My Extended Family’s 350 children from single-parent homes took over the entire Jewish Children’s Museum in Crown Heights on the first night of Chanukah, for their Annual Chanukah Party. Each child received Chanukah gelt and a gift and was made to feel the light of Chanukah.
My Extended Family is an organization that was created five years ago by Rabbi and Rebbetzin Yoseph Vigler, who remain an integral part of the organization. It is dedicated to the support and wellbeing of children from frum single-parent homes. Currently, My Extended Family has four branches: Flatbush, Crown Heights, Monsey, and Five Towns/Far Rockaway. Those programs are run by dedicated team members who arrange and organize weekly club nights where the children eat dinner together, work on homework while paired with a Big Brother/Big Sister chosen from local yeshivos, and work on an activity or play sports for the remaining time left before their parents pick them up.
The mission of My Extended Family is to build self-confidence, self-assurance, and overall contentment in the children that can help set them on a positive track for the future and that they feel loved by the community. This is done through weekly socialization groups (club nights), Chol HaMoed Trips, and parties for the children and families to enjoy. Yom Tov assistance and parental workshops are offered to the parents of the children enrolled in My Extended Family because My Extended Family understands that it takes a village to raise a child, but single parents do it all on their own and are truly superheroes.
To find out more about My Extended Family and how you can help or register your child, please visit www.myef.org.
By Michelle Gruber, LMSW
Director of Operations, My Extended Family