Thanks to anash, bochurim, and girls from the Crown Heights community, over 3,500 Yidden in Sheepshead Bay were able to celebrate Pesach. Here’s the story behind the success.
As Pesach approached this year, the Chabad of Sheepshead Bay Outreach Program embarked on an ambitious goal: to distribute 3,500 packages of matzah to Jewish families in their area. With determination, perseverance, and some sleepless nights, they pulled off a huge distribution of matzah in New York City.
So how did they do it? How was it possible that one team personally delivered matzah to 3,500 families?
The answer lies in the revolutionary approach that the directors have taken to harness the unique power of the anash and yungeleit in Crown Heights.
For many who attended Yeshiva, mivtzoim may well have been the highlight of the week. It was an opportunity to give, to inspire, and to fulfill the Rebbe’s wish that everyone be involved in hafatzah. The directors realized that many yungeleit and anash want to continue being a part of that and wish for their kids to experience it as well.
Seeing this well of opportunity, the outreach program began to incorporate them in their massive mivtzoim operations throughout the year. As time went on, the system became more efficient with an organized database and detailed, updated routes. Indeed, this past Chanuka saw an unprecedented amount of menorahs distributed with the help of these volunteers.
But this Pesach was something special.
As word got out that Chabad of Sheepshead Bay had mivtzoim opportunities available, people began to reach out. Mrs. Chana Gellard, who organizes mivtzoim activities before the yomim tovim, arranged for two busses (!) of girls from Beis Rivka, Bnos Menachem, Beis Chaya Mushka, and other schools in Crown Heights to visit people and distribute matzah, reaching hundreds of people in just two days.
With the help of Rabbi Dovid Okunov, anash from East Flatbush also took part, bringing their families to participate in the Rebbe’s call for mivtza matzah. Along with dozens of pairs of bochurim, these groups brought matzah to 2500 Jewish homes in the area. 11 street mivtzoim stands manned by bochurim managed to distribute close to 1000 packages, with the overall total reaching 3500 by the time Pesach arrived.
“We want to wish a big yasher koach to all those who took part in this year’s mivtza matzah in Sheepshead Bay,” the organizers said. “With their help, we enabled thousands of yidden to fulfill the mitzva properly and no doubt the Rebbe had much nachas from our efforts.”
The program was led by Rabbis Menachem Halperin and Yankel Katzman, and directed by Rabbi Yitzchok Schwartz, Director of Outreach at Chabad Sheepshead Bay.