Open House for Inter Faith Week & Mitzvah Day

A young girl sitting at a table with blue cloth, glue, and red pots of stickers and gems for a craft activity

On Sunday 18th November we hosted our annual Inter Faith Week & Mitzvah Day Celebration. For the third year running the museum opened its doors to welcome all visitors free of charge.

Visitors were able to engage in a variety of different activities throughout the building. By far the most popular was our Bread Baking for a local homeless shelter. Visitors are able to participate in making challah bread, a traditional plaited bread eaten during Shabbat—the Jewish Day of Rest. We were proud to donate three full trays of freshly baked challah to the shelter.

We also had a variety of arts and craft activities on offer. Everyone enjoyed making Keepsake Boxes, decorating their own Tzedakah boxes, making friendship bracelets and having a go at doing some Hebrew scribing.

For the first time, we also had an Inter Faith response Tree which was made by some of our lovely Work Experience Students. We asked visitors ‘Why is Inter Faith Week important?’ and ‘What does Inter Faith Week mean to you?’ Visitors could then record their responses on to hand print and leaf shaped cut outs, decorate them and stick them onto the response tree. The result was a beautiful display of positive Inter Faith messages.

Overall the day was a huge success with over 140 people attending—our largest audience for Inter Faith Day so far! Feedback left by visitors on the day was overwhelmingly positive with people saying that they felt happy, proud and compassionate to help others in need.

It was so rewarding to see so many people participate in the activities on the day. It was also really important to us to offer free entry during the event for a few reasons. Mitzvah in Hebrew means ‘commandment’, but it also means ‘good deed.’ Cost can sometimes be a barrier for people to visit museums, so it is great to able to take this barrier down. It also feels good to be able to do something kind for other people, especially on Mitzvah Day.

Here’s a selection of photos from this wonderful day:

A young girl sitting at a table with blue cloth, glue, and red pots of stickers and gems for a craft activity An infant boy sitting on a carpeted floor and rug holding a white balloon with multicoloured logo on that reads Inter Faith Week An adult male stands at a table of children. On the table is lots of card, glue and other craft activities And adult female mixes batter in a white bowl for a young girl in a red dotted coat.