In an annual display of admiration, dozens of enthusiastic community members and students showed up last Sunday to thank over 300 Crown Heights rebbis with over $1M of gifts.
Hundreds of cars rolled down Kingston Avenue last Sunday, as Chabad mechanchim from the Crown Heights area were showered with thanks, appreciation, and Pesach gifts, for their tireless dedication to our community’s chinuch.
The annual event, now in its 7th year, is operated and subsidized by Lubavitch chinuch organization Igud Hamelamdim in affiliation with Chasdei Lev, with the help of Oholei Torah staff and students. The gifts are covered by the above organizations in partnership with local yeshivos.
Sunday’s event was months in the making, affording teachers an opportunity to obtain top quality discounted Pesach staples. Weeks of vigorous planning and organizing and hours of preparation–strategizing set-up, arranging street closures, renting machinery for pallet set-up and more–lended itself to a seamless distribution.
Over twenty trucks laden with over 300 pallets of Pesach gifts worth over $1M unloaded their contents on Kingston Ave between Rutland and Winthrop which had been blocked off by the NYPD for this special event. The pallets, marked with each teacher’s name, were arranged along both sides of the street ready for pickup.
Mechanchim and their family members were welcomed with a large “Thank You” banner and joyous music. Fresh popcorn and cotton candy enhanced the festive atmosphere.
Tens of energetic students from Crown Heights yeshivos boasting “Thank You” sweaters and broad smiles were on hand to load up each rebbi’s car, and a special thank you gift was handed to them on their way out.
The warm reception truly gratified the rebbis. Rabbi Shimon Gerlitzky, a third grade rebbi in Oholei Torah said, “It was so heartwarming! The boys thanked us profusely, and insisted that we stay in our cars, while they pack it up!”
Rabbi Shmuel Dechter, dean of United Lubavitcher Yeshiva Ocean pkwy, had this message for Igud Hamelamdim, “I want to thank you for the most pleasant, respectful, and orderly experience. This has certainly helped Mechanchim feel much appreciated and validated for the outstanding job they do day in and day out. A big, big yasher koach!!!”
Both teachers and volunteers left uplifted and inspired. Even the non-Jewish neighbors who stopped to ask what it was about were amazed to hear that the huge operation was all about teacher appreciation.
“Our mechanchim give their life for our children,” says Igud Hamelamdim Director Rabbi Avrohom Bluming, “It’s our honor to show them admiration and appreciation!”
Igud Hamelamdim thanks the Oholei Torah administration, for covering the yeshiva’s portion in the expenses, helping with the distribution logistics, and providing a cleaning crew. A shout out to Yossi Hershkop of Kamin Health for sponsoring food and more for all volunteers.
Igud Hamelamdim strives to recognize our children’s heroes–the mechanchim, for their role in teaching and inspiring their students to go on to illuminate the world around them.
For more information about Igud Hamelamdim’s chinuch work for our children and their teachers, and to show your support, visit IgudHamelamdim.org.