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WINTER EDUCATIONAL AND HOLIDAY CAMP

SMARDZEWICE 2006/2007

DECEMBER 27— JANUARY 1

 

THE RONALD S. LAUDER

FOUNDATION

SHABATON

 

Another kind of activities were art workshops, joining theory and practice. The traditional folk Jewish cut-outs were discussed; practical workshops included calligraphy and designing and preparing two cut-outs: one with a menorah and the other with a mizrach.

From December 27 to January 1 the “Kolporter” holiday resort for a few days became a centre of Jewish life in Poland. The town by the Sulejow reservoir is also a pleasant place for resting. You can walk and take a rest close to the lake and in the pine forests.

It was a meeting of many Jewish friends, families, teenagers and children, who used the time to study together with our lecturers and rabbis.

There were 90 people, including 26 children and teenagers, for whom we had an interesting and varied educational offer. We were very happy that among the participants there were 23 people (including children) who came with us for the first time. Our staff was also enriched by 4 new members, who decided to devote their time to contributing to the camp work of the Foundation.

The key subject of the camp was “Shalom.” Many aspects of the subject were discussed. Shalom in the world was highlighted, as well as in a Jewish community, in families and inside a person.

Other subjects were also discussed, some of them separately for children and teenagers, and separately for women by Rebetsin Pawlak. Ola Bramson led covering the hair and ways of tying headscarves workshops. There were also lectures for men given by Rabbi Rapoport.

An important educational point, which we always put attention to, is everyday studying of the Talmud. Late in the evening the volunteers gathered together and, guided by a rabbi, studied a Talmudic text.

We also took special care of children and teenagers at the camp. Classes were adapted to the general subject of the camp and to the current parasha “Vayiggash.” Even before the camp started three young people, Ania, Ola and Avram, had written a script of a play entitled “Joseph and his colourful garments.”

During the camp the children prepared the performance, making the scenery and costumes. They were the main ones to take care of the performance. It was highly applauded and praised.

A group of older boys studied the Siddur with Yisroel Szpilman and learned the Jewish funeral rite. A group of older girls learned with Rebetsin Rapoport, Rebetsin Pawlak and Mrs. Sara Malka Szpilman such topics as: the Jewish woman, free will, the soul, the difference between a human and an animal, our matriarchs.

The young campers were very eager to deepen their knowledge of religious life and to take part in educational games.

During the camp a team game took place: Jewish hide and seek, in which both children and teenagers participated.

During the camp we had a shopping corner with PARDES LAUDER books, where it was possible to buy, among others, five books of the Torah and the Magen Dawid bulletin.

During the camp religious life flourished, with the young and the old taking part in it together. Apart from everyday lectures and studying the Torah, it focused on everyday prayers and reading the Torah – for some the only possibility of feeling the atmosphere of religious experiences.

The common Shabbat, for which we invited many extra guests, was a very important point of the camp life. The holiday atmosphere of devotion and joy spreads to everybody.

For people from smaller towns it was the only possibility of experiencing a really traditional Shabbat.

Joy in dance was an essential part of welcoming and closing the Shabbat.

Jewish friends from different places in Poland gathered together, there were many meetings in cafes, common partying at the evening programmes, singing at the table well known and just learned songs, a competition in knowledge of Judaism prepared by the young staff, screening of an Israeli film “Live and Become” and a concert of Rabbi Carlebach’s songs interpreted by Rabbi Goldberg.

Each of the participants was given by the organizers a small souvenir.

We would like to thank above all

Mr. Ambassador Ronald S. Lauder, dr. George Ban, Rabbi Chaskel Besser and the board of the Foundation for their constant and kind support of the programme.

We would also like to thank Rabbi Yitzhak Rapoport and Rebetsin Nurit Rapoport, Rabbi Mordechai Goldberg and Rebetsin Hadassa Pawlak for their teaching and spiritual help.

Organizers and Directors:

Rabbi Maciej Pawlak

Dorota Ciesielska

and Baruch Ciesielski

We are grateful to our guests:

Helise Liberman and Yale Reisner, as well as to Monika Krajewska.

We appreciate the hard work and devotion of our staff: Ola and Pawel Bramson, Sara Malka and Yisroel Szpilman (with her twin girls), Iwona Lewandowska, Grzegorz Piekarski, Aviva Millstone, Barbara Wieczorek, Nitzan Reisner, Jakub Staszewski and Malgorzata Kordowicz. We invite you heartily to the next camp