By Marcy Lahav, JCC Adult,Cultural & Judaic Director
Most of us have recipes handed down to us from our bubbes, out grandmothers. From brisket, kugel and matzah ball soup to babka, honey cake and challah, food is an essential staple of Jewish traditions. Food brings friends and family together to share holidays, celebrations, stories and relationships throughout the world for centuries.
Here at the Katz JCC, we have invited adults 60 years of age and older to our table for over 30 years. Funded by the Older Americans Act and supervised by Senior Citizens United Community Services, Inc., our meal program serves kosher lunches prepared on site to 20,000 older adults annually at a suggested contribution of $2.50 per meal.
Statistically, many older adults, regardless of income level, are not eating properly. Meals are associated with friends and family and eating alone can be a lonely experience and consequently, many older adults are not motivated to prepare nutritious meals for themselves, even if they are capable.
This nationwide meal program is more than just a meal. Coming to the JCC not only affords older adults the opportunity to enjoy healthy meals monitored by a nutritionist, but equally as important, they can eat and socialize with their peers while also participating in varied activities offered by the Adult Department. Ranging from year-long Life Long Learning classes to Yoga, there is something for everyone. Ultimately, these activities enable older adults to continue living active and full lives. Many participants consider the JCC “their second home.”
Unfortunately, budget reductions on all levels from Federal, county and local funding puts this essential program is at risk. The Federal subsidy has remained static for years, while the cost to prepare these meals is on the rise and we therefore operate this program with a deficit we cannot afford to maintain. To help offset this deficit, we have launched a crowdfunding campaign, using the hashtag – #JCCBubbesBrisket. Our goal is to raise $10K, now through Thursday, August 3.
Your generous contribution to our 2017 crowdfunding campaign, #JCCBubbesBrisket will ensure that your parents, grandparents and those of your friends will continue to enjoy the age-old tradition of breaking bread with others – in this case with their “JCC family.”