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Mitzvah Day to be held Dec. 24 at Cedar Village In 1997, two Cincinnati Jewish nursing homes, Glen Manor and the Orthodox Jewish Home, merged and became Cedar Village. With this merger many rich and wonderful traditions were begun. One of them was the annual Christmas Mitzvah Day, formerly known as Switch Day. Switch Day was implemented by the Orthodox Jewish Home Auxiliary. This group of dedicated community volunteers and their families would come in and perform the work of the non-Jewish staff on Christmas Day. The idea was conceived by Frieda Aaron, who had worked at the Orthodox Jewish Home as director of activities, and is currently a resident life coordinator at Cedar Village. Local doctors, nurses, family members, and community volunteers would come in and assist so the non-Jewish staff could enjoy their Christmas holiday at home with their families. From that first Christmas to today, the tradition is still carried on at Cedar Village. Though volunteers are unable to take over for all staff that day, they do provide assistance to the many dedicated employees on Christmas Day. Each year on Cedar Village’s Mitzvah Day, more than 100 community volunteers assist with programs, serve meals, perform light housekeeping, cook, greet, assist in the deli, and provide assistance in many other capacities. One very special project is delivering
Christmas gifts to the non-Jewish residents. Although many volunteers from the community participate, it is the core group of dedicated, hard-working Friends of Cedar Village volunteers who do a yeoman’s job each year. The Friends of Cedar Village auxiliary volunteers have been active participants since the Orthodox Jewish Home days. Mitzvah Day is the chance to make a difference in the lives of the nearly 300 residents who call Cedar Village their home. A group of volunteers from the Rockdale Temple Brotherhood look forward to Mitzvah Day each year. Beginning early in the morning, almost 50 congregates arrive to make a spectacular pancake breakfast for the residents. “It is a huge undertaking and we love every minute of it,” said Gerry Korkin, former president of Rockdale Temple. “Dozens and dozens of homemade pancakes are cooked on the griddle at the same time, and then served hot and fresh with butter and syrup,” said Korkin. “We know the residents at Cedar Village enjoy this every year,” he said, “but not more than we do. Coming back year after year – and seeing the big smiles on their faces – is the reward for this labor of love.” he said.
C r e a t i v e Living Your neighbors will love reading about you
East | Northeast
Dec. 8-9, 2010
Published on Dec 10, 2010