Fundraisers were out in force for the United Jewish Israel Appeal (UJIA) recently, with a fun run and bike ride taking place.
Three UJIA Ethiopian Bar/ Bat Mitzvah (EBBM) programme participants raised £1,500, around £300 more than their target, by completing a sponsored 5k fun run in Heaton Park. The trio that took part were Olivia Lederberg, Ella Rose and Pearl Benjamin, all of who are from Whitefield and aged between 11 and 12. Their fundraising efforts will go towards the sponsorship of an Ethiopian Israeli child currently participating in the UJIA EBBM programme and living in Kiryat Bialik, Israel.
Charlotte Benjamin, Pearl Benjamin’s mother, said: “We are all so incredibly proud of our girls for their achievement at such a young age. We are delighted that they have surpassed their fundraising target, and would like to thank everyone who kindly donated to such a worthy cause.”
The UJIA north to south bike ride was also a success, raising over £195,000 as 47 participants cycled the length of Israel. The proceeds from the 601.9km ride, which was completed over five days, went to the UJIA and fellow charity A Smile for Orly.
This year’s ride was dedicated to Darren Walshaw, a former rider, known as a Hubnut, who passed away recently, and a plaque in his memory was unveiled by his two brothers at Carmiel Children’s Village.
UJIA committee chair and organiser Andrew Kingsley said: “I’ve been involved in UJIA for over 30 years. Seeing the projects we have helped support really made me emotional and reminded me how important this work is. Raising such a huge amount on this challenge means we can help even more people who need it in Israel. The highlight of this trip was unveiling a plaque at a refurbished group home in Carmiel Children’s Village, in memory of a very good friend, Darren Walshaw, and also seeing what a difference it would make to the children who will use this house for many more years to come.”
The cycle route included Darca Danciger high school, which is being refurbished with help from the UJIA, and also took the cyclists from Kibbutz Kfar Gilady to Nir David, the second stockade and watchtower Kibbutz in Israel, down Route 90 to the Dead Sea, up the treacherous Scorpions Ascent and past Ben Gurion’s grave on the way to the Ramon Crater.