During Chanukah, the students of the CAHAL Junior High School class at Bnos Bais Yaakov took a trip to the Long Island Living Center in Far Rockaway. To break the ice, the girls took turns reading an engaging and humorous story to the residents. Afterwards, the enthusiastic group of seniors each signed the decorative “Happy Chanukah” posters the girls had created.
The highlight of the visit was a lively game of human bingo which sparked interactions between the girls and the residents that were both fascinating and entertaining. One of the residents gifted the girls with two of his truly beautiful works of art, and they hung one in their classroom as soon as they got back as a memento of their visit. Much appreciation to the CAHAL teacher and teacher assistant, Mrs. Becky Amster and Ms. Aliza Leitman, for coordinating this trip. Special thanks to Mrs. Esther Arakanchi for helping arrange for this visit.
The students reflected about their wonderful experiences at this visit.
“My partner was smiling the whole time, which made me smile. He talked about being a sailor and how he was in so many different places. He was a really good cook and would cook for 168 people a day. Visiting the Living Center was the best time of my life.”
“We read a story to the seniors, and I made a tiny speech. We had lots of fun, and I really hope I can go back there by myself or with a friend. I am very proud of myself and happy that I saw so many smiles on lots of people’s faces.”
“Today was such an experience getting to know my partner. I loved how well we got along hanging out together. It was inspiring seeing everybody laughing and bonding. We made incredible artwork, and I think the older people felt good signing it. After all the fun, we got to take a tour and got a doughnut and a drink. I don’t think it gets better than that!”
CAHAL is now in its 28th year providing smaller, more individualized classes in 11 local yeshivas. For more information about the CAHAL program and to donate to this great community organization, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-295-3666 or visit CAHAL.org.