Yesterday was our last day at Kadima Centre, and it was a bitter-sweet experience for everyone. We were really happy to have the opportunity to facilitate one last fun programme for the kids. We started by showing a slide show with pictures of the kids from every activity that we have led over the past month. The kids and staff cheered as they watched their smiling faces come across the screen, and danced to some of their favourite songs.
After the slide show, we played a game of trivia with the kids. All of the trivia questions were about us, the volunteers. Many of the questions were about our lives in Canada, our connection to Eretz Yisrael, and funny things that have happened throughout our stay in Bat Yam. To reward their hilarious efforts, the kids received candy and other Canadian prizes.
When we finished with our activity, the kids and staff at Kadima gave us certificates of appreciation, and thank you cards. We were truly touched by the cards that were made by each of the children. While gratitude from the children was completely unnecessary, I know that their heartfelt notes will be kept when we return to Canada, as a reminder of the incredible connection that has been built here.
As we left the Kadima Centre after many hugs and goodbyes, a few of us mentioned how sad we were that we would not be returning the next day. As we walked back to our apartment however, we decided that this did not have to be the end of our experience in Bat Yam. The consensus was that we all want to keep in touch with the kids at Kadima through emails, letters, and other updates. As well, we all hope to be able to advocate for this amazing community in any way that we can, upon our return to Toronto. Later this week we will all be far away from Bat Yam. I am positive however, that we will remember the kindness of the children, and the warmth of this community for years to come.