|Photos courtesy of CrownHeights.info
Everyone deserves to have a Happy Chanukah and nobody knows that better than the Friendship Circle.
On Thursday December 21st, the seventh night of Chanukah, we held our annual grand Chanukah party with the participation of 135 special needs children and their families. “We try to involve these young people in the activities that mainstreamed children take for granted” said a volunteer. “Some children need a little extra help socially. It is very special to be able to provide that boost” she said.
The festive atmosphere that greeted guests as they arrived was a sure indication of the fun to come.
As each child entered the beautifully appointed ballroom at the Jewish Children’s Museum they were handed a wrapped Chanukah present sponsored by the NCFJE. During the first part of the program, children were seen building lego menorahs, decorating doughnuts and chatting animatedly with Friendship Circle volunteers who reciprocated with excited laughs. Volunteer Yuda Reichman lit a giant chocolate menorah with the help of Rabbi Mendel Nemes a director of the Friendship Circle. As he completed the ceremony, volunteers and children joined voices to sing Haneiros Hallalu and Ma’oz Tzur. It didn’t take long before they were joined by the star of the evening, international singing talent Yisroel Williger. Yisroel had the crowd on its feet, clapping and singing along with his lively songs. While guests noshed from the lavish dairy buffet, aspiring Circle singers joined Yisroel onstage for a rousing medley of Chanukah favorites. The evening ended with delicious jelly doughnuts and chocolate “Chanukah Gelt.”
Friendship Circle thanks all of the volunteers without whom this program would not exist.
Special thanks to: Rabbi and Mrs. Shimon Aron and Dina Rosenfeld for sponsoring the party; Rabbi Abromowitz of NCFJE for the presents; Yossi of Weiss’ Bakery for the donuts; Rabbi Uriel & Shevy Vigler and Chabad of the Upper East Side for sharing the Menorah; Sweet Expressions for donating the Balloons; Yisroel Williger for donating his time and talent – you did a great Job!; “Webby” (Benjamin) from Crown Heights.info for all the pictures; Miriam Teleshevsky for your beautiful art work on the Menorah. For all those who helped set up: Thank you, thank you!!