(Courtesy of YIWP) Young children haven’t quite taken over Young Israel of White Plains—yet—but the continuing influx of families with young children has led the shul to respond with new programs especially for them.
For starters, YIWP has expanded its regular Shabbat morning programming for children with Tot Shabbat. The biweekly program for children through pre-K includes sing-along prayers; an interactive siddur created especially for the children by member Adina Shrage; and additional play, dancing and Shabbat songs. More than 20 children participated in the inaugural program, which was chaired by Shrage and YIWP board member Nicole Hebel-Gamzon.
The next Tot Shabbat will take place at YIWP this Shabbat, November 17, at 10:30 a.m. All are welcome.
In addition, YIWP inaugurated its first Mommy & Me program on Sunday, November 4. Children up to age 5 along with their families—dads and siblings included—were treated to a captivating music performance by Bobby Doowop. The children not only sang along but played along too on toy instruments and enjoyed snacks while parents took time to socialize. More than 30 children and their families participated. The program was chaired by Dania Doboz, Taryn Katz and Hebel-Gamzon.
“If we want our children to feel comfortable in shul and participating in the community, we need to start them as early as possible,” said Hebel-Gamzon. “This is the time to show them that the shul is a fun, rewarding place to be, and to build their foundation for Jewish learning, experiences and relationships. We also want to give mommies—and daddies—a chance to get together, catch up and have fun with their kids and other families.”