Yeshiva of Central Queens students had the opportunity to spend the day giving back to the community and doing chesed. With Pesach rapidly approaching, Junior High School students gave their time and effort to help bring joy and connect with others.
Grade 6 students visited local Assisted Living and Nursing Home facilities. The boys bonded with residents at Margret Tietz, while the girls traveled to Boulevard ALP. Students spent time conversing and getting to know the residents, who were extremely appreciative of the company.
Rabbi Daniel Rosenfelt, Junior High School rebbe and Rabbi of the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, noted that he was extremely impressed with the students and how quickly they were able to form a meaningful connection with the residents.
One of the residents was an Israeli Air Force veteran from the War of Independence and asked students to sing HaTikvah, and they happily obliged. Students also led model Sedarim for those attending, with divrei Torah and familiar Pesach songs.
Meanwhile, Grade 7 girls ventured to Masbia Soup Kitchen to help prepare food for those in need. They peeled vegetables and packed boxes to help those who need food for Pesach and the rest of the year. They truly brought to life the words of the Haggadah with their chesed. As we say during the Seder: “Kol dichfin yeisei v’yeichol, kol ditzrich yeisei v’yifsach – All those who are hungry, let them enter and eat. All who are in need, let them come celebrate Pesach.”
Grade 7 boys hosted residents of Ohel’s DayHab program for a Model Seder at YCQ. Students introduced each part of the Seder with words of Torah and sang songs. Their efforts helped prepare everyone for the holiday and bring in the Pesach spirit.
Grade 8’s opportunity for chesed also took place at YCQ. Boys and girls each participated in an important and meaningful sensitivity training led by Yachad. The training provided students with “hands-on experiences that effectively conveyed the challenges that people with special needs face, allowing mainstream participants to better understand their peers with disabilities.”
Students also packaged care packages for local Yachad members to help them celebrate Pesach. They wrote special messages to include in the boxes, and the boys had the special opportunity to create the packages alongside students from Yachad’s IVDU school.
“Our students put their energy into giving back to the community, and I am very proud of them,” remarked Mr. Jacob Grossman, the Director of Junior High School Student Life and Activities, and organizer of the trips.