SPRINGFIELD, NJ - Tuesday morning, pre-school students at Sha'arey Shalom got a first-hand look at what it takes to raise money for causes they are passionate about.
For pre-school director Mindy Rossman, the idea to run the event came as a natural extension of the curriculum.
"Every year, we do a unit on tzedakah, which is the Jewish word for charity," Rossman said. "About two weeks ago, the kids all came in with their collected coins, and we asked them where they wanted to give the money."
As she explained, the students learned about charity first-hand by donating the money to the Springfield Fire Department, Police Department, Mt. Pleasant Animal Shelter and The Seeing Eye.
"Then the kids said they wanted to help kids who were sick," Rossman added. "So we called St. Jude's, they called us back and they run this event every year for different schools and we were really successful."
Rossman said that at final count, the pre-school raised over $1,200 towards the work at St. Jude's, and that she was proud of the kids for biking their hearts out towards the goal. Rossman also said that the event would likely take place next year.
One of the parents in attendance was Springfield resident Amy Lane. Lane's daughter Holly is a student at the school and was one of the tricyclists. For Lane, seeing her daughter and other students participate was meaningful.
"It's such a wonderful lesson for my daughter," Lane said. "It showed her the importance of giving back to other kids, and it was also a great event for her to have fun with her friends."
Lane also added that her daughter was already looking forward to participating again next year.