Since the inception of GIFT’s Shabbat Walk initiative many hundreds of teenage volunteers have given ‘forward’ their time on Shabbat afternoons to brighten the days of those in care homes, hospitals, or who just need a little extra assistance at home.
The Shabbat Walk project has also expanded to midweek volunteering with teenagers helping parents at home with their newborns or children with special needs. Currently, the GIFT Shabbat Walk, primarily based in London and Manchester sees on average 200 teenagers volunteering each week.
17 year old Zevi Heller and Moishe Hirsch from Menorah Grammar School are regular Shabbat Walk volunteers. Last Friday afternoon, erev Pesach, they went to St Pancras Hospital to make an early Seder for the Jewish patients. 93 year old Henry Levy, was also in the hospital and was thrilled to be partaking in the Seder. He was often heard singing chazanut from his hospital bed.
Henry sang Dayeinu with The Shabbat Walk boys and thoroughly enjoyed the Seder.
Henry Levy passed away peacefully later that night. His son Daniel was hugely comforted and moved by the knowledge that his father had had such a beautiful and spiritual end of life experience.
Eliezer Gilbert who initiated the GiFT Shabbat Walk 2 years ago, and who himself, ran the Mock Seder in Jewish Care’s Sydney Corob House; is very encouraged by the knowledge that so many volunteers are inspired to give of their time to help others and in particular these boys who on this occasion provided such a special experience for Henry O’H.
GIFT (Give It Forward Today)’s twin objectives are to inspire young people to be givers and to help those in need.
GIFT volunteers distribute weekly food parcels and provide practical support to over 2000 people across London and Manchester as well as offering tutoring help for children after school and in Sundays.
To volunteer your time or resources, please contact or call 0208 457 4429