Friday, Oct. 26, 20 girls gathered in their best Halloween costumes to celebrate at Chana Leah’s Big and Little Sister event. Chana Leah is a female BBYO chapter found in the areas of Fox Chapel and the North Hills, one of four B’nai B’rith Girls chapters in Keystone Mountain Region BBYO.
BBYO is a Jewish organization that gives teens the chance to become better leaders and develop leadership skills within the region or chapter. The chapters and regions are teen-run with the supervision of adult volunteer advisors. BBYO allows teens to connect with their Jewish identity, meet other Jewish teens in the area, and develop their leadership and personal enthusiasm.
Events are planned in such a way that everyone has a chance to participate, learn about different aspects of Judaism, and develop skills that are useful in daily life. This particular event focused on the importance of sisterhood, while including aspects like social awareness and community service. The girls who attended ranged from older members in their later years of high school to new members who are still in eighth grade. Pairing the older and younger members into big and little sisters enables the older members to help the younger ones find their spark in BBYO and become an inspiration to a new generation of girls.
At this event, the big and little sister pairs were revealed through a series of clues left in the little sisters’ buckets throughout the night. The girls all enjoyed a dinner with fun Halloween foods like ghost cupcakes and dirt sundaes. Once dinner finished, there was a Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF program. Each girl was able to decorate her own collection box, while learning about UNICEF and its mission. Then the girls were given their boxes to use on Halloween. This slowly transitioned into a Shabbat service. The service focused on the support system that is formed through your sisters in Chana Leah and BBYO.
Next was a program on trust. The girls were blindfolded and led in a line on a “spooky” hike. Through this, the girls learned that they could depend on any of the other members.
Soon after, the younger members were given a chance to guess who their big sisters were. After each pairing was revealed, the big and little sisters painted personalized pumpkins together. In this coming year, the big sisters will provide mentorship and support for their little sisters. Each year, new sister pairs are assigned so that the little sisters can step up and become a big sister for the next generation of B’nai B’rith Girls.
For more information about Chana Leah BBG or Keystone Mountain Region BBYO contact Rachel Stein, Chana Leah President, at firstname.lastname@example.org, Rena Ferrara, Chana Leah Membership Vice President, at email@example.com, or Chuck Marcus, Keystone Mountain Region BBYO Regional Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.