The community make-and-bake cookie project known as Operation Hamantaschen, was a one-day event held on March 6 at the Simon Family JCC. Its impact, however, didn’t end at the day’s conclusion when the last volunteers shook out their aprons and washed off their rolling pins.
Thank you calls, notes and emails are continuing to come into the event’s organizers: the Young Adult Division of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the JCC’s Children and Family department.
United States Jewish military troops received packages of hamantaschen (traditional pastries eaten on the festival of Purim), made by more than 130 volunteers of all ages, at Operation Hamantaschen. The boxes holding the treats were hand decorated, as were the notes of support and encouragements included in the shipment.
Packages were delivered to troops stationed locally, as well as those deployed on ships, and serving in Europe and the Middle East.
“We’ve heard from military members we have connections with, through friends and family who have been so happy to get these care packages, and from people we don’t know, too,” says Alicia Kraus, director of children and family programs.
“Fulfilling this mitzvah for Purim, and showing our appreciation to the sacrifices and efforts of our military, feels great—and is a testament to this community’s heart, its passionate volunteers, and its truly terrific lay leaders,” Kraus says.
The following email was received on March 21:
Operation Hamantaschen Committee, I just received your most welcome box of Hamntaschen; just in time for Purim! We will be holding our Purim Megillah reading and party Wednesday night and I’m sure the Jewish Soldiers will really appreciate the homemade Hamantaschen and the Purim cards. Being so far from our homes makes your efforts all the more special.
Thank you all. Wishing a Happy Purim to all the wonderful people who helped and contributed to Operation Hamantaschen.
Camp Buehring, Kuwait
To see photos from the event, visit www.facebook.com/simonfamilyj.
by Laine M. Rutherford