‘Matza & More’ focus of Bar Mitzvah project

Since 1970, individuals, local synagogues and businesses have joined with Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Southern Arizona for Matza & More, collecting and delivering Seder food items to more than 200 individuals and families in need.

Ben_Spiegel (1)rgbThis year, 13-year-old Ben Spiegel is collecting food and financial donations for Matza & More 2014 as his Bar Mitzvah project.

“Participating in Matza & More is a family thing and this year I’ve taken on my mom’s role as the person who goes and asks stores for donations,” says Spiegel, who with his mother, Ester, and his sister, Eve, has volunteered with the program for several years.

At Temple Emanu-El, where he is a member, Spiegel is collecting food items, such as matzah ball soup, and monetary donations. “I have a donation jar and collection box at the Temple’s office and a table set up before and after Sunday school during February and March. I know times are hard for many of us, but every little helps, even if it is a dollar,” says Spiegel.

“The Spiegel family exemplifies what service to our community means. They have brought a sense of fun to the entire program,” says Nancy Lefkowitz, Matza & More 2014 volunteer coordinator.

Financial donations for Matza & More can be made online at www.jfcstucson.org or mailed to JFCS at 4301 E. Fifth St., Tucson, AZ 85711. Gift cards to buy the food can be dropped off or mailed.

Organizations participating include Congregations Anshei Israel, Bet Shalom, Chaverim, Chofetz Chaim, Eshel Avraham, M’Kor Hayim, Or Chadash and Young Israel, Temple Emanu-El, Chabad of Oro Valley, Handmaker Jewish Services for the Aging, Secular Humanist Jewish Circle, University of Arizona Hillel Foundation, Tucson Hebrew Academy, Shamrock Foods Company, Trader Joe’s and Sprouts. The Fifth Street Deli is facilitating the purchase of food and Rob Kopman donated “30 Minute Seder” haggadahs for each bag.

Volunteers are sought to help pack bags at JFCS on Thursday, April 3 from noon-4 p.m. and to deliver bags on Sunday, April 6 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m., in advance of the first Seder on April 14. Contact Lefkowitz at nancylef@usa.net or (781) 696-2085.