By Shira Wiener
This past November, in honor of my bat mitzvah, my grandparents took me on my first trip to Israel. It was amazing! Aside from the Kotel, falafel, and the usual tourist attractions, we went to visit one of the 22 Yad Leah clothing “stores.” This volunteer-run organization collects new and gently used clothing from the U.S. and distributes it to families in need. They do so with the utmost concern for their clients’ dignity by allowing them to “shop” and pay a token amount for their “purchases.”
I realized that just from the clothing that my siblings and I outgrow, we could help so many less fortunate people in Israel. I imagined what we could accomplish if I joined forces with our community, and what an incredible impact we could make together. And so Project Fashion Forward was born. Please join me by gathering your no-longer-needed clothing and bringing them to my bat mitzvah on April 15. Trucks will be standing by to begin the chesed journey. All clothing and funds will be donated to Yad Leah, a project of Bnai Zion, a worthy organization that my family has worked with for many years. Tax-deductible donations can be made out to the Bnai Zion Foundation.
I look forward to greeting you with arms wide open, ready to accept all of those bags full of clothes!