It is with great pleasure that I write this letter to you. I would like to share with you the beautiful things that have been done with the money you sent us.
Your Bat-Mitzva project, the "Mitzva Munchies", and your decision to donate the money that was collected to the girls who live in Sderot, allowed the girls who participate in the "Youth Futures" program in Sderot to celebrate their Bat-Mitzva in a way that would have not been possible for most of them if not for your present. We decided to allow the boys who participate in the Program to share the joy, by allocating an additional amount of money from the "Youth Futures" budget.
The celebration took part yesterday, July 8th, 2009. It was held in a banquet hall in Sderot with the girls, the boys and their parents. They enjoyed a reception with a rich buffet, the mayor deputies of Sderot took part in the celebration and blessed the teens and their families, more participates that blessed the children and their families were the director of the welfare department, the director of the community center, the city Rabbi the YF program director in the south and myself. the "Hora Shemesh"(dancing group) and "Tze'irey Sderot" (singing group) bands performed voluntarily (these bands are partially funded by "Partnership 2000" Sderot – Sha'ar HaNegev – Holand , and the performance is part of an ongoing cooperation), certificates were presented to the teens and a karaoke party was held – full of joy and high spirit.
Teens who participate in the "Keren Or" Clubhouse for teens at-risk in Sderot provided music and amplification services at the celebration.
I hope that you can feel the excitement, joy and gratitude between the lines of my letter. I would like to pass the girls' gratitude on to you, for the generous way you chose to celebrate this event in your life, when you express your commitment to your Judaism and humanity, your commitment to take an active part in the Jewish Peoplehood and live by the old and eternal values of "VeAhavta LeRe'akha Kamokha" (love your friend as yourself).
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Marci Galinkin for her assistance and enthusiasm in creating the connection between us, to your mother, Ms. Becky Van Vorst, for her dedicated involvement in turning this initiative into reality and to all of my wonderful professional and committed staff, who took all efforts to make sure that the teens will have the most beautiful and memorable Bar/Bat-Mitzva celebration: Reut Atuan – the YF program Director in Sderot, Hamutal Ben-Shitrit, the trustees coordinator, to each of our wonderful trustees and to my administrative assistant Edith Asor who gave her all to make sure everything is being done.
I would also like to invite you to Sderot and to promise you that open arms and hearts expect your visit.
Director, Partnership 2000 Sderot-Sha'ar HaNegev- and Netherlands and Eshkol-Mexico- Northeastern New York