On a recent Sunday afternoon, 20 members of Einstein Emerging Leaders (EEL) visited Einstein’s Jack and Pearl Resnick campus to volunteer at BRAIN Kids, a project of the Sheryl and Daniel R. Tishman Cognitive Neurophysiology Laboratory (CNL) headed by Drs. John Foxe and Sophie Molholm. “BRAIN Kids” stands for Brightening Research Awareness in Kids.
The EEL volunteers, which included six members of the group’s board, assisted CNL staff in setting up activities designed to stimulate one or more of the five senses—sight, hearing, taste, touch, and smell—among children participating in the event. The volunteers also received training in how to conduct the experiments and games, which also tested balance and made use of arts and crafts, videos and computers.
“This is the fourth time we’ve hosted BRAIN Kids for children receiving services from CERC, and we were delighted to have EEL join us as a partner,” said Dr. John Foxe, director of research for the Children’s Research and Evaluation Center (CERC). “We’re also grateful for their time, giving up their weekend to assist with this very special project. It was clear to us that both the children and EEL volunteers enjoyed their interactions. And it reminded our staff why we do what we do and how rewarding our work can be.”
Approximately 60 participants, consisting of children and their families, arrived at noon. For two hours, they tried their hands at fun games and took part in experiments led by the EEL volunteers and members of the CNL, including administrators, researchers and Einstein students. A perennial favorite was the live animal show conducted by staff from Rizzo's Reptiles, who brought various creatures, including snakes, a toad, a chinchilla, a turtle and a skink, to help demonstrate the sense of touch.
“Einstein Emerging Leaders seeks to offer its membership a variety of experiences, so that they can build knowledge and share meaningful stories about Einstein with their friends and the wider community,” said Rob Gorrie, the EEL board member who chaired the event. “Volunteering at an event like this is important to us, because it allows our members to gain firsthand exposure to one of Einstein’s wonderful programs. And BRAIN Kids is an excellent example of how Einstein makes a difference in the lives of real people every day.”
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