“On three things the world stands: on Torah, on service, and on acts of loving kindness.” You might recognize these words from a popular song we sing during T’filah, often in the presence of the Torah: Al sh’losha d’varim ha-olam o-meid Al ha-Torah, v’al ha-avodah, v’al g’milut chasadim.
Today, along with camps across the country, we are focusing on those final few words: G’milut chasadim, acts of loving kindness. Along with our fellow members of the American Camp Association, Eisner Camp is proud to be participating in Camp Kindness Day.
Why is it important to be kind at camp? Like other values we teach at Eisner, our hope is that our campers and staff will apply what they learned here to their lives at home. “Camp is a place that you practice and try it on like a new suit, to see that it’s a perfect fit and that you can wear it outside in the world,” said Director Louis Bordman.
So how do we practice g’milut chasadim at camp? There are infinite ways to be kind, of course. But we asked a few of our campers to complete the sentence, “I can be kind at camp by…” Here are 24 of the best answers we received!
At Eisner, we can be kind by…
- Sharing my mo with my Olim buddy.
- Helping my friends clean during nikayon.
- Writing nice notes to my friends when they’re sad.
- Teaching my friends the moves to a dance during Israeli dance.
- Trying not to be wasteful in the chadar during meals.
- Saying “please” and “thank you.”
- Making new campers feel welcome at camp.
- Listening to my counselors.
- Making friendship bracelets for my bunkmates.
- Picking up garbage around camp.
- Playing with someone who’s alone during Breira.
- Writing letters to my friends and siblings at home.
- Saying “good morning” to people I see around camp.
- Holding the door for the person behind me.
- Helping my coaches clean up sports equipment before being asked.
- Saying “thank you” to kitchen staff during meals.
- Including everyone during bunk activities.
- Supporting my friends who are in the play.
- Complimenting my friends and counselors.
- Writing a letter to a bunkmate who’s sad she’s not getting more mail from home.
- Donating my extra trip day money to tzedakah.
- Helping my friend learn the words to a new song during song session.
- Filling something at lunch even though I didn’t kill it.
- Picking some flowers and giving them to my counselors.
Every day is an opportunity to be kind; today is just a reminder and a recommitment to the mission of g’milut chasadim. How will you be kind today, and every day?