Monday, May 5, 2008



OK, people can complain about the consumer culture, or they can do something positive with it. This girl did something positive--and she did it for other Jewish teens.

OK, so you can say "I don't think designer clothes are as important as food or electricity, etc." But one who lives for the basics day after day after day can become very embittered by the experience. You start to wish you just had one thing that was nice, and was yours. You long to be one of the "haves" for a few moments.

This young girl keyed into that. She recognized that giving charity isn't only for necessities, but also for making someone feel special and cherished.

A wise girl.


May 5, 2008 -- An Upper East Side girl made good on her bat mitzvah promise - and, as a result, dozens of teens from less fortunate families went on a designer-clothing shopping spree at a Queens synagogue yesterday.

For her bat mitzvah last year, Ali Reisner asked friends and relatives to donate money and gently used clothing for a charity project rather than give her gifts.

She spent the past year since her May 2007 bat mitzvah collecting clothes from friends and buying JCPenney gift cards with her gift money, collecting $12,000 in goods.

Thanks to her efforts, dozens of underprivileged Jewish girls from Queens and The Bronx went to the Briarwood Jewish Center in Kew Gardens, Queens, yesterday for a free day of shopping.

"I got so much money for my bat mitzvah, and I didn't want all of it," said Reisner, who'll soon turn 14. "I like shopping. All girls like shopping, so I figured the best way to help these girls out was to bring clothes and gift cards so that each girl could shop for her needs."

Grateful girls poured in to the synagogue to get some high-fashion loot and had the chance to thank Reisner personally.

"I get to shop for free," gushed Revital Aronov, 14, of Kew Gardens, who walked away with an Abercrombie & Fitch shirt and a Juicy Couture sweater. "It's really good clothing. It's not even ripped or anything, and it's so pretty."

Reisner's proud mother, Mimi, 45, said her daughter came up with the idea when they went to buy a new dress for her coming-of-age ceremony.

"Ali found the experience of shopping for a bat mitzvah dress was something she wanted to bring to other girls," Mimi said.

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