I met with Johannes, one of our devoted volunteers, on Thursday 12/29 at 9 am at the center to organize everything before the kids arrived. At that time, we didn’t know how many children to expect. I was a bit afraid that no one would show up, a fear I carried with me for several weeks while making flyers for the event, advertising it, looking for volunteers etc.
This is the fifth year that the 'Psik' Theater is conducting the 'Maot Hanukkah' event, which includes different plays and a variety of workshops during Hanukkah.
This in the third year that JACC is taking part in this activity, and has become a tradition.
Johannes and I arrived at the theater after we picked up two of the community's children, and bought 'Sufganiot' at the Shuk. Thrilled (and nevertheless still filled with doubts) I met with Ornit, Ayelet and Elyan who had also just arrived at the theater to help lend a hand.
Half an hour before the first workshop began, parents and their children, big brothers and their siblings, volunteers and their students poured into the theater's main hall, where the first workshop was about to begin. While we waited for the workshop to begin they all played with one another, got to know each other, some of them quarreled a bit. We, the volunteers, got to be a part of all of this.
I counted 40 children, who ranged from ages three to fifteen. This was definitely a success.
Ariel the clown showed up and the show began. He made all of us laugh and did tricks that we all enjoyed.
After the performance, the 'Psik' Theater members surprised us with a generous offer. Because the children had behaved so nicely during the show, they invited us to have another short 'airplane workshop'.
We went into a different hall, built airplanes, and each child decorated the one he built according to his or hers particular taste.
When the workshop ended, we made our way back to the center, eating sufganiot. We enjoyed different games, made drawings and painted together. In the background were Hanukkah holiday songs.
It wasn’t long before our lunch arrived! The children were thrilled, enjoying their pizza. Then we gave each of them a dreidel.
After the event was over, at around 2 pm, we were all relived that the event turned out to be a tremendous success!
All my worries were proven to be unnecessary. Many children showed up, more than we expected. They enjoyed each other's company and got to participate in a "Hanukkah" event, an important holiday tradition most Israeli children their age enjoy every year.
This event would have never become possible without many preparations and the collaboration of:
'Psik' Theater for conducting this yearly special event.
Our devoted volunteers who helped organize the event.
All the wonderful parents and big brothers who brought the children and took care of them throughout the event.
We’re looking forward to more celebrations next year!