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When Purim starts in December…

06 March 2020

Dig deep in your pockets for Kisharon on Tuesday, and spare a thought for our ace team who started planning this Purim last December.

Back in December, Chavi Pappenheim, a former Kisharon employee, and colleague Mimi Steinhaus began drawing up their plans to maximise the potential of Purim as a key fundraising opportunity. Their aim, over their many years of Purim planning for Kisharon, is always to ensure that fundraising exceeds that of the previous year. But it’s not all plain sailing.

Chavi recalls the heavy snowfall and icy conditions of Purim 2018. “We still raised some money but certainly not as much as we hoped.”

Their first priority is to recruit collectors. Kisharon Head Office runs a campaign to recruit collectors and Chavi and Mimi – who was invited to help when the workload became too great – enrol their own families and friends who in turn recruit collectors themselves. This year the pair have distributed 500 buckets, 200 collecting tins and have visited many schools across Hendon and Golders Green asking pupils to make Kisharon their Purim charity.

But, long before distribution begins, every bucket is labelled and recorded on a spreadsheet so monies collected can be recorded accurately. Along with the buckets and tins, individual collectors get T-shirts, labels for their mishloach manot as a gift, and information about the iPod Touch, Bluetooth Wireless headphones and Amazon voucher they can win for collecting the most money or wearing the best fancy dress.

In the weeks before Purim, Chavi and Mimi work flat out on deliveries. Their distribution area goes beyond Hendon and Golders Green, to St John’s Wood, Elstree, Mill Hill and Edgware.

“There’s generally a rush at the end to give buckets to people who have asked for them at the last minute.” Chavi says.

Seeing funds come in for Kisharon is gratifying, and shows that the hard work has paid off but the job can be stressful.

Chavi says: “Every bucket and tin must be delivered. Once Purim starts it’s too late.”

But what do Chavi and Mimi do on Purim itself – other than sigh with relief that the deliveries are done? “We have fun with our families, but with our Kisharon buckets, of course.”

PHOTO: Work starts early for Chavi and Mimi

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Pirkei Avos
“The world stands on three things: Torah, the service of G-d, and deeds of kindness.” Kisharon looks at the person not the disability, teaching Torah, Middos and Mitzvot embracing and cherishing everybody’s special talent and bringing out the best in them.