More than 500 former Camp Simcha campers, counselors and staff, along with their families, celebrated Alumni Day on Sunday, July 29 at Camp Simcha’s Glen Spey, New York campus. Participants enjoyed an array of interactive activities and programming with current campers and staff, as well as the opportunity to catch up with old friends and familiar faces.
On August 1, 550 cyclists will clip in and ride 180 miles over two days as part of Chai Lifeline’s ninth annual Bike4Chai. The bicycling event raises funds for Chai Lifeline, the international children’s health support network which provides emotional, social, and financial support to children with life-threatening or lifelong illnesses and their families. read full story
In today’s busy society, much of our family bonding time takes place on Shabbos. It’s the day that we switch off and unplug, leaving the distractions of everyday life to focus on our loved ones.
At Chai Lifeline, some of our most powerful family moments and memories are created on community-shared Shabbatons. As Lakewood’s population grows and diversifies at unprecedented rates, we adjust our programs and retreats to appeal to as many people as possible. Two of this year’s highlights were the newly-introduced Achim B’Yachad Shabbaton and the annual Chestnut Shabbaton. read full story
As a family-oriented organization, we recognize the importance of forging strong connections with like-minded families. Two of our most valued relationships are with others fighting the same battle against illness in our community: The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. read full story
Rabbi Sruli Fried, MSW
Chai Lifeline Lakewood was established nearly two decades ago by Rabbi Simcha Scholar, a man whose dream was to assist our community’s who families stricken by serious illness, rachmana litzlan, by enveloping them in the warmth and care for which Chai Lifeline is renowned. Rabbi Mordechai Gobioff assembled a small but determined team with an unassuming presence in an equally small and modest town. read full story
In the words of a well-known politician, “It’s going to be HUGE!”
That’s the advance word on this summer at Camp Simcha/Camp Simcha Special, the overnight summer camp designed to meet the medical and social needs of children and teens with a wide variety of serious illnesses. read full story
When Nechama Greenberg* was 13 years old, she began taking care of a young cousin who had recently been diagnosed with leukemia. He lived in her area and Nechama quickly learned all aspects of his medical situation, sometimes sleeping in his room in case of an emergency. It was through him that she first became introduced to Chai Lifeline. She would often shadow him at their events, and constantly met volunteers who would visit while he was in the hospital. Eventually, the summer after seminary, Nechama spent her first of three summers as a Camp Simcha counselor and she became involved through-out the year as well. read full story
There were latkes and sufganiyot, desserts and delightful gifts at every Chai Lifeline Chanukah event this year. But what people came for – and found in abundance – were the distinctive Chai Lifeline friendship, camaraderie and support that will help them cope with the crises and challenges of living with illness or loss in their homes.
“Chanukah is a joyful season that we all look forward to,” explained Rabbi Simcha Scholar, the organization’s international executive vice president. “Unfortunately, there are myriad situations that affect the joy that families expect to experience. Some children will be in the hospital, which means that their siblings will be forced to celebrate without them. Others will be ill, but at home. Some will be saddened by the illness or loss of a sibling or parent. Our mission this time of year is to make sure that no child is forgotten, and every child’s celebration is enhanced.”
The organization goes all out this time of year. Chai Lifeline offices around the globe put their distinctive spin on the holiday. read full story
When I was two years old, I was diagnosed with cancer and Chai Lifeline changed my life! They were always there for me when I needed someone. Camp Simcha changed my life and I made so many friends there. I still speak to them from this day! When I grow up, I want to be an American Sign Language teacher to help kids who are deaf. Thank you Chai Lifeline!
It’s always enchanting to watch the buses pull in to Camp Simcha. Four times a summer, children alight into the waiting arms of counselors, go through a purple arch and emerge into a world where illness recedes and fun awaits. read full story