More than 1,000 good deeds

Jewish volunteers deliver day of community service

May 06, 2002|By Stephanie Desmon | Stephanie Desmon,SUN STAFF

They prepared fields at a Glyndon farm for planting food for the hungry. They cleaned parks and streams. They played bingo with senior citizens and made care packages for people with AIDS.

Yesterday was the Jewish Volunteer Connection's third annual Community Mitzvah Day, and more than 1,000 volunteers were dispatched throughout the city and Baltimore County for a day of good deeds.

"Mitzvah means commandment, and it's not that we do it because we feel like doing it. We do it because we feel we should," said Lloyd J. Lachow of Reisterstown, who took his three children along. "I feel like those of us who have our health and food to eat need to devote some of our time and energy to people who [don't]."

Lachow spent the morning at Garden Harvest, a 100-acre Baltimore County farm that for more than a decade has grown food - with the help of thousands of volunteers - to donate to emergency food agencies. Last year, Garden Harvest donated more than 350,000 pounds of food, said Jim Dasher, who runs the farm.

The 300 volunteers who gathered in Glyndon yesterday used cardboard, mulch and straw to prepare fields that will soon hold tomato plants.

"I think I'm going to come out here when this all starts growing and see our product and see our accomplishments," said Carol Frank of Owings Mills, who volunteered with her husband and three children.

"It's really great to see all the kids and all the people helping and how much work you can get done with all the people volunteering," said Lisa Janofsky, a nurse from Owings Mills who also brought her family.

Her son Adam liked it for a 10-year-old boy's kind of reason: "I like being around dirt," he said.

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