Giving to MSC Special Events

Mitzvah Project Raises over $5,000 for MSC's Baudhuin Preschool

Bryce Lechtner presenting check to Jamie Mayersohn, MSI's Director of Marketing and Development

By Nerissa Street

In the Jewish faith, a Bar Mitzvah is a coming-of-age celebration acknowledging a young man's choice to enter adulthood. With adulthood come all the rights and responsibilities of being a contributing member of your community. This step is not to be taken lightly.

When Bryce Lechtner of Boca Raton thought about his Bar Mitzvah, he knew one of the steps to adulthood included doing a good deed. He saw a need in NSU's Mailman Segal Center's Baudhuin Preschool. "The theory of Shabbat has taught me that more important than material possessions is the gift of giving," Bryce said, while giving a speech at the ceremony. "I directed my energies towards 'SUPPORT AUTISM'."

Although Bryce consciously moves toward his manhood, he hasn't forgotten the joys of childhood. The children who are served by MSC's Baudhuin Preschool are affected by autism spectrum disorders, and spend a large part of their day in speech, occupational and behavioral therapies. Although these challenging sessions prepare them for a mainstream life, each hour spent in an OT room is an hour away from play. Read more

At only 13, Bryce comprehends that a great "mitzvah" (or good deed) is preserving the innocence of childhood. Everything that gives a child joy is valuable. Knowing how difficult it is for the Baudhuin Preschool, with its limited resources, to spend money on special event activities like magic shows, petting zoos and "Snow Days." Bryce's Mitzvah project became "Put Smiles on Kids' Faces: SUPPORT AUTISM." Bryce asked his family and friends to support his goal of putting smiles on kids' faces. But this wasn't just a simple ask.

Bryce began coordinating this project a year and a half before the date of his Bar Mitzvah ceremony. He and his mother organized gourmet cake sales and sold them to family, friends and associates, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting his cause. Bryce's goal was to raise $3,000 from his mitzvah project, but with his hard work and determination, he exceeded his goal and raised over $5,000.

Bryce excitedly shared his success with friends and family at his May Bar Mitzvah celebration and presented Jamie Mayersohn, Mailman Segal Institute's Director of Marketing and Development, with a check for $5,000. Following the check presentation, party guests were invited to sample the cakes Bryce had sold for the fundraiser at a scrumptious Viennese dessert bar set up especially for them.

"Amazingly, the majority of the donations came from people who made donations without even asking for a cake in return! I am hoping I will be able to continue to raise money for this worthy cause until a cure is found for childhood autism," Bryce said.

Bryce's mitzvah project has countless rewards, but none of them can compare to the special feeling he got from coordinating a fundraiser that helped children and families.

If you would like to make a donation to this mitzvah fund started by Bryce Lechtner, please click on the Donate Online button located at: www.nova.edu/msi/ and reference 'Bryce Lechnter Mitzvah Fund' in the "Comment" field of the form. Proceeds raised will be designated to "Put a Smile on a Kid's Face: SUPPORT AUTISM" for special events benefiting the children of the Baudhuin Preschool.

Photo Caption: (above right) Bryce Lechtner presenting check to Jamie Mayersohn, MSC's Director of Marketing and Development.


Lechtner shares details of his Mitzvah project with close friends and family  Bryce Lechtner with parents, Neal and Kathy Lechtner, looking on  Following the check presentation, friends and family were invited to taste samples of the cakes Bryce sold at a special Viennese dessert bar set up especially for them.

Left: Bryce Lechtner shares details of his Mitzvah project, "Put a Smile on a Kid's Face: SUPPORT AUTISM" with close friends and family.

Center: Bryce with parents, Neal and Kathy Lechtner at B'nai Torah, Boca Raton.

Right: Following the check presentation, friends and family were invited to taste samples of the cakes Bryce sold at a special Viennese dessert bar set up especially for them.

Pictures by Santa Barbara Photography of Boca Raton.

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Evening Under the Stars

Children ages 2 to 5 years and their family members recently celebrated Earth Day by participating in the Mailman Segal Center's 11th annual 'Evening under the Stars' fundraiser.

A host of activities took place during the evening to benefit the MSC early learning program's scholarship fund. In addition to the food, and live entertainment, children were introduced to the concepts of 'Recycle and Reuse' by creating art from newspapers; they learned to appreciate the beauty in nature by planting sunflowers; the kids also had an opportunity to decorate bird houses which were hung later in the evening.

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