. This project could
be one aspect of your Chanukah celebration, reminding the community to
engage in social action during the holiday.
Mall: Religious school students bring tzedakah money to the Mitzvah
Mall prior to the holiday. A number
of poverty-related organizations set up tables so that they can educate
the students about their work. Then
the children allocate their donations to the organizations that impressed
them. This could also be done with
adults as a synagogue or community-wide project. Contributions can be made in honor or in
memory of friends and family and given as Chanukah gifts on the sixth
Light One Candle: Congregants at Congregation Shir Tikvah (Troy, MI)
provide Chanukah gifts to less fortunate children, seniors and homeless
adults in their community in a very personal way. Participants pick one or
more candles from a large cardboard menorah, each listing the gender and
age of one recipient. The congregant purchases a gift for the selected
person and it is delivered along with the gifts bought by other
for Each Night of Chanukah
Eight Sites of Chanukah: This new ritual,
proposed by Rabbi Harley Karz-Wagman,
members to research and share websites of their choosing that relate to tzedakah causes, such as poverty on each night of Chanukah
Eight Tzedakah Actions: provides
suggestions developed by Barbara Lerman-Golomb, a member of the Commission on
Social Action, that allow individuals to participate in social action on each
night of Chanukah.