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PumpCan Project

Teens in grades 7-12 across the state went door-to-door on the evening of October 31, Halloween, “trick-or-treating” for canned goods to donate to local shelters.

Community Contact Information:

Temple Beth Orr

Coral Springs, FL




  • Embrace the year’s NFTY Social Action theme of “combating hunger.”
  • Create a fun and exciting social action project that encourages widespread participation.
  • Engage the entire congregation in combating local poverty.
  • Give back to the community in a large-scale, meaningful way.


After learning about the year’s NFTY Social Action theme, “combating poverty,” Temple Beth Orr’s youth group created the PumpCan Project. The PumpCan Project asks teens to “trick-or-treat” on Halloween for canned goods.  This project seeks to engage members in addressing issues of local poverty as well as introduce them to NFTY.

Preparation for this project included contacting NFTY chapters across the state to encourage widespread participation. Fliers were created and delivered to NFTY members, religious school students, and congregations explaining the project. These fliers included a place for teens to RSVP. They also included a returnable slip for congregants to complete. Those congregations who were willing to donate canned goods could complete a slip with their names, phone numbers and addresses. These lists were distributed amongst PumpCan Project participants to ensure that goods were collected from these homes. Black and orange t-shirts were printed with the PumpCan Project logo on the front and the list of participating synagogue youth groups on the back. T-shirts were sold for $7 and proceeds were donated to MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger.

Project Implementation:
On Halloween, participants were split into groups to gather canned goods from neighborhoods. Participants went door-to-door collecting goods, making sure to stop at congregant’s homes. Goods were collected in family garages, to be later picked up by local shelters.

The project was a great success, gathering many canned goods. The PumpCan Project exemplified the impact that youth groupers can have on the greater community. It boasted many teen participants, engaged the greater congregation in a youth-led social action project, produced positive publicity for the synagogue and addressed the needs of the local community.

Recognizing that this project speaks to a wide audience, there are plans for future expansion including engaging additional NFTY chapters as well as other religious groups.