Four weeks have passed since we celebrated Passover, and reports are coming in as to how your support, donations and volunteerism generated happiness here and around the world.
Programs, events and outreach supported by the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County made the holiday a highlight in many lives, even as the pandemic continued to keep people physically apart.
800 meals were safely delivered to seniors and Holocaust survivors
Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services volunteers arrived at the Jacobson Family Food Pantry on March 21 to deliver meals to 800 families and Holocaust survivors.
In South Palm Beach County, we put meals on doorsteps and smiles on faces with the safe delivery of more than 800 packages of Passover staples, cleaning supplies and handmade cards. On March 21, 120 volunteers delivered packages to clients of the Jacobson Family Food Pantry and Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services, which included several seniors and Holocaust survivors. For one delivery volunteer, her participation set the tone for her own Passover.
“Your hearts are bursting when you see their faces at the door,” the volunteer said. “It was so uplifting, because before you sat down to your own Seder, you had made sure others were safe and secure. It made the holidays more meaningful. Passover is about going from oppression to freedom, and the seder addresses the mitzvah that calls on us to recognize that all who are hungry should come and eat.”
Leadership at JFS’ Belford Family Volunteer department and the Jacobson Family Food Pantry worked weeks in advance to make the volunteers’ experience seamless. JFS’ teams began identifying the meal recipients and organizing the drive-through operation in January, while the pantry’s contingent coordinated the extensive food assembly and packaging.
Local residents not only contributed their time, but also food items, which were collected through the Deborah and Larry D. Silver Center for Jewish Engagement, a division of the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County, and delivered to the pantry.
Passover celebrations touched every segment of the community
The Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County was a proud supporter of the many Passover celebrations that touched every segment of the community. Your generosity enabled B’nai Torah Congregation to hold its Recovery Seder, a warm, welcoming, alcohol-free Passover seder for the recovery community. This year, 88 people joined seders hosted by B’nai Torah families. One participant said, “I am thankful to be surrounded by Jewish people who are present in the moment and not judging me for my past… I am on the road to recovery.”
JFS, in partnership with the Jewish Recovery Center, delivered more than 100 Passover meals with seder kits to people in early recovery from substance use. While treatment centers are still in lockdown, clients were able to celebrate Passover virtually as a community.
PJ Library® welcomed grandparents and grandchildren to a fun afternoon of Passover baking mandelbread from their own kitchens. Additionally, PJ Library® in South Palm Beach County and Broward County co-hosted The All-Star Musical Passover Seder.
Families enjoyed a fun afternoon of Passover baking mandelbread from their own kitchens, thanks to PJ Library®.
More than 70 families joined in the fun. And Congregation Torah Ohr, a synagogue in Century Village, held “Century Village Connects,” a program that enables seniors to socialize. This year, the program kept about 70 seniors engaged through holiday bag pick-up events. In a “thank you” letter, one of the participants wrote, “it makes me feel wanted to know that someone reaches out to connect with me.”
Congregation Torah Ohr, a synagogue in Century Village, held “Century Village Connects,” that welcomed 70 seniors to participate in Passover.