Holiday Giving For Community Families

Holiday ShopFor many the holidays are a time for joy, reflection, and family fun. The holiday season reminds us of the struggle low wage-earning families have, simply trying to make ends meet. A single parent earning $10.00 an hour has little left after paying rent, groceries, child care tuition, and basic necessities.

YOU can help create a holiday memory for a struggling Morris County family. Join our Holiday Giving collaboration and join us in collecting toys for some of the families Child & Family Resources serves.


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HISTORY

2006
Roberta Ginsberg, Director of Pine Brook Jewish Center Nursery School asks Child & Family Resources to collaborate with them in carrying out their programs mission to provide a warm and caring environment that fosters a positive Jewish identity and a love for Judaism, while creating a sense of community for their children, families and staff. Building on the fundamentals of their program, the children and families they serve practice the acts of tzedakah—charity in Hebrew—and mitzovoth—performing good deeds, by conducting a toy drive. The impact of this simple act of one faith community supporting the needs of the broader community is the ultimate demonstration of this principal. CFR staff is inspired by this generous act of kindness and is more than happy to lend a hand. It is an opportunity to support the families we serve with compassion.

2007
Motivated by the impact of its success, Roberta identifies a way to expand the lessons of charity and empathy. She enlists parent volunteers to set up the “Toy Shop”. She sees the value in the concept of self-selecting gifts. She recognizes how this opportunity empowers families and makes the entire experience as typical and authentic as possible. She experiences firsthand the residual effects of parent involvement and how the families of Pine Brook Jewish Center Nursery School are living the principals they are learning. These lessons have extended beyond Pine Brook Jewish Center Nursery School and into CFR. Staff is motivated to enlist additional donations, provide support to the parent volunteers, and add a few personal touches with baked goods and refreshments. CFR is grateful for the opportunity to support the work of Pine Brook Jewish Center.

2008
Now in its third consecutive year, Roberta is even more driven. She is thrilled to see how these simple acts of good deeds and charity have become infectious. The entire congregation participates. It is rewarding to see the children and families of Pine Brook Jewish Center living their mission. CFR is also seeing how far these fundamental principals have grown. Due to the success of previous years, and media coverage, the toy drive is supplemented with additional donations. Subsidy families express their appreciation, “Thank you very much. You made a child smile on a very sad Christmas. You don’t know what you’ve done. Have a very happy holiday. Your wonderful donation will give my daughter a chance of opening a Christmas present this holiday. Thank you and may god bless you and your family.”

Present Day
While community partners change and grow, Child & Family Resources is committed to maintain the Holiday Shop tradition.

“I wish you could experience the joy and overwhelming feeling of appreciation these families exude. We are honored to have a small glimpse into their lives. Watching the parents carefully choose each individual gift, contemplating whether or not their child would like the item, anticipating how happy their child will be when they open it on Christmas morning, these are just some of the conversations overheard during the “shopping” process.”
– Rebekka Zydel, Executive Director

Your support not only provides presents for poor families, it provides an opportunity for parents to provide for their children in a dignified and meaningful way. Your gift is twofold. A toy for a child and an opportunity for their parents to have a less stressful-more joyful holiday.

For information, please contact Casey Seibert at 973-398-1730 X157 or cseibert@cfrmorris.org.