While the COVID-19 pandemic has made the past year extremely difficult, children—and the children of Chai Lifeline in particular—have had to confront their own set of challenges. For many, that meant a rough and tumultuous year of lockdowns, quarantines, Zoom school, and socially distanced activities. Chai Lifeline made sure that our kids and their families would finish 2020 on a much brighter note, with an incredible, smile-filled, action-packed Chanukah season.read full story
More than 50,000 toys to be distributed to families worldwide at annual parties and area hospitals
Fifteen-hundred people from the greater New York area gathered to celebrate Chanukah at The Palace in Brooklyn on Tuesday, November 27, at the Chai Lifeline Annual Family Chanukah Party. Upon entering, the guests were transported into a tropical-themed paradise where they feasted on a delicious buffet dinner. The event was sponsored by Cross River Bank.
The children were entertained with many Chanukah crafts projects before enjoying a concert featuring the music of Lipa Schmeltzer, who helped get the crowd into the Chanukah spirit. At the conclusion of the party, each family was given a huge box filled with toys which were selected especially for them and collected as part of the Honey Engel Toy Drive by dedicated Chai Lifeline Toy Drive volunteers. Door prizes, festive foods, cookie-decorating, and the company of beloved volunteers and Big Brothers/Big Sisters also added to the excitement. Chai Lifeline volunteer Laurie Sutton and Floral Art were responsible for the beautiful décor, while Chavie Horn lent her talents as an event planner.
There were latkes and sufganiyot, desserts and delightful gifts at every Chai Lifeline Chanukah event this year. But what people came for – and found in abundance – were the distinctive Chai Lifeline friendship, camaraderie and support that will help them cope with the crises and challenges of living with illness or loss in their homes.
“Chanukah is a joyful season that we all look forward to,” explained Rabbi Simcha Scholar, the organization’s international executive vice president. “Unfortunately, there are myriad situations that affect the joy that families expect to experience. Some children will be in the hospital, which means that their siblings will be forced to celebrate without them. Others will be ill, but at home. Some will be saddened by the illness or loss of a sibling or parent. Our mission this time of year is to make sure that no child is forgotten, and every child’s celebration is enhanced.”
The organization goes all out this time of year. Chai Lifeline offices around the globe put their distinctive spin on the holiday. read full story