Sick children take on the streets of New York to spread happiness

by Leah Rosenberg

For children with illnesses that are potentially deadly, you might assume it’s harder to spread happiness. But take a look at the children in Camp Simcha.

Camp Simcha

Camp Simcha is a place that gives ill children an unforgettable summer. When you watch what these children do in this unbelievable camp, you’ll be left completely inspired. The camp allows children to be who they are and not be labeled by their illness. They can feel like every other child once again, and they can feel like they are having a real childhood.

Spread the Smile

One of the special things the camp did was “spreading the smile.” They took the campers around and had them pass out cards allowing others to write a personal reason to smile. The fact that these children can go around and spread happiness to others shows what kind of place Camp Simcha is. For some of these children, control of their happiness might be all they have control over. And they want to share that with the world.

Some of the children wrote intense reasons of smiling such as, “I beat cancer.” And some were encouraging and read, “You can do it!”

But whatever they said, it was written with a smile.

Happiness in Judaism

Happiness is a key value in Judaism. Ethics of the Fathers 1:15 recalls what Shammai, a great scholar, said: “Greet every person cheerfully.” The fact that the Jewish people have these values and ideas built into their religion shows a great deal about Judaism.

Smiling is contagious. It makes others smile.

And it will be impossible not to smile along with this video.

So often, the annoyances of life seem to bog us down. We can’t manage to get out of our own minds. But if these special children can manage to smile, how can we not?


Dr. Risch

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