Mitzvah-in-a-Minute

Put a smile on someone's face. And yours.

Mitzvah-in-a-Minute (MIM) is a program that provides community service opportunities for NCJW/Essex members and others to help women, children, and families in need of assistance in our region.  Volunteers can choose to chair a Mitzvah-in-a-Minute or volunteer for a one- or two-hour event. 

MIMs occur throughout the year, and cover a wide variety of issues:  hunger and food insecurity, homelessness, and bringing cheer to children, among others.  Local agencies or organizations  in need are chosen as beneficiaries of a MIM.

Our next Mitzvah-in-a-Minute will be Purim-related in March 2024. Check out our Events page for more information. 

For more information on MIMs, please call (973) 740-0588 or email ncjw@ncjwessex.org

Read about Recent Mitzvahs-in-a -Minute

Purim Baskets
for College Students
March 2023

NCJW/Essex got a head start on Purim celebrations with a Mitzvah-in-a-Minute in partnership with Hillel of Greater MetroWest NJ. We gathered to assemble Purim baskets filled with treats for local college students preceded by an inspiring conversation about Jews on campus and much more! Chag Purim Sameach indeed!

Holiday Toy Drive
and Gift Wrap
December 2023

Nearly 40 volunteers came together for our annual Mitzvah-in-a-Minute to wrap more than 300 gifts for children at Focus Hispanic Center for Community Development and children of Center for Women clients.

Fall Food Drive
November 2023

Volunteers packed 200 shelf-stable lunches for Christine's Kitchen in West Orange and assembled holiday food bags for our Center for Women clients.

Annual Diaper Drive
September 2023

Our 2023 Diaper Drive once again supported National Diaper Need Awareness Week,. We collected boxes and boxes of much-needed diapers which were donated to donated to the Interfaith Food Pantry of the Oranges. 

Celebrate Women
May 2023

We collected gently-used handbags and totes and filled them with treats - both practical and pampering - for our Center for Women clients.

Helping Homeless
and Trafficked Youth
March 2023

This MIM was an opportunity to provide much needed bath, grooming, clothing and other items for residents at the Covenant House Newark Shelter. We also provided small gift bags to residents with our hand-written notes of encouragement and support. 

We are collecting gently-used handbags and totes and will fill them with treats both practical and pampering for our clients who are seeking work. Dig deep in your closet as you are spring cleaning and drop off any bags at the NCJW/Essex office by May 3.  Patty Kremen, Director of the Center for Women, will join us to share more about the work she and her team do in support of women who are entering or re-entering the workforce. The CFW has served a record number of clients this year, and continues to provide career counseling, empowerment training and more.

Click here to sign up! 

 

The Covenant House Newark Shelter provides immediate housing and care for more than 800 youths ages 18-21 every year. Homeless and trafficked youth suffer disproportionately from trauma, sexual and physical abuse, involvement in the foster care system, domestic violence, mental health challenges, and life on the street. Our March Mitzvah-in-a-Minute is an opportunity to provide much needed bath, grooming, clothing and other items for residents at the Newark Shelter. We will also be providing small gift bags to residents with our hand-written notes of encouragement and support.  Click here to read more about the event.

Food insecurity affects approximately 40 percent of college students.  Our January Mitzvah-in-a-Minute hosted a collection for the Red Hawk Food Pantry on the campus of Montclair State University.  Our volunteers sorted, counted and weighed donations before delivering them to the pantry. Thanks to the generosity of NCJW/Essex members and friends, we were able to provide nearly 2000 individual food items and almost 800 personal care and household items. Together it was 800 pounds of donations!   Read more here. 

Read more about our 2022 Diaper Drive in support of National Diaper Need Awareness Week, with donations going to the Community FoodBank of NJ and the Interfaith Food Pantry of the Oranges. 

Read more about our Fall Food Drive and how we put together lunch bags for Christine’s Kitchen in West Orange and our own CFW clients.  

Read more about our Holiday Toy Drive and Gift Wrap  for clients of the Focus Hispanic Center for Community Development and our own Center for Women.  NCJW/Essex was happy to partner with  LTownCares and Coldwell Banker Realty to provide holiday gifts.

The recent Mitzvah-in-a-Minute Book Drive was a big success! We collected over 300 books for Alex’s Book Club Cart, an annual book drive that collects new books for Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center’s Pediatric floors. 

Alex’s Book Cart was established to honor the memory and legacy of Alex who passed away in 2018 at age 11. Alex “was an amazing boy who was filled with joy and happiness” and one of his favorite things was books. The new books will be added to the book cart in the Pediatric Unit and the Pediatric ICU of the Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center. During their hospital stay, children and teens will receive books that they can use during their stay and then take home. It is the hope that this will provide some comfort during their hospital stay. 

Thank you to everyone who participated for your generous support. 

Mitzvah-in-a-Minute Book Drive

 MIM Book Drive Co-Chairs Justin Hirschtritt and Tara Heyderman

“I want to make a difference in my community by volunteering, leading, organizing, contributing.
Where else can I do so much and have so much fun? NCJW/Essex suits me perfectly.”