• Friendship Circle International

Running through the streets of S. Francisco

We’re celebrating our 10th year of Friendship with a weekly recap of the last ten years of Team Friendship, and today we’re taking it back to 2014. Things got serious in 2014. Not only did we welcome members from 21 states and 5 countries, but we also soared right past the 200-person mark with a stunning 253 Team Friendship participants! Those 253 awesome folks raised $421,237.72 from close to 4,500 unique donors, with brothers Eli and Aaron Black leading the way with a combined $17,798 in donations. Can you tell things were heating up?



In 2014, we became frequent fliers as we joined races in S. Francisco, Los Angeles, and Jerusalem! While those were all one-off events, they became memories we still cherish and helped us reach more people than ever before.

Running through the streets of S. Francisco


By: Allison Leshowitz


When Cedarhurst residents Chaim and Tovah Brill endure the heat and hills of the annual S. Francisco Marathon on July 27, the couple will run in hopes of raising much more than their heart rates.


They will rise above breathtaking views from the Golden Gate Bridge and up the winding slopes of Haight-Ashbury and Fisherman’s Wharf. Most importantly, the Brills will raise money, a hoped-for $5,000, for the Five Towns chapter of the Friendship Circle.


Located at the Jean Fischman Chabad Center in Cedarhurst, the Friendship Circle pairs teen volunteers with children with special needs to create lasting friendships. The program exists in over 100 places including Israel, Australia, and Detroit, where it originated. Batsheva Borenstein, director of the Five Towns chapter, said that along with therapists, special education, and legal accommodations required for children with special needs, “What these children really need are friends.”


Borenstein works with more than 700 volunteers and 150 families to create well-fitted pairs of teens and children to simply hang out in what she calls a “non-clinical way.” In turn, teen volunteers are able to unplug from smartphones and laptops. The Five Towns Friendship Circle has also participated in the Miami and New York City marathons, Borenstein added... Click here to read the rest...

Rabbi Big Wheel completes S.F. half-marathon


By: J. Correspondent


The rabbi of Chabad of the East Bay sometimes jokingly refers to himself as Yehuda “The Big Wheel” Ferris. Well, on July 27, “The Big Wheel” kept on turning.


Running in the half-marathon portion of the S. Francisco Marathon, Ferris, 58, found the fortitude and strength to go the full 13.1 miles, raising more than $5,000 for a Chabad-run charity that serves the special-needs community. It was Ferris’ first time running a race of that distance...Click here to read the rest...


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