Brewing up a mitzvah – interfaith initiative to beat January blues

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Brewing up a mitzvah – interfaith initiative to beat January blues

Mitzvah Day's 'Brew Monday' encourages communities to meet over a cuppa for mental health support.

Laura Marks OBE, Mitzvah Day Chair
Laura Marks OBE, Mitzvah Day Chair

Leaders from Jewish and other faith organisations have raised a warm mug to ‘Brew Monday’ – encouraging people to reach out to others during a notoriously difficult time of year.

Taking place each year on the third Monday of January as an alternative to what is  traditionally known as ‘Blue Monday’, it has become a day to spread warmth, give emotional support and reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.

Subash Chellaiah, University Chaplain at Lincoln University

Organised by faith-led, social action initiative Mitzvah Day, and inspired by the Samaritans campaign of the same name, ‘Brew Monday’ urges people to have a brew and check in with a friend, family member, neighbour or colleague, whether in person or virtually.

Mitzvah Day CEO Stuart Diamond said: “At a time when many of us are at our lowest – with a cost living crisis, grey skies above and end of year festivities now a distant memory – Mitzvah Day is supporting the Samaritans’ Brew Monday and bringing it to our faith communities.”

He hopes that by checking in and sharing a drink with a friend or neighbour, “we can all help to build a more connected and caring world.”

UJS President Joel Rosen, CEO Arieh Miller, Sabbatical Officer Grace Silverstein

Organisations taking part in Mitzvah Day’s Brew Monday included Board of Deputies, Liberal Judaism, Lincoln University Chaplaincy, Maccabi GB, Nisa-Nashim, Reform Judaism, Streetwise, UJS and Unitas Youth Zone.

Sara Radivan, Regional Manager of the Board of Deputies, added: “A meeting with a cup of tea or coffee also makes us chat about our daily life and health which …..really can make a big difference.”

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