Last week, LIBI USA, which supports the LIBI Fund, the IDF’s official humanitarian branch, received a modest yet meaningful donation.
The $150 donation was received from the Hebrew class of Congregation B’nai Tikvah in Walnut Creek, California, through their teacher, Julia Babka-Kurzrock. The note attached to the $150 donation stated, “In honor of the tzedakah [charity] collection of the sixth grade class of 5776 .”
“I always gently persuade my sixth grade class each year to send their tzedakah to Israel,” shared Babka-Kurzrock to Breaking Israel News. “We do various tzedakah projects. But, this time, because of the wave of terror, we felt that it was urgently needed, so we talked about that a lot in class.”
The Congregation B’nai Tikvah class places a lot of emphasis on learning about the State of Israel. Meeting after school on Tuesdays and Sunday mornings, the school strives to incorporate a sense of pride in being Jewish, connecting to Israel, Bible studies, teaching about the Holocaust, and learning Hebrew and the proper blessings on food.
“We were really touched by the thoughtfulness of this class,” noted Dr. John A.I. Grossman, LIBI USA Chairman, to Breaking Israel News. “It reminds us of the importance the IDF holds in the hearts of people of all ages.”
“With the IDF facing terror on all sides and winter’s arrival, when LIBI USA helps to supply the soldiers with winterwear for their comfort and protection from the elements, the need for donations is at a premium,” continued Grossman to Breaking Israel News. “Larger donations are our ‘bread and butter’. Yet, modest donations, especially through the efforts of young leaders let us know that the future can be bright.”
Babka-Kurzrock class always has charity boxes available for donations which are distributed at the end of the school year in May. However, realizing that the funds would go immediately to supporting the brave IDF troops, Babka-Kurzrock decided to send the contribution now, before their winter break and while the IDF urgently needs support.
During Hanukkah, Babka-Kurzrock decided to create her own “donor match challenge.” She told her students that she would match their contributions until the last day of class before their winter break.
“Instead of small change, the kids started bringing in more generous contributions,” Babka-Kurzrock shared. “A lot of kids made the commitment and brought in their own money. I am super proud of my students. They really feel compassion and see the need to support Israel at ages 11 and 12!”
Class discussions about Israel and encouragement from the teacher assistants help to bring the children to an understanding of the importance of supporting the Holy Land.
“Speaking positively about the beauty and specialness of Israel as well as sharing stories about how the IDF is the most moral and brave army in the world, create an atmosphere for people to connect and appreciate the Holy Land,” noted Grossman. “Teachers like Babka-Kurzrock are part of a thousands of years history of care and giving to the Jewish people.”