The sun shone brightly for nine-year-old Bracha Raichik one chilly…
No rain, snow, or sleet can dampen the enthusiasm of MyShliach’s 103 girl finalists who have flown into New York from 88 cities in 12 countries to attend this week’s Chidon Hamitzvos Shabbaton.
Stationed as they are at their shlichus posts without likeminded peers nearby to encourage them, these finalists persevered independently through seven months of intense study, motivating themselves day after day to learn and review the Rambam’s Mishneh Torah as presented in the acclaimed Yahadus curriculum. Having passed three rigorous exams, they have traveled thousands of miles and are ready to celebrate along with fellow contestants in Grades 4-8 from tens of Lubavitch schools in the United States, Canada, and England.
Rivka Rivkin, shlucha to New Orleans, Louisiana, attends a local Jewish day school. The only one in her class to have embarked on the Chidon challenge, she is one of the 175 contestants who turned to MyShliach’s ten weekly online classes—one class per grade in separate boys’ and girls’ tracks—to help her study. Her hard work has paid off. Rivka will be representing MyShliach’s seventh graders on stage (along with Chana Glazman of Riga, Latvia) at the Chidon Game Show on Sunday.
With its finalists hailing from Spain, Sweden, Paraguay, Argentina, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands, Canada, England, Chile, Belgium, Brazil, and 25 of the 50 States, MyShliach has organized sleeping arrangements for them all under one roof. “We want to provide these delegates with the opportunity to experience the camp-style bonding that accompanies late night schmoozing and activities,” explains MyShliach director Rabbi Mendy Shanowitz. “They are ambassadors of Yiddishkeit in their hometowns, living hours—or more—away from the nearest frum community. The fact that they’ve managed to champion such a comprehensive tournament without the positive peer pressure present in regular classroom situations is highly commendable. We’d like them to know how much we salute them for their efforts.” MyShliach has also arranged for each grade’s finalists to enjoy the Shabbos meals as a group.
A project of Tzivos Hashem, the girls’ Chidon Shabbaton will be off to an early start on Thursday morning with a packed schedule of trips and activities that will culminate with a grand game show at Kings Auditorium on Sunday. A similar program for boys will be taking place b’ezras Hashem next week with 64 delegates from MyShliach representing 90 finalists from 67 cities in 10 countries.
MyShliach is a division of Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch, Suite 302. The International Chidon Hamitzvos is a project of Tzivos Hashem.
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