San Diego Jewish Academy gives back to the community and beyond

Check presentation ceremony with the five selected organizations.

Students at San Diego Jewish Academy are giving back to their community and beyond through a charitable project that reflects the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam – “Repairing the World.” The Tamchui initiative, part of the Michan and Krongold Family Tikkun Olam initiative, collected $7,168 through the donations from San Diego Jewish Academy families, faculty and a generous donation from the Chortek and Weisman families.

Now in its second year, Tamchui, an Aramaic word that means “community collection pot,” is a keystone project of the Michan and Krongold Family Tikkun Olam Program. For their Tamchui project, 8th graders received presentations the week before Hanukkah from five selected organizations--Feeding San Diego, San Diego G’Mach, Ride Above Disability, A Bridge for Kids, and Jewish National Fund. 8th grade students then made presentations to the entire K-12 student body about each charity.

The week leading up to Hanukkah, all SDJA students “donated” by placing poker chips in clear boxes corresponding to their charity of choice, in a designated area lined with posters describing each charity. The culmination of the event was Friday, Jan. 17, when the charities were presented with giant checks in support of their organization. That preceded Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, which is a federally designated National Day of Service.

“Hanukkah was a unique opportunity to teach that giving back can be more important than focusing on material gifts,” says Chaim Heller, Head of School at San Diego Jewish Academy, who teaches 8th graders as part of the charitable education program at the school. “This is an especially powerful project because the students are learning about charities and experiencing the impact they can have all at the same time. They craft the charitable action and they really see the change they can create in the world.”


Lower school students cast their votes at Tamchui central.

As part of their learning experience, Heller’s 8th grade class selected Feeding San Diego to participate in Tamchui

“Feeding San Diego is honored to have been selected for the Tamchui Project by San Diego Jewish Academy,” said Vince Hall, CEO of Feeding San Diego. “This charitable project is a unique opportunity for students to gain a deeper understanding about community issues and the power they have to create change. We look forward to exposing students to the fact that one in eight people face hunger in San Diego County and that there are various ways they can help us end hunger through food rescue. -- News release

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