What we thought was a one time donation on Mia’s second birthday to help a family member in need, has become a birthday tradition for Mia. For the eighth year in a row, Mia Zaretsky has been donating to those in need in lieu of birthday gifts. While we helped to choose the organizations where Mia would donate when she was two, three, and four, Mia has officially taken her birthday donation tradition into her own hands. After learning about the seven continents in third grade, Mia saw the worldwide need for help and decided she could make a difference. With the help of her family, friends, and community at Beth El, JCC camps, and Woodcrest Elementary School, Mia has officially made an international difference and has taken her collections worldwide. Her first seven years, Mia donated to several organizations in North America including JAFCO, local animal shelters, Vietnam Vets, and CHOP to name a few. Once learning she could help around the world, Mia took matters into her own hands. Last year in lieu of birthday gifts, Mia decided it was her year to help Africa. She collected close to $900 which was donated to the Africa Yoga project to help build a much needed orphanage in Africa. This year, Mia decided Asia’s pandas could use her help. She typed up information about the foundation and passed out mason jars for friends and family.
Mia collected $1150.19 for the Pennies for Pandas organization in Asia. Mia raised enough money to adopt a panda in need for one year and track what her donated money will be used for in aiding this panda. Mia’s hope is to help all seven continents over the next few years. She has already begun researching how she can help in Australia for next year. Mia’s passion, drive, and desire to help those in need is admirable and respectful. Not your average 10 year old!
Thank you to Mia for your dedication to these amazing birthday projects. We are amazed at what you have accomplished every year and very proud of the amazing dedication you have towards helping other causes.