Until recently, every year, when summer vacation approached in giant leaps, we – the siblings of Shimshie, a cute little special child -already knew what kind of “vacation” we could expect. During the summer, he has no regular daily schedule, and it’s hard for us to enjoy our vacation and be mobile. We can’t even think about going out to the nearby park, since it involves unbelievable effort and trouble. Aside from that, it’s almost impossible to get a bit of attention from our mother for the entire summer vacation, because she is busy every minute with our brother.
But for a good few years now, “Ezer Mizion”, under the direction of Chananya Chollak – an organization that saves lives both physically and emotionally – has been organizing a day camp for special children like Shimshie, chock full of activities, trips and all kinds of fun experiences. Every night, our brother would come home satisfied and happy. This year, Ezer Mizion went a step further, and advertised that for boys they would only be organizing a sleep-over camp. This deterred us a bit, since we are very attached to Shimshie and love him very much. Besides, Shimshie himself didn’t even want to hear about sleeping away from the house; he wanted his own warm home and loving family. With a heavy heart, our parents decided to go ahead with it and send him there, along with their heartfelt prayers that he would be happy there, and that the experience would benefit all of us.
How surprised we were to hear – already on the very first day – Shimshy’s excited voice, the moment by moment report of his experiences, the wonderful counselors who accompanied him every step of the way and showered his “dry bones with life-giving dew” – and all this with warmth and love, as if he was the only child in this monumental project!!! The whole thing was done on the highest level – programs, food, luxury accommodations, with professional performers accompanying the camp every day and infusing happiness in the hearts of the children.
And, in your merit, we also got to vacation a bit, and to enjoy some attention from our mother, who is always fully occupied with her concern for our brother and his health. Now, she was able to be available for us and to make up for what we feel we miss all through the year. Thanks to you, Ezer Mizion, we too had a chance to have a change of pace, to leave the house without the usual burden of stress. We too had the opportunity to enjoy the rest and relaxation that we so badly needed.
Therefore, we want to thank all those involved for all that you have done – to Chananya Chollak, who conducts this marvelous symphony, to Zev Schechter, who is as devoted to the children as a father to his own child, to the precious and righteous volunteers, each one should be divinely blessed, to the performers who gave of their time, and to all the other behind-the-scene volunteers whose names we don’t even know, who dedicated themselves to the needs of these children faithfully and devotedly.
We can only bless you all and wish you a wonderful life of health, wealth and tranquility, devoid of any pain and anguish! May Hashem pay you greatly for your deeds!!
With appreciation and admiration,
Shimshy’s sisters and brothers