The importance of community days
One of the most important traditions I’m proud to have introduced to the JCC Maccabi Games is Day of Caring & Sharing. I knew we had an opportunity to teach our athletes that no matter how important winning or losing may feel in the heat of the moment, what’s far more meaningful in the long run is what kind of person you are, and how you treat people around you.
I suggested putting competition on hold for a half day so our kids could take time out and give back to the city hosting the Games. My team and our amazing colleagues at JCCs ran with the idea, which became an integral part of the JCC Maccabi experience. Whether they worked to improve neighborhoods or local facilities, visited sick kids at hospitals, or spent time with older adults in nursing homes, our teens connected with the community and with each other in memorable ways.
Through these interactive projects, our athletes embodied the Jewish concept of tikkun olam (repairing the world), learning that when we are fortunate enough to help, we have a responsibility to do so. It was always rewarding to see how many of them ranked this day as a top highlight of their experience at the Games.
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