by Fran Held
Founder & Executive Director, Mitzvah Circle Foundation
Brittany is a mother of two disabled children. After a car accident that left her with two broken legs, she can no longer work the $9 an hour job that supported her family. Without income she cannot cloth her two children for winter. She had nowhere else to turn and called Mitzvah Circle Foundation for help to provide warm clothing, coats and shoes for her kids as she recovers and gets back on her feet.
Brittany and her family can move forward as a result of the processes we have established at Mitzvah Circle. These processes, that bring hope when there was only despair, are our daily constants. Every day, our volunteers - individuals, corporate and school groups, and others work tirelessly, giving hours of time to sort and pack donated quality clothing, toiletries, household goods, diapers and school supplies. Volunteers choose how often they return - once, twice, weekly - to pack these critical necessities for people struggling under the weight of poverty, serious illness, crisis and homelessness.
The people we serve don’t ask for a new house or a car-they ask for essentials to get them through a difficult time.
While providing material necessities, Mitzvah Circle Foundation also fills a basic human need for connection. When we speak to the families we serve with compassion and kindness and deliver boxes of carefully-packed items that fill their specific needs we show people we care. We give hope and dignity where it has been lost.
The thousands of people we serve are our friends and our neighbors. They are not strangers living somewhere else—they are individuals and families walking along life's edge, right in our own backyard. For the families we serve, their lives are not as constant as the processes we have constructed. They are suffering each day—struggling---dreaming of the basics, like shampoo, that most of us take for granted.
Imagine having to choose between feeding your children or buying baby diapers. No mother wants to ask for underwear and socks for two children, an outfit for a job interview or a backpack of school supplies for a 1st grader.
We believe that every person matters. It is this belief that calls us to help those in need, to respond to immediate problems in our communities.
Today and every day, we are dedicated to improving the lives of those in need and uplifting those who give, creating a circle of kindness, hope and generosity. Picture our impact when individuals and 212 referral organizations call on us to meet critical needs, and 2,211 volunteers donate 59,789 service hours: we pack and deliver necessities 8,360 times to people in the most desperate situations.
Day in and day out our mantra remains consistent and strong; we remove barriers, eliminate bureaucracy and support people through tragedy and crisis by providing individualized material support. We are proud to impact 40,000 lives annually.
Volunteers at the Mitzvah Circle Foundation
Fran Held is the Founder and Executive Director of the Mitzvah Circle Foundation and welcomes the opportunity to talk with you about volunteering!