Our B’nai Mitzvah Campers, Rachel’s Table and Masks – Find out how they are all connected!

Many of our campers and their families had been preparing and planning for their B’nai Mitzvah for several years, only to have their plans drastically altered due to the need to socially distance from others during the COVID-19 pandemic. We understand the extraordinary challenge that this presents to the B’nai Mitzvah themselves and to their family and friends and that undoubtedly many are disappointed.

Becoming B’nai Mitzvah remains a key milestone to be celebrated. We want to wish the following campers and their families a heartfelt mazal tov on their recent or upcoming B’nai Mitzvah (we apologize if we have missed anyone):

Avital Baer, Allyson Benblatt, Serena Berk, Noah Brauner, Abigail Brodsky, Elior Cohen, Daniela Cotlear, Boaz Dauber, Eytan Edelman, Annie Gerson, Sari Goldstein, Aaron Gorowitz, Lily Green, Devorah-Sarah Heesch, Layla Kaunfer, Zakai Kelly, Ariella Klugman, Eve Kobell, Matan Lerner, Talia Lurie, Reuven Magder, Elijah Margolis, Oscar Mendelson, Jamie Micek, Jessica Michael, Flora Pelton, Adella Perkal, Shane Ripps, Alexa Schnur, Nathan Selig, Ayelet Shames, Sam Shefsky, Elijah Silbert, Dalia Singer, Jacob Stephenson, Reese Udler, Joseph Vaisman, Sarah Wayne and Leo Winston

For many years now, Ramah has made donations to Rachel’s Table in honor of all Ramahniks who are celebrating their B’nai Mitzvah. Rachel’s Table is a food collection and distribution center in Springfield, MA, near Camp Ramah New England, that provides food assistance to emergency shelters, pantries and soup kitchens in western Massachusetts. It also delivers kosher meals to Jewish families in need.

Every day we hear more and more stories about how people are devising creative ways to help others in need during this COVID-19 epidemic. We would like to share with you how Becky Sherman, long-time Palmer Misrad (Office) Receptionist, and her sister, Cindy Lynch (who has also worked in the Misrad), are using their sewing skills to help others during this time, and in the process have made it a family affair.

In late March, Becky and Cindy began sewing masks for their friends and family and began offering up their masks on Facebook. A member of Becky’s synagogue, Sinai Temple of Springfield, MA, saw the posts and reached out to her. This congregant wanted to sell these masks and donate the proceeds to Rachel’s Table, one of her favorite organizations, and placed an order for 300 adult and children’s masks.

Camp Ramah New England was so pleased to learn about the Sherman/Lynch mask-making endeavor, particularly given Ramah’s relationship with Rachel’s Table.

Becky and Cindy were equally thrilled to contribute to this philanthropic effort but were a bit overwhelmed with this ambitious order. They had been sewing and delivering the masks themselves but now needed their husbands’ help to increase output. Jim, Cindy’s husband, discovered that his Long Arm Quilting Machine could quickly attach the ties to the mask. Scott, Becky’s husband and Palmer’s Camp Driver, helped by delivering the masks.

To date, Becky and Cindy have produced over 1,200 masks, generating as many as 100 a day when needed. Interest continues to grow for their masks, with local organizations and companies like Dunkin Donuts inquiring about their masks. Becky shared that should camp be in need of masks this summer, they will produce as many as needed, and if necessary, reach out to their local mask-making community to assist to fulfill our needs. Kol hakavod (all the honor) to Becky, Scott, Cindy and Jim for the work they are doing to keep our community healthy, and for their part in helping to feed those who are hungry during these challenging times.


Categories: Tikun Olam