FC Purchases Center for Family and Friends

Share This Story:

To our dear Brooklyn community,

Over a decade ago, when we took over as Directors of the Friendship Circle of Brooklyn, we deeply questioned our decision. We always knew that we wanted to become Shluchim of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, but in this capacity? What were we thinking? We had zero experience with the Special Needs community; didn’t truly understand their high and lows; had no background or knowledge about all the different diagnoses and had never really stepped foot into this world.

The skepticism that we were met from various parents echoed our deepest thoughts. What were we thinking? In truth, we understood the parents’ hesitations. Our lack of experience was real. We truly did not know what we were doing.

But there was one thing that we did know: that our journey to this moment and this position was Divine Providence and that we would do everything that we could to make this work. At the least, we would be successful in doing so.

Once we began working, we faced another challenge. The broader community did not understand the need for a vibrant Friendship Circle. Not the schools, not the local philanthropists, not even our closest friends and family. People just did not know how many families were affected and why this community organization was desperately needed.

As we watched the number of families that joined Friendship Circle continue to grow, our belief in what we were doing here, took an even deeper meaning. It was just not a handful of families in the community, not a niche, but multiple families on literally every block in Crown Heights.

We ended up where we were needed. Many of our closest friends are these special families. Our life is their life. The impact that this organization has had on the entire community, the change in people’s approach and the stigma surrounding this special community, has changed in major ways for the better.

For decades Chabad reached out to all segments of society. We always say, Friendship Circle is the last frontier of shlichus. While these special children might go to a Jewish day school, they were not involved in our community; not involved in the vibrant Jewish life that we experience here.

Today, our members have a feeling that they belong to the Jewish community. They are excited to go to shul. There is nothing greater than seeing our participants passionately involved in tangible Judaism. It is spellbinding to witness a FC member holding up our entire minyan so that another member could say shema with them. Or the deep and pure joy that our friends have dancing with a Torah on Simchas Torah or singing Niggunim at a Farbrengen. It is G-dliness in its purest form.

Over a decade later, we could say Friendship Circle has impacted entire families. It has impacted volunteers. Alumni. Donors. Institutions. Us.

A long time before others understood the “ways” of a special child, the Rebbe already did. It is his deep understanding about the Soul of every person, regardless of what they look or act like; his unconditional acceptance, that led us to where we are today. “A child’s progress is contingent on the support that they receive.” It takes an army of kind and selfless humans to provide this kind of support. Our families find this support at the Friendship Circle.

Yesterday, we closed on a property for our Friendship Circle. A home at last, for the hundreds of volunteers, special children and their families. It seems like months ago when we announced that we were in contract, and with Hashem’s help and the Rebbe’s Brochas, this dream has become a reality. BH we have walked through the doors and now we gear up for stage one of construction.

We look forward to the growth and innovation that this new center will bring to our flourishing community.

With deep appreciation for your support,

Rabbi Berel and Chani Majesky

Help get construction startedFCBrooklyn.com/letsclose