Support world’s biggest day of Jewish giving by joining Mitzvah Day 2012

They say that actions speak louder than words – and at this year’s Mitzvah Day, thousands of volunteers will prove just that by giving up their time for a good cause.

The Jewish-led day of social action, held in partnership with the Ham&High will this year take place on Sunday, November 18.

Volunteers will give up their time – rather than money – for the UK’s largest day of faith-based social action, and schools, nurseries and offices in Camden are all encouraged to get involved.

One organisation that has reaped the rewards of taking part in Mitzvah Day is the Camden based Jewish Community Centre (JCC).

Over the past four years staff from the centre in Park End, Hampstead, which sponsors Mitzvah Day, have helped transform a former rubbish dump behind railway tracks near Hampstead Heath Station into a blossoming World Peace Garden.

For this year’s Mitzvah Day, David Yahuda Stern of the JCC, plans to rope in a Jewish school and another mixed-faith school to make the final touches to the garden, which exists only thanks to volunteers.

The 29-year-old social sustainability coordinator at the JCC, said: “The good thing about the World Peace Garden is really the message that it’s promoting. It’s a community project.

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“Everyone can get involved, irrespective of religion or background.

“Nature gives a lot of enjoyment and it’s beautiful.

“There’s something really special about coming across these huge flower beds and trees in areas where you wouldn’t usually expect to find them.”

In the past year, not a week has gone by when the garden, which is community run, has not been tended.

Mr Stern said that the soil was so acidic from piles of rotting rubbish that it took more than four years for the garden to take shape.

But now as daffodils spill out of flower pots and green grass bounces underfoot, anyone can enjoy the secret spot behind the station.

The garden is a shining example of the lasting community relations forged through Mitzvah Day projects. The Ham&High is encouraging families, schools, scout troupes, church groups, synagogues, community associations, businesses, residents associations, sports clubs, police teams, fire crews, and groups of friends to join us in taking part in Mitzvah Day.

All you need is a willing group of friends, colleagues, or family members to join you.

To take part visit the Mitzvah Day website or to join a JCC project visit