Chesed is like breathing – it is not healthy to go too long without doing it. You certainly would not want to let a year go by without doing chesed on a regular basis. Thursday afternoon is designated for chesed, though many of our students fill in other openings in their schedule with additional chesed opportunities.
Chesed starts at home. The Har Nof community has been very kind to our students over the years, hosting them for meals and offering them places to go when they need a break from the dorm and a taste of family life. So we are very happy for the chance to give a little back. The neighborhood is full of families that can use an extra pair of hands for Shabbat preparations, whether it be cooking, organizing, or watching the kids. Our students often get a lot more than they give in these situations, but it still counts as chesed!
You can choose to spend your chesed afternoon with a local family in Har Nof, helping with their children or their Shabbat preparations. You can volunteer to teach local kids to read English, or another of your skills, such as music, dance or crafts.
We can also organize other chesed activities such as helping at the WIZO Day Care Center, Shalva or Gan Harmony, where children with Down Syndrome are mainstreamed in a regular pre-school. You can also adopt a Bubby and accompany her on shopping trips and short outings. Our students also volunteer at the local second hand clothing Gemach, and packing food to give out to poor families for Shabbat. You can also volunteer at Zichron Menachem, helping families that are managing life with someone with cancer, or learn to be a medical clown at one of the Jerusalem hospitals.
Mrs. Rena Gershenfeld is constantly on the lookout for new chesed opportunities and matches up our students with activities where they can thrive.