How a trip to the shops could be a mitzvah

How a trip to the shops could be a mitzvah
| Coverage, UK
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(Photo: Sussex Friends of Israel co-founder Fiona Sharpe)

The Jewish Chronicle 9 December 2016

Israel supporters are gearing up for IsrAction Day, an initiative encouraging people to buy Israeli food products from supermarkets to donate to organisations dedicated to helping the neediest in society.

Now in its third year in the UK, the event will take place on Sunday December 18.

“IsrAction day is a way of supporting those most in need within their own communities”, said Fiona Sharpe, co-chair of Sussex Friends of Israel, one of the organising groups.

“It’s about giving to homeless shelters, food banks, and people that are in particular need during this holiday season, while supporting Israel by buying Israeli products and creating a sense of community where we all live.”

Grassroots Friends of Israel groups up and down the country are taking part, with the Zionist Federation organising local community centres and shuls around London and elsewhere, to act as drop-off points and distribution centres for the donated products

As well as the UK, communities in Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Canada, South Africa, Germany, Belgium and Norway took part in last year’s event, giving a total of £150,000 worth of goods to the needy.

Organisers are confident that this year’s IsrAction Day will be even bigger.

“We’re very excited”, said Raphi Bloom, co-chair of North West Friends of Israel. “This year we have joined with Stand With Us, who are rolling it out to all their chapters and campuses across America, which really takes it to the next level.

“It really makes it a global day of activism, engaging hundreds of thousands more people than before.”

Ms Sharpe said IsrAction Day was not meant as a response to the BDS movement.

“It’s a way for us of doing what we feel is the right thing during the holiday period. It’s a chance for people to get involved in Tikkun Olam, healing the world, within their own communities, while making sure that they also support Israeli produce.”

Participants are being advised to donate non-perishable items such as packet soup mixes and pastas.

More details at



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