Collections bins are in place at The Chai Preschool this week for parents and kids to donate Hanukkah gifts to needy children as part of the Fifth Night Project.
Run in collaboration with the PJ Library, Parents Place and seven other Bay Area Preschools, the goal was to collect toys on the fifth night of Hanukkah, Dec. 12, and teach children about the importance of giving.
According to Vivien Braly, Program Coordinator of the PJ Library, the project emphasizes the fifth night of Hanukkah, when children will forego a gift in order to donate one to another child. Parents are encouraged to shop with their child to pick out a meaningful gift for a child of similar age.
“PJ Library works to bring Jewish values to life for children” said Braly. “The Fifth Night project gives kids a tangible way to give back at a time when we want to bring light into the larger community.”
“We are proud to join this initiative,” said Mrs. Esty Marcus, Director of The Chai Preschool. “Teaching children the value of giving is important, and there is no better way to do that than by showing a living example.”
Marcus said the school aims to not only impart academic knowledge, but to instill core moral values. “The kids themselves are giving the gifts,” she says. “It’s an unforgettable life lesson.”
“When I found out about the project, I was very excited,” said Rebecca, a Chai Preschool mother. “My son, Zev, and I have already discussed the gift he wishes to give. Not only is he willing to forgo his gift for the fifth night of Hanukkah, he is actually excited about giving it to someone else. He responded in a far more enthusiastic, charitable manner than I would have expected.”
Collection bins will be in place between Monday, Dec. 10, and Friday, Dec. 14 at the Chai Preschool, 499 Boothbay Ave., Foster City. Suggested gifts are educational toys, games, books and school and art supplies to benefit Parent’s Place, a program of Jewish Family and Children’s Services. Gifts should not be wrapped.