When 12-year-old British immigrant Yazmine Bloch was preparing to celebrate her Bat Mitzvah on Purim, she realized that many of her guests would be unable to attend due to the coronavirus pandemic.
So instead, the young girl decided that her gift money will go to a different cause: Helping children with disabilities.
A fourth-generation volunteer, Yazmine set up a crowdfunding page through Israel Gives to donate to the ALYN Orthopedic Hospital and Rehabilitation Center in Jerusalem, and successfully raised over NIS 70,000.
She was inspired by the story of Megillat Esther, which she had learned to read for her Bat Mitzvah, as well as her family history with helping to donate and volunteer for the hospital.
"I would prefer that all money received by way of gifts go to the children of ALYN," she said in a video, adding that the money would especially help with another passion of hers: music. "Given the fact that music is a passion of mine, I am so excited to raise funds to create musical instruments from scratch, so that every child at ALYN who wants to play a musical instrument of their choice can do so despite whatever their physical limitations."
Her efforts paid off, with Yazmine far surpassing her expected goal and raising a total of NIS 70,300 for the hospital, thanks to 149 donors.
ALYN specializes in helping children with disabilities, and Yazmine is happy to be the fourth generation in her family to help support the hospital.
"I'm the fourth generation to be helping these truly deserving and courageous children to have the best life possible, both now and for the future," she said.
The video ends with a quote by the late Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks: "The best way of breaking down barriers between people or communities is through simple, unforced acts of kindness. One act can undo years of estrangement."