Every day, more than 160 volunteers collect bakery and pastry products, driving them to low-income school districts during the school year, and homeless shelters on the weekends and during the summer. In a given month, the group distributes approximately 84,000 loaves of bread and 54,000 bagels.
The program accounts for more than 65,000 donated hours each year, and was recently featured by NBC-4 in Los Angeles, both online and on-air. The program was one of a handful highlighted as part of the I Am A Volunteer campaign.
For the last 12 years, Jerry Magel, a long-time B’nai B’rith member, has spearheaded the daily operation of the Bagel Brigade, collecting donations and volunteers.
In September 2009, Magel was recognized for his work with the B’nai B’rith International Moe and Berdie Kudler Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service, an annual award recognizing B’nai B’rith’s most outstanding volunteer
At the time, B’nai B’rith International President Allan J. Jacobs praised Magel’s efforts:
“Jerry’s efforts with the Bagel Brigade embody the very best of tikkun olam—repairing the world. The time, effort and creativity shown by Jerry and the volunteers he works with are extraordinary and demonstrate the big effect a few people can have on the lives of others.”