Maxwell Miller is from East Hills, New York and has created a Mitzvah Project called, Max ¢ent$ 4 $unrise (M¢4$).
This project will benefit Sunrise Day Camp, the first dedicated day camp in the United States for children with cancer, and their siblings, which is completely free of charge.
Max hopes his Mitzvah Project idea can spread to other towns and we hope so too!
We asked him some questions to learn more:
MM: Why did you decide to take on this particular project?
MM: My family has been involved with helping Sunrise Day Camp since it’s inception. My parents are chairpersons of “Friends of Sunrise,” an organization that plans events and fundraises for Sunrise. In addition, my father also plans and participates in volunteer days during the summer at the camp. As a family, we go every year to plant flowers on the campgrounds, and participate in the annual Sunrise Walkathon. I’m also excited to have my Bar Mitzvah Havdalah service and celebration at the newly built Sunrise Day Camp Pavilion. When I was in first grade, one of my friends was diagnosed with cancer. He and his brother were both given the opportunity to go to Sunrise Day Camp, which gave me an even more personal connection to the camp.
MM: Can you give us details of your Mitzvah Project?
MM: “Max ¢ent$ for Sunrise” (M¢4$) is a recycling program that turns trash into cash for Sunrise Day Camp, while at the same time helping our environment. We are currently collecting recyclable bottles and cans from over 50 homes in my neighborhood, as well as several local office buildings and public venues. We have partnered with a recycling company that picks up the bottles and cans, and donates the money from the deposits to Sunrise Day Camp.
MM: Does your project have a start and end date, if so what are they?
MM: I started my project in February, 2013 by launching a home pick up service in my neighborhood. The best part about my project is it will continue to help Sunrise Day Camp long after my Bar Mitzvah has passed. There is no end date for my project.
MM: In your own words, what does it mean to you to do a Mitzvah Project for your Bar Mitzvah?
MM: My Mitzvah Project is like answering the extra credit question on a test. Becoming a Bar Mitzvah is about dedicating yourself to the principles of the Jewish religion. By working hard at making my Mitzvah Project a success and helping children with cancer, I’m showing my commitment to try to be a better person and a better Jew. Which is what I think a Bar Mitzvah is really all about.
MM: What are you doing to spread the word?
MM: To get my project started, I sent letters and emails to friends and neighbors, encouraging them to collect cans and bottles for Sunrise Day Camp. My dad and I drove around and supplied them with plastic bags to use to collect bottles and cans. We have continued to spread the word in our community by word of mouth. Wherever we go, we speak to our friends and family and try to bring this program to their schools, businesses and organizations.
MM: For how long can people donate to this charity?
MM: This charity is set up to keep going for as long as I can run it. People can continue to support Max ¢ents For Sunrise long after the date of my Bar Mitzvah. If you want to bring MC4S to your business, school or organization, we can arrange to provide clear plastic bags and pick up service. We also have the ability to organize a joint fundraiser with other charities using our pick up service. For more information contact my Dad, David Miller at email@example.com.
People can also make direct cash donations to Sunrise by contacting Beth Fetner at 516-634-4196 or at bfetner@FriedbergJCC.org.
We would like to thank Max for sharing his terrific Mitzvah Project with our readers. We hope it inspires you to start something similar in your hometown.
To learn more about the work at Sunrise Day Camp, visit their Website.