Results tagged ‘ MItzvah project ’

Raising the Bar

by David Rhode

For any of you who’ve followed Pitch In For Baseball you already know what I’m about to say.  I don’t know where we’d be without the support of families and primarily boys getting involved with us as part of their Bar Mitzvah.

For those who may not know, a Bar Mitzvah (male) or Bat Mitzvah (female) is a rite of passage in the Jewish faith where at the age of 13 you become accountable for your actions and part of the adult community.  In practical terms it normally means you have an awesome party and get a lot of gifts.

In conjunction with a Bar or Bat Mitzvah, the young person is many times required to do a “Mitzvah project”.  A Mitzvah is a act of kindness.  This normally materializes into the young person getting involved with some cause or charity that has personal meaning to them.

Fortunately for Pitch In For Baseball (PIFB), a lot of 13 year old boys care deeply about baseball.  In our seven+ year history, literally hundreds of boys (and a few girls) have chosen Pitch In For Baseball for their Mitzvah project.  In most cases the young person will conduct an equipment collection in their league or in the synagogue.  However in recent years, many young people have also started to fundraise on behalf of PIFB.  This is actually quite simple in this era of online fundraising.  Kids can create their own PIFB affiliated fundraising webpage.  They email this link to friends and relatives and then off we go.

I’m rarely surprised by the results anymore.  Kids and their network of supporters are very caring and generous.  But I have to say that I was caught off guard in the case of Murray Lebovitz.  Murray is from Tennessee and while the results are not yet complete, he has raised the bar on fundraising for us to new heights.  Through this morning, he has raised almost $8,000 to benefit our organization and kids we serve.  It’s simply awesome.

(Murray Lebovitz)

In practical terms, Murray and his efforts will help fund an entire 4 team league with new equipment.  That’s a little more than a Mitzvah.  In baseball terms, that’s a grand slam.

Invariably when a child has a giving heart and a desire to help others, you need look no further than the parents to see where it comes from.  Obviously Murray’s folks have made it clear that helping others is not just a requirement, it’s what we do.

A Mitzvah is not just an obligation or a box to check on your way to your Bar Mitzvah reception.  It’s both a responsibility and a privilege.  Murray Lebovitz and his family have set the new standard for our organization.  Pitch In For Baseball and the children we serve as so glad that they did.

A True Mittsvah

by David Rhode

Somehow Pitch In For Baseball has become a great landing spot for young boys and girls who are required to conduct a Mitzvah Project in preparation for their Bar or Bat Mitzvah.  Truth be told, I’m not sure what Pitch In For Baseball would do without them.

Kids are truly the backbone of our organization.  They collect equipment, raise funds, volunteer time in our warehouse.

For those of you not familiar with the term Mitzvah, it’s a Jewish word and loosely translated means “an act of human kindness or good deed”.

In the last 7 years, well over 100 kids have chosen Pitch In For Baseball for their Mitzvah project.  It’s really a great experience for the kids to translate a passion they have for baseball to a meaningful act of philanthropy in helping kids who are less fortunate to be able to receive the equipment needed to play.

This past year we’ve had dozens of great projects and to choose the “best” one is like a parent have to say which child they love the most (Casey).  That said, Jacob Gurvis of Newton, Massachusetts collected a 2011 best 105 gloves  in addition to numerous other items that benefited kids in need.  He called his effort a “Mittsvah”, which was not only creative, but apparently effective as well.  Jacob put together a short video describing his involvement with our organization.  Listen in to hear in his words why connecting with PIFB was meaningful to him.