Bat Yam Garin Tzedek members have certainly been busy in the past several weeks! Two Tuesdays ago, on 10/19, a large group from the Garin went into the Darfuri family center in Tel Aviv to renovate one of the rooms. They took the initial steps towards making the room a gan (kindergarten) for kids from the community. The walls were painted, and many signs were made that have now been laminated and will soon be put up:
(L) Judith Wertheim, Melanie Rice, and Ari Kleinman preparing signs for the gan, (M) Ittai Eres putting up a "colors" poster, and (R) Nathan Chesterman and Laura Maschler painting were all part of a larger effort towards making the new room kid-friendly.
Expect to see an "after" picture of the room soon!
In the meantime, volunteering activity has continued with the community--both in working with individual Darfuri children in their apartments and helping to teach an adult night class. It appears that soon more opportunities may open up for volunteering with the Darfuri community, perhaps even during the daytime. Fund raising (via sale of food to Year Coursers at class) has also continued at an astounding pace. With the money raised, the Garin Members in Bat Yam have bought necessary materials to help the Darfuri community in whatever way possible--indeed, the paint and other materials used in the renovation of the gan were all paid for through Garin-raised funds.
Last Friday night, the Garin also held a benefit dinner for the Darfuris. For only 20 shekels, any Year Course participant who so desired came to the Ulpan and enjoyed a delicious Shabbat dinner consisting of soup, chicken, potatoes, and an array of fantastic desserts! Dinner was cooked by various members of the Garin, and everyone had a great time after dinner at the "Whose Shabbos is it, Anyway?" oneg. The dinner was, on the whole, a tremendous success:
(L) A large group of Garin members let their food digest. (R) Mikole Levran, Ben Klein, Nathan Chesterman, and Josh Steinman enjoy a fun game of "Party Quirks" during oneg. (B) Emilie Seckel and Cera Merrick look pretty for Shabbat dinner!
If you're interested in making a donation of any size to help fund Garin Tzedek activities in Bat Yam, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.