Jewish Foundation School & Council of Jewish Organizations Honor NYPD With a Showering of Purim Baskets - The Jewish Voice
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Jewish Foundation School & Council of Jewish Organizations Honor NYPD With a Showering of Purim Baskets

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Jewish Foundation School & Council of Jewish Organizations Honor NYPD With a Showering of Purim Baskets

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On Monday March 14, 2022, at the Jewish Foundations School (JFS) in the Willowbrook section of Staten Island, students had the honor to present Mishalaoch Manot Baskets to the NYPD. Inspector Timothy Wilson, commanding officer of Pct. 122, Inspector Andrey Smirnov, commanding officer of Pct. 123 were joined with about another 15 police officers representing members of New York’s finest serving in Staten Island.

Rabbi Yaakov Wasser and Mrs. Ruth Garber the principals of JFS, the teachers and students broke out into a thankful cherish as the officers entered the school’s auditorium followed by Mendy Mirocznik, president of the Council of Jewish Organizations of Staten Island, Ari Weiss, COJO, security chairman and coordinator, Staten Island Shomrim Safety Patrol, and Rabbi Aaron Zeev, Senior Rabbi of the Au Torah Sephardic Congregation of Staten Island,  David Lazar, COJO, chairman, and by Iva Reuven, COJO, service committee chairwoman and JFS PTA head.

Rabbi Wasser remarked, “Purim represents the holiday of rejoicing good over evil and saying thank you to the good people who keep us safe and secure and protected. The idea of giving the Purim Baskets to the NYPD came from Iva Reuven who besides being the head of the JFS PTA is also the COJO service committee chairwoman. Iva felt that what better way than to celebrate the joyous holiday of Purim then to present members of the NYPD with a traditional basket full of Hamantaschen and other sweet treats. The NYPD worked hard over the pandemic, and they need to know that the community and children appreciates them.”

Mrs. Ruth Garber commented, “as an educator we need to teach our children values and respect. Sadly, these important concepts and fundamentals at times appear to be taking a back seat. Iva’s idea accomplishes both from an educational standpoint. I truly am proud how the students got together and got the job done. These Purim Baskets were designed, created and filled by the students. This truly is hands on teaching.”

Rabbi Zeev remarked, “as a community Rabbi at Aur Torah, I have witnessed first-hand how diligent the NYPD are to the needs of safety and security. Over the course of the pandemic, I personally saw firsthand the NYPD and many of the commanders and officers present today in action. I have witnessed this in particular during the COJO food distributions at my Synagogue and saw how Iva Reuven, her hard-working team of COJO volunteers, Mendy Mirocznik, Ari Weiss, and the NYPD pitched in to get the job done. Today, I am proud that many of the children of my congregants who attend JFS as students are making Staten Island proud by showing appreciation to the NYPD. Thank you children for brightening up this important day.”

Mendy Mirocznik, remarked, “the pandemic hit us hard. The NYPD worked tirelessly around the clock and no matter how hot or cold the environment was to the NYPD their officers dared to care and protect our hometown Staten Island fearlessly around the clock. The food distributions at Aur Torah, the assistance with PPE and resource distributions and a determination to give back to the community and to protect Staten Island at all costs was the strong resounding positive message sent by the NYPD. Today is just a small thank you, but in actuality it is a big thank you.

The kids who may have suffered the most during the Pandemic recognize and appreciate the great heroism of our police and I know that speaks volumes and stands by itself. I must thank the awesome and incredible Iva Reuven who at the start of the pandemic volunteered and from there she became a rising star in the community. I dare say, Iva is the personification of civic work and thanks to her donation of time, skill and knowhow, COJO is able to accomplish much. There is not sufficient word I can say that would adequately do justice in thanking her. But thank you Iva for who and what you are and that is great leader and caring and considerate friend to all and a personal inspiration to me.

Mirocznik further thanked, Carina Vizhnay, Empire BlueCross BlueShield events coordinator and community relations representative, “for being an important member of the COJO Service Committee and for securing from Empire the generous Purim donation that enhanced the Purim Baskets.” Carina you just a good person and that is worth more to COJO then anything else.

Iva Reuven, commented, “I am so proud to be part of COJO and JFS and I feel blessed to live in such a great community called Staten Island. As we leave the pandemic and transition to a healthier world, I look forward to using this great network of friends to help make Staten Island a better place for all its residents. I know there will be a lot of work ahead and we are prepared to take on the important challenge.”

On behalf of the NYPD, Inspector Wilson stated, “I cannot thank the children enough. Yor outpouring of respect and appreciation makes it more than worth it for me being a police officer. Thank you COJO, JFS for doing this. It truly shows how well received good police work is. We at the NYPD look forward to our continued partnership with COJO and look forward in working with its members organizations such as JFS in making a difference for Staten Island.” Inspector Smirnov agreed with Inspector Wilson and added, “today truly is important it reinforced why I became an officer to begin with. Thank you COJO and JFS for going out of your way and demonstrating what a fine school with great students you truly are.”


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