Congregation Schaarai Zedek
3303 West Swann Ave
Tampa, Floria 33609
Target Groups: Confirmation and Multi-generational Social Action Program
What began as a field trip for the Confirmation Class to pick tomatoes and learn about the lives of migrant workers in Wimauma has blossomed into Congregation Schaarai Zedek’s commitment to work Yad B’Yad (Hand in Hand) with the community of Wimauma.
The Social Action Committee started a “Mitzvah of the Month” for the migrant community in Wimauma, during which they collected school supplies, distributed baby formula and diapers, ran book drives and prepared holiday meals complete with a gift exchange for the children. Schaarai Zedek’s youth group members became “Reading Buddies” with Wimauma Elementary students.
Additionally, Schaarai Zedek runs a literacy project for Wimauma Elementary School, which has the lowest comprehensive achievement test scores in the county. They created the first Book Fair for the school, donating some 1,000 “gently used” books. Schaarai Zedek also held a sneaker drive to provide gently used shoes and new socks to Wimauma community members.
The beautiful partnership between Wimauma and Schaarai Zedek was born of a trip to pick produce for a food pantry, and turned into an extended program allowing even the youngest members of the congregation the opportunity to work hand in hand with a developing community.