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The WOW Factor
by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

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9/29/14

Yesterday, my family returned from a volunteer stint at the 3-day Rosh Hashana retreat of Madraigos (http://www.madraigos.org), where we once again observed their incredible and inspiring work with teens and adults who slipped through the cracks of our educational system.

One of the highlights of the retreat each year is the two-hour group meeting led by Rabbi Aryeh Lightstone that takes place before Ma’ariv and Havdala (the concluding prayers).

This year, Rabbi Lightstone spoke about his recent experience at a five-star hotel. He related how the staff did everything humanly possible to give their guests a “WOW experience,” and challenged us all to make each other feel that comfortable, despite shortcomings that we may have and challenges that we face. (Last week’s email, So Nice to See You, addresses what each of us can do to make sure our Shuls are similarly welcoming to people who perhaps have not attended services in a while.)

Nineteen years ago, I began handpicking and hiring the incredible faculty members of Yeshiva Darchei Noam where I serve as Dean, with an eye to creating a “WOW experience” for our students.

Over the years, I have proudly watched them grow and develop into creative, vibrant educators and extraordinary role models for our students - and a resource for Jewish educators and children.

They are already presenting at Torah Umesorah conventions, regularly mentor educators who are starting their careers, and the creative classroom materials they produced are benefiting Jewish children in Yeshivos worldwide through our Bright Beginnings Series (Visit www.bbchumash.com for information, sample pages, and two videos explaining the educational philosophy and mechanics of the series. You can purchase the books online HERE and they are also available at your local Judaica store or through Torah Umesorah.)

Our Rebbeim and Moros were in their twenties and just starting their families when they joined our yeshiva. Nearly two decades later, with the eldest children of their growing families in High School and Bais Medrash, and some beginning to get married, their family finances are increasingly strained.

I respectfully ask my friends and those who may have gained from my work and theirs to kindly consider contributing some of their charity funds during the Yomim Noraim to help defray the Yom Tov expenses of these incredible people who give so much to Klal Yisroel.

Yeshiva Darchei Noam graciously "shares" me with the broader Jewish community all year long, and before the two major Yomim Tovim (Jewish holidays). I ask you to consider "sharing" some of your hard-earned charity funds with our amazing faculty members.

100 cents of every dollar contributed to this fund will go directly to help our faculty members with their Yom Tov expenses.

I personally thank you for considering this request and may Hashem grant you a year filled with Simcha and Nachas and a year of Shalom for all of Klal Yisroel.

Best wishes for a G'mar Chasima Tova,

Yakov Horowitz

Click here to donate to this special fund using your credit card.

Or send your check to:
Yeshiva Darchei Noam

c/o Rabbi Yakov Horowitz
56 Briarcliff Drive
Monsey, NY 10952

Attention: YDN Rebbeim Fund



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