Mitzvot from the Heart: Alanna Grossman

Alanna Grossman, Congregation B’nai Amoona 

Alanna wanted to help kids with cancer just be kids. Daughter of Marla and Jeff Grossman of Chesterfield, Alanna collected new toys and games for Friends of Kids with Cancer, an organization devoted to enriching the daily lives of children undergoing treatment for cancer and other blood-related diseases. 

Unfortunately, both of Alanna’s grandmothers were stricken by cancer. She decided to help some of the youngest cancer patients get through their long hours of chemotherapy, illness and isolation by making their day a bit brighter and fun. 

Alanna distributed flyers to the students at Pardes, Congregation B’nai Amoona’s religious school and put a collection box in their lobby for several months. She also held a collection day at her home, where friends and family came to deliver toys, dolls, art supplies, electronics, games and more. She could not believe how generous everyone was.  Friends came with not one, but many gifts in hand. Close to 100 games and toys were donated. “It was truly unbelievable,” said Alanna. 

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A student at Parkway Central Middle School, Alanna wanted to make a statement at her bat mitzvah. It was important to her that the congregation actually see what she collected for her mitzvah project when she mentioned that in her speech. So, instead of the typical food baskets on the bimah, her baskets were filled with some of the games and dolls.

 “The full baskets looked great on the bimah, both wrapped with big pink bows. It truly made Alanna feel like she had accomplished an amazing mitzvah for children who needed some happiness,” said her mother. 

Alanna looks forward to helping Friends of Kids with Cancer throughout her life. “Now that I know about this organization, I’d like to help by holding more toy drives, attending events to raise awareness and money, or maybe even hosting a bake sale (baking is one of my passions) and give the money raised to this organization,” she said.