Written by GIVEr: Tovah Blank
Today was the second day of volunteering at emunah. It was really exciting and fun when we were able to recognize faces and the names of children we had previously formed friendships with. After davening and eating breakfast, we were able to play a few sports activities with the children and their instructor. We began with playing with tall wooden sticks, where we were all in a circle and had to try and catch each other’s sticks as we moved around. Then we played a fun exercise where there was string wrapped around a pair of people and we had to try and get out without using our hands. After that, we became guides or were guided by the children wearing a blindfold all throughout the property in afula. Then we came inside a cool room and played a really fun game of Chinese gaga, which was fun for all the kids, but especially us! After lunch, we arranged a small carnival for all the kids to participate in. Everyone was able to make an animal, flower, or whatever they wanted out of clay and also create a cup of sand art. Then we all went outside to play a really fun game of drip drip drop, which ended up turning into a huge waterfight between us and the kids, leaving most of us soaking wet! While all the kids had some free time to shower we were able to check out the nearby stores in afula, drink coffee and eat in aroma, and get candy!! To end off the night after dinner, we all played musical chairs, freeze dance, and “hamelech omer” (israeli Simon says). All the kids were super happy and having a blast and they didn’t want to leave when they had to go to bed. Once all the kids went o their rooms for the night, we walked to Ellin, who is a worker at emunah. She is so sweet and kind and made us all feel welcome and loved in her home. Ellin was able to answer some questions we had, as well as brief us on some of the histories of the kids we have grown to love and care for. We spent hours just chilling, talking, and reflecting on our amazing experience here at emunah. It’s truly inspiring to see children at such a young age with such positive and happy attitudes, despite their terrible backgrounds. For me, there was nothing more rewarding than engaging in conversations with the kids, helping them, or just making them smile. Coming to emunah has taught me to appreciate all that I have especially my family, because kids here would probably dream of a safe and loving family. I am so happy that I chose the chesed elective, and I can’t wait to create even more memories tomorrow!!