Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

High Holiday greetings from the Jewish Pavilion

 

September 11, 2020

Marlene Adler

We miss our moms and dads!

This has been an especially challenging year for everyone, but even more so for our seniors in elder-care communities who have not received any physical contact in months.

For staff and volunteers at the Jewish Pavilion, touch is our secret ingredient. While our seniors adore their visits from volunteers, their Shabbat services, and holiday festivities, the thing that binds us together is the warm relationships we form. Hugs deepen that bond. Our staff and volunteers miss that touch as much as our residents.

We have spent the last few months focused on alternative ways to provide "virtual hugs" and connect with our seniors, such as sending email and letters, making phone calls, providing face masks, holiday gift bags, and Zoom Shabbat services.

At the Jewish Pavilion, we are there to make certain that every Jewish senior living in an elder-care facility knows they are not forgotten and will remain connected to our community and our heritage. Together with our volunteers, we bring a friendly face, Shabbat programs, holiday celebrations, musicales and one-on-one visits to Jewish seniors in 60 facilities in the greater Orlando area.

Nancy Ludin

While our volunteers are amazing, it is our staff that coordinate all of the Shabbat and holiday celebrations. Holiday supplies like round raisin challahs, honey cakes and service booklets are purchased by the Pavilion. Ninety-four percent of the budget goes to programs that directly impact our seniors and their family members, many of whom join their elders for our holiday festivities.

The Jewish Pavilion promotes inclusion as loneliness knows no cultural borders, and thousands of seniors of all faiths attend and are welcomed into our programs each year.

Our Senior Help Desk (www.orlandoseniorhelpdesk.org) has assisted thousands of callers navigate their way through the daunting senior maze, alleviating caregiver stress while giving advice on all types of elder issues.

The Jewish Pavilion staff and volunteers wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year!

Marlene Adler, Board chair, and Nancy Ludin, CEO

 

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