Previous Mitzvah Projects
We are extremely grateful to the following individuals and organizations who have raised funds to help those with disabilities in Israel participate in physical and psychological rehabilitation through sports. We thank you in advance for your support!
Please click on a box below to view information and make a donation for a specific Mitzvah Project.
Hi! My name is Logan Zgodny, I will become a Bat Mitzvah on June 1, 2019. This past December I traveled to Israel with my Grandparents, aunt, uncle and my four boy cousins. One day they said we were going somewhere to play wheelchair basketball. I was definitely reluctant to go. I was thinking that while I like basketball, volleyball is really my sport! But I went. As soon as we arrived and observed what was happening at the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled, I was SO impressed! I had the best time playing with a professional wheelchair basketball player. We all couldn’t believe how amazing he was! He had us all get in wheel chairs and try it out. I thought it would be really easy to play and I couldn’t believe how hard it was. It really gave me more of a perspective of how hard it would be to be in a wheelchair. This experience moved me so much that I have decided for my mitzvah project to raise money for this wonderful organization that provides happiness for so many. I will be organizing an exercise class to help raise money to help provide more wheelchairs for those that need them.
My name is Sam Froum and I’m passionate about sports. I really like to run and play soccer. I think others should have the opportunity to participate in whatever sport they choose regardless of physical limitations. As a result, before I become a bar mitzvah I plan on running a 10-k race on June 16th, 2019 (the Evanston YWCA’s “Ricky Birdsong Memorial Race Against Hate”) and donate all pledges to the Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled. This organization focuses on empowering children and adults with physical disabilities to participate in physical and psychological rehabilitation through sports. Please help this worthy cause by donating to this wonderful organization.
With love – Sammy Froum
My Friends and Colleagues,
This November, I will be hand cycling the 26.2-mile, five-borough course, of one of the world’s largest Marathons – the NYC Marathon.
This will not be my first time – in 2011, I completed the Marathon after a severe crash, and returned in 2013 to complete it again, this time in one piece.
I was severely injured in the Yom Kippur war and since then, sport has played a major role in my life – for rehabilitation, recreation and empowerment. While being an athlete, I met people from all over the world, with and without disabilities and I have had the opportunity to inspire and be inspired.
I have had a successful career as a lawyer specializing in tax and recently I joined the Board of Directors of the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled, one of the largest organizations in the world offering children and adults with disabilities an opportunity to join the wonderful world of disabled sports.
The center is in need of funds. While serving thousands of people and families every year, it maintains a very strict budget of only 3.5M USD per year.
My goal is to raise 50,000 USD for the purchase of much needed rehab and fitness equipment for the Center’s new Adaptive Fitness Center.
My biggest dream is to establish a hand cycle club for children with disabilities at the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled. With your help – I will achieve this dream.
Any donation will be appreciated.
My name is Julian Pas and I am a 12 year old boy studying to become a Bar Mitzvah on April 13, 2019. For my Mitzvah project, I am choosing to help out the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled. Why? Sports have always been important to me, a way to be involved and feel a part of something. I also love the rush of the game times, they thrill me. I worked really hard to be able to do them.
As a child I had some health issues that hindered me from being able to do what other kids my age were doing. I had to work on my body instead. Many doctors told me that I would never be able to walk without a limp and study in school in a mainstream classroom. Well they were wrong.
I watched the video of Adam and could relate to him. This is a boy who was dealing with some of the issues I had growing up. I was so happy to see that he was able to be a part of something and find an activity that he could do and feel good about himself.
Please help me in my efforts to raise awareness and funds for the ISCD. I am planning to go and visit the facility this coming summer when I am in Israel for my bar mitzvah service at the Wall. My goal is to raise enough money to buy at least 1 kid a brand new sports wheelchair. They are so cool! Please consider honoring me by donating to this wonderful organization.
Thanks SO much!!!!! Julian Pas
Message from HAFTR Athletics Director, Joey Hoenig:
For the last two years, HAFTR athletes have been doing a lot more than going to practices and playing in games. Besides having the honor of being on a team and wearing a HAFTR uniform, HAFTR Athletics are participating in an incredible chesed initiative to “give back.”
We have searched for a charity which is awe-inspiring and is in conjunction with sports – and we found that perfect balance. The ISRAEL SPORT CENTER FOR THE DISABLED is an amazing organization that enables children and adults alike with physical disabilities to get the same lifelong benefits that sports gives us all. I took a trip to Israel last year to see first-hand what this special place does; it’s incredible to see how participation in sport rehabilitation activities builds the confidence, morale, and self-esteem of children and youth with disabilities.
This November, 2019, we will be hosting a Wheelchair Basketball Exhibition with athletes from the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled. Please click the link below and come see these amazing athletes in action! And please consider sponsoring one of our home games for $360 or sponsoring an athlete for $180.
Feel free to donate directly here. Let’s do this!
My name is Emma Goldberg. My Bat Mitzvah is in February 2019. I’m an active, compassionate, and athletic 12 year old girl. Growing up, I participated in a variety of sports including softball, dance, and gymnastics. I also enjoy golfing and swimming. Now I play tennis 4 times a week and I hope to make my high school tennis team. My dad and brothers are avid basketball players and my mom likes to play competitive tennis. Not only does my family love to participate in sports, but we are also fans of lots of different sports teams and athletes. I realize the importance sports has in our lives and how we are so lucky to be able to have so many opportunities. Unfortunately, there are many people who do not have the same opportunities as me and many do not have the necessary equipment to do so. I would like to help change this. Everyone should be able to have fun playing sports or doing what they like no matter what. This organization is the perfect fit for me because it focuses on my passion for sports and I seem to have a very special bond with children at my school who have special needs. For my mitzvah project, I am going to invite all my friends to a tennis class for 1 hour. I hope to raise $2,500 to purchase a wheelchair for an athlete in Israel.
ETHAN & LEXI COULTHARD
We are Ethan and Lexi Coulthard. We will be celebrating our B’nai Mitzvah on December 15, 2018.
As one of our Mitzvah projects we are raising money for the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled.
Sports have always been a part of our lives. We come from a very active family and have played many different sports throughout our lives. Ethan loves tennis and plays 6 times a week and would like to be on his high school team next year. Lexi loves basketball and plays on many different travel teams and has hopes of being on her high school basketball team as well. We feel passionately that all children should have access to the same opportunities that we had. This is why we are so excited about being able to help these athletes in any way we can. Please help us by donating to support this amazing organization.
Thank you- With all our love
Ethan and Lexi Coulthard
My name is Aaron Dworkin and my Bar Mitzvah is December 8, 2018, Parshat Mikketz.
Playing Sports is something that is so important to me in my life. I love playing baseball and football and follow all of the players. I want to help others have the same opportunity to be able to play sports.
Please help and donate to my Mitzvah Project.
Hello, My name is Ethan. I am a Junior Triathlete. I have challenged myself to take part in the 2018 L’Etape California by Le Tour de France this October 28th. This race is a mass participation bike ride. I will ride 60 miles climbing an elevation of 4,000 feet in loving memory of my Aunt Guita Neman who just passed and had been living life and thriving with a hemiparesis. Sponsorship for my ride will go directly to the charity, American Friends of Israel Sport Center for the Disabled which funds kids and adults from all backgrounds to participate in physical and psychological rehabilitation through sports to attain the goal of leading productive and successful lives. I came to know this charity several months ago after I set this goal to ride a year ago at the age of 10 and thought it fitting to ride and raise on their behalf. A big thank you to my Parents for their support, Kehillat Ma’arav, Velo Club LaGrange, Red Performance Multisport, Connie Cycling Foundation, Prince Mumba Track Club, Collins & Katz Family YMCA, Vision Quest Coaching, Helen’s Cycles and Bike Effects.
If the spirit moves you please share this Go Fund Me Page, with your family and friends, places of business, organizations and clubs.
With Heartfelt Thanks, Peace, Love and Bicycles! Ethan.
MYRON @ 70
Anyone who knows Myron recognizes how much he enjoys engaging with others! A true “people person”, he’s never been known to pass up a potential conversation!! And, among his human kin, he reserves a special connection, supported by empathy and admiration, for those who face physical challenges in life.
For 15 years, he has been an active booster of the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled: fundraising, promoting, advocating and bike-riding to advance the success of this most effective organization.
We feel that there’s no more appropriate way for his family and family of friends to honor, celebrate and salute him on his milestone birthday and the 57th anniversary of his bar mitzvah than to do a mitzvah project in his name and join in his support for the ISCD by dedicating a therapeutic wheelchair.
Hi my name is Jesse Rosner. I am from Solon Ohio, a Suburb of Cleveland. I chose to support The Israel Sports Center for the Disabled (ISCD) because I love to play sports and I know that there are less fortunate people than I who don’t have the chance to dribble a ball on a basketball court or run the bases at a baseball game. I want to give them a chance to play all of the sports that many people enjoy.
My 12 year old cousin Jack has a disease called SMA, spinal muscular atrophy. This prevents him from walking. I would like to see people like Jack have the chance to play sports just like me and many of my friends. This is where The Israel Sports Center for the Disabled comes in. By donating to my mitzvah project you will help ISCD provide equipment that will be used to help people like Jack participate in all kinds of sports.
The Israel Sports Center for the Disabled is a program that helps almost 3,000 kids and adults with disabilities to participate in more than 20 different sports. ISCD helps kids like Jack gain freedom, self-confidence and friendships while having fun, getting exercise and competing (sometimes at the Paralympic level).
While I was in Israel in December of 2015 to celebrate one of my brothers’ Bar Mitzvah, we visited the ISCD and I played wheelchair basketball with some of the kids who attend the center on a regular basis. We had a good time playing together! I saw first hand how the ISCD uses money it raises to help so many disabled kids and adults with disabilities. That’s why I set a goal to raise $2,500 for the ISCD, the cost of a special wheelchair used to play basketball.
Thank you for considering a donation to the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled in honor of my mitzvah project.
ROSS BERNATH, BENJAMIN ROSENBERG, & ZACH RUBIN
Dear Friends and Family,
We are excited to support the Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled as part of our preparation for becoming bar mitzvahs. This organization helps disabled athletes enjoy activities like basketball and gives them a place to reach their goals. We have been playing basketball since preschool and have decided to raise money for The Israel Sport Center for the Disabled (ISCD) because all kids should have the opportunity to play sports. Through sports, we have learned how to communicate, work together, and be good teammates. The ISCD is an incredible place where kids with all type of disabilities or injuries from illness, terrorist attacks, birth defects or other circumstances can come and play sports. We hope you will support our efforts to buy 3 wheelchairs for these athletes! Also, come see the athletes in action on Sunday, February 25 at the MJCCA – you will be amazed!
Benjamin, Ross, & Zach
ASHER LEISH & MAX MEYERS
Hello, our names our Asher and Max and we have decided to raise money for the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled (ISCD) for our Bar Mitzvah project. We have been playing sports since we were little and we can’t imagine what it would be like to not be able to play. We love sports for various reasons such as making connections with teammates, getting better at the game, and just having fun. We like a lot of sports but basketball is our favorite. That’s why we chose ISCD for our Bar Mitzvah project. As soon as we heard about this program we immediately felt a connection. We want to raise enough money so kids at the center can play basketball and other sports just like us. We are setting a goal for raising $5,000 dollars for at least two wheelchairs for the center. We want to help as much as possible.
In addition to your kind donation, we would love for you to join us and the ISCD athletes as they play in a special event at the Atlanta JCC on February 25th. Invites will be sent out soon!
Thank you so much, Asher Leish and Max Meyers
My family has always talked about the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled.
Ever since I was little I had a chance to hang out with the Israeli athletes when they came to Atlanta. I have had the chance to spend time with some great people from the ISCD. Moshe Rashkes, the founding director, who introduced the ISCD to my family and opened up his heart and home to my mom when she worked at the ISCD. Boaz, the current director, who my mom knew when they were teenagers and is really nice. Kobi, the Chairman, who is always so kind to me. Reuven, their coach, who is always giving us kisses on the forehead. Most importantly, I have had the chance to spend time with some of the amazing athletes from the center such as Caroline, Asael, Max, Amit and many more. I love hearing their stories and how they have succeeded in their lives so far. They are all great athletes and have inspired me.
Last year the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled had an event in Atlanta. My family co-chaired this event and I was able to attend. They did a wheelchair basketball event. The athletes did an exhibition and showed us some of their amazing tricks including a half-court shot. They made it look easy! After the exhibition, they had wheelchair basketball stations where we could physically try to play wheelchair basketball. It was a lot harder than they made it look!
At the beginning of the event, I saw three kids who had chosen to donate to the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled as their B’nai Mitzvah Projects. This sparked my interest. After the event, I immediately asked my parents if I can also help in some way. This is how I chose the ISCD as my Bat Mitzvah Project.
My great grandparents, Rose and Abe Luski, (Z”L), were very involved with the Sport Center. It was an important place to them. Since their passing last year, I want to continue this tradition of support and friendship, along with my entire extended family. By helping to bring happiness to the lives of children with disabilities and their families, it is a way that our hearts will always remain tied to those we love by carrying on our Bobe Rosa and Zeide’s legacy! Even though I personally do not have a big interest in sports, I still want to help in some way. The Center is not just about sports, it is about helping people with special needs rebuild their lives. It gives them something to be excited about and helps with their rehabilitation. I am proud to be able to participate in my own way.
For my Bat Mitzvah project I would be happy to have you join me in whatever way you wish in supporting The Israel Sport Center for the Disabled. Come see the athletes in action on Sunday, February 25 at the MJCCA – you will be amazed!
Hello family and friends,
As most of you know, I am celebrating my bar mitzvah in November. And as I think about what that means, I also think about kids who are less fortunate than me and how I can help them.
One place that does amazing things for kids is the Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled. It is located in Tel Aviv, and I am lucky to have visited it many times. I love to play sports, like basketball, soccer and football. And the kids with disabilities who go to the Sports Center have the opportunity to enjoy them like I do.
Every time I go to the Sports Center, I make new friends. When I was there in June, I played wheelchair basketball and tennis with the other kids. It was very challenging, and I realized what incredible athletes they are. In fact, the Sports Center has sent many athletes to the Special Olympics and many of them have won medals!
Not everyone who needs a wheelchair has one. Each wheelchair costs $2,500. I want to provide the Sports Center with two wheelchairs for kids who need them. With your help, I could make that happen. Any donation you can make to my Bar Mitzvah fund would mean a lot to me and to the children of the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled.
Thank you so much!
Love, Oren Nochimowski
Hello, my name is Ben Siwak. In honor of my bar mitzvah, I chose to do a mitzvah project. “Mitzvah” means “good deed” in Hebrew. Two of my favorite things are sports and Israel. I have always felt badly for children with disabilities that can’t play sports like I can. So, for my mitzvah project, I chose to help the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled, which combines all of these that are important to me.
When I was in Israel this summer, I went to the ISCD to see how they help children with disabilities play sports. I even played wheelchair basketball and ping-pong with some kids there. I also watched some kids play tennis and swim. It is a really cool place! The kids that I played with love sports just like I do, so it made me feel good to help them.
The director of the program told me that they need more sports wheelchairs, but they are very expensive. They cost $2500 each. I want to help the ISCD get more so that more kids with disabilities can enjoy playing sports. My goal is to raise $10,000 to pay for four new sports wheelchairs. I hope that my family and friends can help me reach my goal. I am donating some of my bar mitzvah money to help too.
Thank you for supporting my mitzvah project! Ben Siwak
Hello, My name is Lea Bassali. I will be turning twelve this October. I go to Yeshiva Har Torah, and I love playing sports with my friends especially basketball. I was on the JV team this past year. ISCD visited my school last year and I felt an immediate connection to the children with disabilities who came to visit. I felt that everyone should be able to play sports no matter what, even if they have disabilities. So, I was happy to see that they had a special sports center to do that.
When I was considering a chessed project to do for my Bat Mitzvah, all I could think about was the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled, and I decided that I would raise money for the Center. I plan to do bake sales, lemonade stands and donate the money to the ISCD. I hope to help support the people with disabilities that use the center to be able to do sports just like me. Maybe I can even raise enough money to donate a special sports wheelchair ($2500) or more, I hope my family and friends can help me collect money for this great place.
Hello, My name is Evan Klein, and I will be celebrating my Bar Mitzvah on May 26, 2017, in Jerusalem. For my Mitzvah project, I would like to raise money for the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled. Ever since I can remember, sports have been an integral part of my life. I have been a competitive swimmer since the age of 7, and I also enjoy track, cross country and downhill skiing. I watched the video on the website of an 11 year old boy named Max, and I immediately felt a connection to him. He explained that all of the young athletes at the Center, are encouraged to swim every day because it helps with their development. I feel passionately that all children should have access to the same opportunities that I have been so lucky to have. This is why I am so excited about being able to help these athletes in any way that I can. Please help me by supporting this amazing organization.
Dear Family and Friends Who Are Just Like Family,
As many of you might already know, I’m considered the “sporty” one in my family. Even though I look fancy in this picture, I’m typically in a pair of sweats, ready for a game of…whatever! I especially love basketball. I love the sport itself, of course, but I also love the pride I feel in being part of a team working together and cheering one another on. I realize that not everyone is so lucky. I was introduced to the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled when they came to visit my school earlier this year, and I was blown away when I learned what the disabled athletes there have been able to accomplish with the Center’s support. The Israel Sport Center for the Disabled is one of the world pioneers in the field of sports rehabilitation. It specializes in the physical and psychological rehabilitation of children and youth. This June, I will, g-d willing, become a Bat Mitzvah. In preparation for this huge milestone, I went on a trip to Israel, and was fortunate to have been able to visit and tour the Center, along with some of my friends. We got to meet Boaz and Caroline, both tremendously accomplished athletes. Boaz actually won a silver medal in wheelchair tennis at the Beijing Para Olympics, and Caroline has won medals playing table tennis. Boaz spoke from his heart about the desire and the need for all individuals to achieve excellence in their own ways. I totally get that! With a disability, however, achieving that level of pride and success might be more difficult. But at the Center, the talented and patient staff focuses on the abilities of each athlete, and not the disabilities. While we were there, we got a taste of what it’s like to play wheelchair basketball. Let me tell you, it’s TOUGH. Only one of us was able to make a basket, only once, and I’ll let you in on a little secret – it wasn’t me! That’s OK – I’ll keep practicing. In fact, I’d like to invite you all to give it a try yourselves! In honor of my upcoming Bat Mitzvah, and in order to raise awareness and, most importantly, funding for this incredible organization, my family and I will be hosting a special Basketball Exhibition and Experience at Torah Academy of Bergen County Gym (TABC) in Teaneck, NJ on May 17th. I hope you’re able to join us, but even if you can’t make it, please consider donating to The ISCD. Israel’s government covers only 1% of the Center’s budget. That leaves the other 99% to us!
Thanks so much,
QUENTIN ALTERMAN, JUSTIN KORNBLUM, & COOPER ROSEN
Hello. Our names are Quentin, Justin and Cooper. We are all having our Bar Mitzvah at different times over the next year. For our Mitzvah project we all felt passionate about supporting the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled. Our goal is to help people with disabilities achieve their dreams. We all play different sports, but basketball is our favorite. We want to raise $10,000 so we can donate 3-4 basketball wheelchairs to the Sports Center and to people who can’t afford them. Everybody, no matter what their disability is, should be able to play sports and live their life just like us. A couple of months ago, we had the opportunity to meet 2 kids who play sports at the Sports Center. We even got to play ping pong with one of them. They told us how important the Sports Center has been for them and how much they love to play sports. This means a lot to all of us, so we hope you can donate and support our Mitzvah project.
Hi! My name is Mady Zirlin and I am having my bat mitzvah this February. Selecting my mitzvah project was not easy, as I have learned of so many worthy organizations that require much support and attention. I was thankful to be introduced to the ISCD, Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled, this summer and was immediately drawn to the value it brings to so many boys and girls. I decided to support the Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled as my mitzvah project. The ISCD helps children with physical difficulties learn to see that they can push through their setbacks, no matter how devastating. I am a gymnast, and I chose this charity because I love to play sports. I recognize how fortunate I am to be able to train for the sport I love, gymnastics, almost everyday. However, there are some kids who may not be as lucky as I am to do all of the sports that they love. There are sports at the ISCD that disabled youth can participate in and have fun. I was able to meet Asael from the center. He explained to me how much the ISCD helped him to recover after a traumatic injury. He now plays basketball in a wheelchair. As a gymnast, I can’t even imagine what it is like for Asael and many others to get through even one practice let alone everyday life. I really admire the ISCD for helping kids still play sports even through their personal difficulties. Please recognize the truly uplifting work of this center, by donating to my mitzvah project.
Hello my name is Matthew Fahn. I am having my Bar Mitzvah November 19, 2016. For my Mitzvah project I am raising money for the Israel Sports Center for the Disabled. The ISCD is an organization that rehabilitates the physically disabled through wheelchair sports. The ISCD works with all ethnicities and faiths. I was personally touched by a video that was sent to me by Asael Shabbo. When he was 9 years old, terrorists broke into his house and killed 3 of his siblings and shot him as well. He was in the hospital for 18 months and lost his right leg. The ISCD worked with him and now he is a wheelchair basketball champion. You can click this link to watch his video he sent to me.
My goal is to raise enough money for 10 wheelchairs. Each wheelchair costs $2500. My grandparents, Mike and Nancy SItrick, in addition to their donation, said if I reach half my goal they will donate another wheelchair. Thank you in advance for helping me reach my goal.
Dear Family and Friends,
This January I will become a Bar Mitzvah. To celebrate this very special milestone, I chose to support the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled as my chessed project. I selected this charity, over many others, because I love to play sports and I realize not everyone is as lucky as me to be able to do all the things they love. I decided I wanted to help people who have disabilities but still want to play sports and that is exactly what the ISCD is all about. What I really admire is how ISCD focuses not just on physical rehabilitation but psychological rehabilitation as well. They encourage kids to push themselves to their limits and have fun while doing it. The ISCD not only teaches them how to play but trains them – physically and mentally – to become great athletes and succeed in life despite their disabilities.
Please help me support this amazing organization. I hope in some small way to make a difference in the lives of as many children as possible.
CHARITY WIFFLE BALL
This tournament was originally brought into existence by Max Schwarz as his 7th grade bar mitzvah project. The event has been passed down each year to another person with the idea that a small event like this could raise money for local and international charities in need. This year, our goal is to raise ($7,500) and all the net proceeds will go towards either MORIAH or the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled. We are looking to fill each age division and reaching our goal via registrations, raffle and sponsorship. Sign-up now, don’t miss out on the fun!
KYLIE & MORGAN GREENWALD
Hello! Our names are Kylie and Morgan Greenwald. We are having our bat mitzvahs in Israel this summer and will also be visiting the Israeli Sports Center for the Disabled. For our bat mitzvah project, we decided to raise money for this center. It is devoted to mending the bodies and minds of children who suffer from physical setbacks. Life may seem hopeless for children with major injuries because they are “different” and unable to participate in activities with their peers. This center supports disabled youth to take part in sports, which results in physical and mental healing. This center provides children with the “hope and courage they need and deserve,” which leads them to understand that they can live normal lives. Morgan had the pleasure of meeting two members from the center; Caroline and Max. Both have to play sports in wheelchairs, but this does not discourage them. Caroline plays ping pong and Max plays tennis.
We both play club soccer, and cannot even begin to imagine the struggles that youth like Caroline and Max face when playing sports. The thought of having to play our soccer tournaments in wheelchairs is incomprehensible. We admire the children who persevere through their personal physical difficulties. Please acknowledge the truly inspiring work of this center by donating to our mitzvah project.