Jewish Life A PU B LICATI O N O F T HE JE WI S H F E D E RAT ION & FOU N DAT ION OF N ORT H E AST F LO R I DA
JANUARY 2021 - TEVET/SH'VAT 5781 VOL. 34 NO. 27 | jewishjacksonville.org
For Kiley Efron, yoga and meditation are vital to her practice of self-care. As a yoga instructor, she's passionate about helping other people integrate these practices into their own lives, in a manner that works for them.
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A NIGHT OUT 2.18.21
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The Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida Awards
Joe P. Safer Community Services Award Brent Trager Federation Board Member Immediate Past President of the Jewish Community Alliance Board Member of the Jacksonville Jewish Center
Thank you to our generous event sponsors*: Anonymous Baptist Health Borland Groover Community Hospice & Palliative Care Foundation Dr. Neal and Nina Roth Dr. Mitchell and Diane Rothstein ECR Capital, LLC Edward Jones
The Ilene Sari Selevan Young Leadership Award Erik Rostholder Federation Board Member Member of the Campaign Leadership Team Past rGenerosity Event Chair
Gray Robinson Attorneys At Law Morgan & Morgan The Jaffe Group at Morgan Stanley 369 Financial Setzer Family Wells Fargo The Private Bank Zisser Law Group *As of 12/15/20
The Ilene Sari Selevan Young Leadership Award Rachel Morgenthal Member of the Womenâ€™s Philanthropy Steering Committee Past Girlfriend Connection Chair Member of the Foundation Grants Committee
LETTER FROM OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
When asked to write this column, I was challenged by this month’s theme of self-care. I certainly understand how important this is to everyone, beginning with myself. I also stress to our staff that we must use our vacation time and encourage parents to attend important school related events with their children. However, for an organization dedicated to providing for the needs of Jewish people at home and overseas….for a people charged to make the world a better place to live for everyone, “self-care” might appear to be contradictory. In the 1970’s when the “self-help” or “selfimprovement” movement was in fashion, we learned that one needs to be able to be loved, to accept loving in order to be able to love another. And it is generally taught in the mental health field that care of oneself is necessary, prior to being able to provide care for someone else. When faced with such questions and dilemmas, we can always go to our sources. In the earliest part of Genesis, God rests on the seventh day, taking care of himself; we were given Shabbat to provide for a dedicated time of rest and reflection. The Talmud teaches that, in a time of crisis, one must save oneself and then seek to save others. We experience a modern day example of this when we travel by air. Flight attendants tell us that if the oxygen masks should fall, we should first take care of ourselves and then take care of our children. I would propose that, in many instances, when one takes care of oneself that he/she is also displaying the utmost care for those with whom we share our lives. When we adhere to our regular check-ups to do all we can to ensure our personal well-being, are we not also doing so with a sensitivity to our families? And during these ten months of the pandemic, when we wash our hands and wear masks, we are taking care of ourselves while also being respectful to and caring for those around us. As a Jewish Federation system, we strive to be able to meet the needs of Jewish people at home, Israel and for fellow Jews living in over seventy countries throughout the world. This is a demonstration that we can care for ourselves and for our extended Jewish family. In our community, there are many people giving unselfishly every day fighting on the front lines of this crisis. As these local heroes risk their lives, we can provide caring and support through overtly expressing our appreciation. So much about health care is about personal touch! Even in times such as these, we can provide “touches” and display just how much we care for everyone in the medical profession and to those providing essential services. We rely on them to enable our self-care. We must make sure that we do all we can to take care of them. Happy New Year!
Jewish Federation & Foundation Staff
Alan Margolies Executive Director email@example.com
Lauren Rickoff Director, Campaign & Women’s Philanthropy firstname.lastname@example.org Kellie Smith Director, Foundation email@example.com Faye Hedrick Director, Young Professionals & Families firstname.lastname@example.org
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contents COMMUNITY 5 NIGHT OUT (IN) WITH FEDERATION IN HADERA, ISRAEL WE ARE A LIFELINE TO THE OUTSIDE WORLD 6 BEQUESTIONS WITH KELLIE SMITH 8 JREADY: ISRAEL'S EFFORTS 11 L’DOR V’DOR 20 CHRISTINA LEVINE JOINS RIVER GARDEN TEACH YOUR CHILDREN THAT SELFCARE IS IMPORTANT 22 GAN YELADIM STUDENTS DECORATE BAGELS-R-US 23 IT’S YOUR BUSINESS YOGA DEN OF FLEMING ISLAND
NOSH ON THIS VEGETARIAN CHOPPED LIVER
CARING FOR YOU CAREGIVER STRESS IS REAL SELF-CARE FOR MIND, BODY & SOUL HOW MEN CAN PRACTICE SELF-CARE CHILDREN NEED SELF-CARE TOO
30 31 32 36 38
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LIVE FROM JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA, IT’S THURSDAY NIGHT OUT (IN) WITH FEDERATION By Lauren Rickoff, Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
Like everything else over the past 10 months, our annual A Night Out (In) with Federation has had to adapt to the current situation. This year’s community-wide event will be held virtually, with a premier presentation on Thursday, February 18 at L to R: Joe P. Safer Community Services Award honoree, Brent Trager; The Ilene Sari Selevan Young Leadership 7 p.m. Co-chairs, Lynn Award recipients Rachel Morgenthal and Erik Rostholder Maiman, Joey Mintz and Erik Rostholder have a fun recipients: Rachel Morgenthal corporate participation. Thank watch the event on February program planned that will play and Erik Rostholder. Rachel’s you to the following sponsors 18 (as of 12/13/20): Arlene off the television show Federation involvement for their support (as of and Tony Adelson, Debbie Saturday Night Live. includes serving as a member 12/13/20): 369 Financial, Banks and Garry Kitay, “I’m excited to see our of the Women’s Philanthropy Anonymous, Baptist Health, Rebecca Cooper, Risa and community come together in Steering Committee, past Borland Groover, Community Stuart Herman, Allison and support of a fun program and Girlfriend Connection Chair, Hospice & Palliative Care Ken Jacobs, Debby Kaye, Joan to hear about the way we help and member of the Foundation, Dr. Neal and and Ron Levin, Ben Marsh, Jill others all over the Jewish Foundation Grants Nina Roth, Dr. Mitchell and and Paul Metlin, Daniel Miller, world,” said Maiman. Committee. Erik sits on the Diane Rothstein, ECR Capital, Michael Price, Jeanine and One of the main features of Campaign Leadership Team, LLC, Edward Jones, Gray Chaim Rogozinski, Marjie and the event will be the annual serves on the Federation Robinson Attorneys At Law, Abe Rogozinski, Emily and presentation of Jewish Board, and is a past Morgan & Morgan, Setzer Erik Rostholder, Diane and Federation & Foundation of rGenerosity Event Chair. All Family, The Jaffe Group at Mitchell Rothstein, Sophie Northeast Florida awards. This three recipients are actively Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo Rothstein, Lauren and Michael year’s Joe P. Safer Community engaged throughout the Jewish The Private Bank, and Zisser Setzer, Deborah and Steve Services Award honoree is community. Iris Kraemer, Law Group. Shapiro, Judy and Steve Brent Trager, a member of the Federation President said, As in previous years, the Silverman, and Kimberly and Federation Board, immediate “These deserving recipients success of the event depends Richard Sisisky. past president of the Jewish exemplify the spirit of on the hosts. As co-chair To register for the event, go Community Alliance and a commitment and devotion to Mintz says, “This event is a to events.idonate.com/ board member of the our community. We thank meaningful opportunity to anightin����. To become a Jacksonville Jewish Center. them sincerely for their connect with Jacksonville’s sponsor, contact me at The Ilene Sari Selevan Young efforts.” amazing Jewish community.” email@example.com. Leadership Award will be This year’s event has an The following have signed on awarded to two deserving 5 unprecedented amount of to encourage their friends to
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
IN HADERA, ISRAEL, WE ARE A By Faye Hedrick, Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
Aaron lives in a threefloor walk-up and has difficulty with the stairs. His JDC coordinator explains, “He almost never leaves his home. The professional who visits him each week is all that he has.” This year, through JDC’s CELEB program in Hadera, Israel, the Federation was a lifeline to the outside world for 70 survivors like Aaron. Today, one out of four survivors in Israel is
homebound, and that number will continue to rise over the coming years as this population ages. Homebound survivors struggle with the challenges of their deteriorating health and social isolation, coupled with the long-term effects of having lived through the horrors of the Holocaust. While we cannot erase their trauma, we can develop tailored services to help these survivors improve their physical, emotional, and cognitive well-being, allowing them to live out the rest of their
lives in the best possible manner. In 2020, our Federation provided homebound survivors in this program, in our partnership city, Hadera, with an array of social and therapeutic services designed to enrich their lives and support them in coping with the grief and pain of their traumatic youth. To meet the needs of local survivors, CELEB provides a wide range of services, including in-home professional therapeutic treatments, as well as volunteer visits to relieve survivors’ isolation and provide social stimulation. SURVIVORS IMPROVE PHYSICAL AND COGNITIVE SKILLS WITH THE HELP OF PROFESSIONALS
Join us for our VIRTUAL OPEN HOUSE with a live admissions specialist. Find out how JCDS can help your child grow to their full potential. Choice of times: Wednesday, Jan. 13 12 noon and 7:00 p.m.
Participants receive home visits by professionals who specialize as exercise instructors or cognitive activity instructors. Visits from these professionals improve their physical and cognitive skills and help them gain independence and self-confidence. Individualized work plans are developed to meet each survivor’s needs. Exercise instructors work with survivors to help them gain strength and physical skills. Yoga, Feldenkrais (a type of exercise therapy), Pilates and dance, are among the
activities survivors enjoy in their homes. Activity instructors focus on building survivor’s cognitive skills and fine motor coordination. Specialties include cooking and baking, drawing, and ceramics. Other instructors play cognitive games with survivors. Each game is designed to improve a different cognitive skill. SURVIVORS RELIEVE THEIR LONELINESS THROUGH HOME VISITS FROM VOLUNTEERS
Volunteer visits are crucial in relieving the isolation survivors experience because of being confined to their homes. Over time, volunteers develop close relationships with the survivors they visit. One example was when a volunteer brought along her six-year-old daughter on one of her visits. The survivor’s grandchildren are grown. This child gave the survivor an opportunity to feel like a grandmother again and lifted her spirits. Volunteers also have the opportunity to hear survivors’ stories. One volunteer, after getting to know her survivor, hosted an evening in her home, offering an opportunity for others to hear her story. This evening was part of the nationwide initiative, “Memory in the Living
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LIFELINE TO THE OUTSIDE WORLD Room” (Zikaron Basalon) that takes place around Holocaust Memorial Day. This event gave her community the increasingly rare opportunity of hearing a personal story of the Holocaust firsthand, and the survivor the opportunity to share her story. VOLUNTEERS RECEIVE PROFESSIONAL TRAINING AND SUPPORT
CELEB volunteers benefit from training and support to meet the needs of survivors in the most effective way possible. Shosh Zevitan, the social worker who coordinates the program, provides training and support. Before volunteers begin visiting, Shosh provides them with in-depth oneon-one training. She introduces volunteers to “the world of the survivor.” Shosh also trained volunteers on how to set appropriate boundaries for a healthy and positive relationship between the volunteer and the survivor. Once volunteers begin visits, Shosh continues to provide one-on-one support. She gives each volunteer an opportunity and the space to discuss their experiences and challenges. Volunteers also come together to support one another and build community.
VOLUNTEERS PROVIDE FRIENDSHIP AND ENGAGEMENT
needs and ensure they are no longer alone; they can enjoy physical, social, and cognitive stimulation in peace. Your IMPACT 365 contribution will allow homebound survivors to access the care they deserve. As survivors age, and more survivors
become homebound, your gift will be more important than ever. Please go to jewishjacksonville.org to make your IMPACT $365 pledge today. Other ways your IMPACT 365 contribution makes a difference are illustrated in the graphic below.
Volunteers offer an essential social connection for the survivor outside of their families. For survivors with dementia, simple arts and crafts projects are a good way for volunteers to connect with them and to express their creativity. Others enjoy reading, singing together, and discussing current events. Many Make a Dollar-A-Day commitment to improve the lives of Jews locally, in Israel, and around the world! volunteer and survivor couples DID YOU KNOW $365 CAN PROVIDE... have been together for two to three BOXES OF FOOD FOR years, which has HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS given them an opportunity to COUNSELING SESSIONS develop a strong FOR SOMEONE IN CRISIS and beautiful bond.
IMPA 365C T 13
YOUR IMPACT: 70 SURVIVORS KNOW THEY ARE NOT ALONE
In ten to fifteen years, there will be few, if any, survivors living among us. This is the last window of opportunity to ensure that survivors live their remaining years with dignity and companionship. This year, you can join a nationwide effort in Israel to meet homebound Holocaust survivors’
UTILITIES FOR A FAMILY OF
15 165 WEEKS OF SUMMER CAMP FOR A CHILD IN NEED
HOURS OF TUTORING FOR A CHILD IN NEED BREAKFASTS FOR ELEMENTARY STUDENTS
That's $31 a month over a twelve month period to truly make a difference. Make your $365 Pledge by March 1, to be entered to win a $1,000 supplement toward a Federation-affiliated Israel Mission of your choosing!
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
BEQUESTIONS WITH KELLIE SMITH
By Kellie Smith, Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
This month’s question comes to us from Carol in Nocatee who asks, “How can I best protect my assets and wishes now so that my adult children won’t end up in a legal battle after I’m gone?” Truth be told, the best laid out estate plans may not hold up if a disgruntled relative decides to challenge them. Find out how to make your estate plan bulletproof. No one likes to think about their loved ones fighting over their estate, even the best estate plans may not hold up if a disgruntled relative decides to challenge them. While you might think that you have no control over what happens after you're gone, estate planning lets you dictate what happens with your assets and belongings after you've passed. You want to be sure you create a solid estate plan that anticipates family disputes and problems, because you do
not want a jealous or petty relative disrupting your carefully laid plans. One of the best ways to make sure that your wishes are carried out is giving property away during one's lifetime, in a way that avoids claims of undue pressure, suggests one estate planning attorney. If there are specific, special things you want to give to certain people, go ahead and give them to them now. People might be upset with you, but they’re your things and what you do with them is up to you. It's also rewarding to see people receive the things you want them to have, rather than waiting until you're gone for them to receive it. Family members who feel blindsided, hurt, and rejected when they find out what's in your will (or who is not in your will) are more likely to channel those negative emotions into trying to challenge the will. The best thing to do is to try to engage them in a conversation now about your wishes and your reasons for structuring your estate as you did. Talking about it keeps it from being a surprise and gives everyone time to work through their expectations and understand your reasoning. In addition to talking to
your heirs, make sure your nominated executor knows where to find your documents. Your will can't be probated and your trust can't be administered if no one can find them. This step is overlooked by many people. If your executor knows where your will is, this prevents it from mysteriously "disappearing" if an unhappy relative finds it first. It's also possible to place the will with the probate court for safekeeping in some states. That way, it can't disappear or be destroyed. If you're concerned that family members might be upset and try to challenge your plans, consider inserting a clause in the will that disinherits anyone who contests the will. This can be an important measure that will make anyone in your family think twice about trying to undo your carefully laid plans. It also shows them that you predicted they might try this and lets them know you've planned against it. To completely avoid probate, and all the messy opportunities for challenges that can happen, transferring assets prior to death into a revocable trust that will, at death, become irrevocable and manage and distribute property outside of probate.
Using a living trust like this allows you to keep and use your assets during your life but pass them to the people you select after your death. It doesn't go through probate, and the terms remain private. Careful planning and preparation now will ensure that your wishes are carried out after you're gone. If you have chosen to leave a planned gift in your will or have made a charity the beneficiary of an asset, you may want to speak to the charity or have something in writing to accompany the gift you have left. Caring for your community after you've passed is a great way for you to ensure the organizations you supported in life continue to do the great work you were committed to during your lifetime. As always, we encourage you to speak to an attorney that specializes in estate planning, wills and trusts. Please call our office if you’d like for us to connect you to one of our trusted professional advisors. This is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, tax or financial advice. When considering gift planning strategies, you should always consult with your own legal and tax advisors.
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JBS NOW ON XFINITY X1 CHANNEL 1684 By Rabbi Mark S. Golub, JBS Jewish Broadcasting Service Florida
JBS Jewish Broadcasting Service, America’s #1 24/7 Jewish cultural network, announced that JBS is now on Xfinity X1 CH 1684. JBS will also be available on Xfinity Stream’s web and mobile apps for out-ofhome viewing starting on December 9. Through this expansion, JBS is now available to more than 70 million homes. The addition of JBS will give Xfinity X1 customers access to daily news from Israel, leading Jewish figures,
issues and events of Jewish importance, call-in programs, Jewish studies, 92nd Street Y, Live Friday and holiday services for the home-bound, children’s programs, films, music, books and entertainment. JBS is for members of the Jewish community and anyone with a passion for learning and a desire to gain a greater understanding of Jewish tradition, Jewish life, and the land of Israel. JBS presents daily news and analysis from and about Israel; extensive event coverage of major Jewish conferences, addresses and
lectures; an array of Jewish Studies programs including series where viewers can learn to read Hebrew or study Talmud; and twice-daily programs for Jewish children and grandchildren. “All of us at JBS are thrilled to be joining the Comcast Xfinity family,” added JBS President Mark S. Golub. “Comcast is not only one of the premiere television providers with a long and respected history of serving the needs of all the communities it covers, it believes in connecting
diverse audiences to the content and the moments that matter most to them.” Please visit www.jbstv.org for more information on how to watch JBS and follow JBS on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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EXPANDING OUR REACH By Shelby Weiss, Jewish Family & Community Services
Across the city, need and food insecurity have increased drastically since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Non-profit organizations were hit hard with increased demand - Jewish Family & Community Services alone saw a 50% rise in food pantry clients since March. However, the Jacksonville community did not allow the hardships of 2020 to defeat our sense of hope. JFCS’s Max Block Food Pantry opened two new satellite food pantry locations last year. We also partnered with Door Dash in order to bring meals to families and individuals with mobility challenges and those without transportation.
At one of the satellite food pantries, George Washington Carver Elementary School, 99% of the student population is on free or reduced lunch meal plans and were only eating nutritious meals while at school. Thanks to our partnership and further assistance from the Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida’s Young Professionals & Families (YP&F) division, these children now receive help from our pantry. “JFCS is thrilled that we have this new partnership with George Washington Carver Elementary School. When we learned that close to 99% of their students struggle with food insecurity, we knew that we had to add a Max Block Food Pantry in their school. We appreciate
JFCS Executive Director, Colleen Rodriguez, delivers food to a leader at George Washington Carver Elementary School.
that the Jewish Federation’s YP&F division jumped right in to assist us in creating a space that will meet these children's basic needs, so that they can focus on their academics,” said Colleen Rodriguez, JFCS Executive Director. The need in our
community continues to rise and JFCS’s work is not over. In fact, it is just beginning and we need your help! Make a difference in the New Year by giving back in support of those who still need help. For more information, visit jfcsjax.org/howtohelp/.
NEW RABBI JOINS THE JACKSONVILLE KOLLEL By Rabbi Yosef Chaim Cohen, The Jacksonville Community Kollel
The Jacksonville Kollel is excited to announce a new member joining its team. Rabbi Menashe Uhr, originally from New York, has lived in Jerusalem for the last five years. He completed his Rabbinic training at the Ner Le’elef Institute for Community Leadership and Jewish Education. While living in Israel, he taught at Yeshiva Ohr Sameach and led Israel summer trip programs for
American students from various backgrounds. He is outgoing, personable, and enjoys connecting with people from different places and backgrounds. His passion for teaching Torah, combined with his love for travel, has led him to gain valuable teaching experience in various cities in the U.S. - from Aventura Lakes, FL to Sacramento, CA. Rabbi Uhr recently moved to Jacksonville with his wife, Shayna, and two children. We are privileged to have
Rabbi Uhr joining us as our community development coordinator. We are confident that his talents and experience will enable us to connect and empower more people on their journey in life regardless of affiliation or denomination by sharing the light of Torah and Tradition with the entire Jacksonville community. For more information about the Kollel and its programs, visit www. jacksonvillekollel.com, or email: oﬃce@jacksonvillekollel.com.
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JREADY: STRENGTHENING THE CONNECTION BETWEEN ISRAEL AND JEWISH COMMUNITIES AROUND THE WORLD
By Stav Brener, Israeli Community Shaliach
Israeli Community Shaliach Stav Brener interviewed Ayelet Nahmias Verbin, lawyer and former member of Israel’s Knesset, and president of JReady, a project of The Jewish Agency for Israel.
What is the purpose of JReady? 'JReady' is a digital platform developed as a response to COVID-19 outbreak which enables Jewish professionals to share knowledge and experience accumulated in Israel and worldwide in fields of crisis and emergency preparedness, rehabilitation, trauma and more. Several excellent professionals who were advising the Government of Israel during the first wave of the pandemic approached The Jewish Agency for Israel with the idea. Isaac Herzog, Chairman of The Jewish Agency, and Amira Ahronoviz, Director General and CEO, were quick to adopt it. It was very clear that COVID may well be the first major global crisis with
identical challenges impacting each and every one of our communities, but others, sadly, are likely to follow. Harnessing 90 years of experience in connecting and serving global Jewish communities, The Jewish Agency developed this digital platform which will enable communities around the world to share knowledge, best practices and even unique trainings for emergency and resilience. Even before JReady was formally launched, we already implemented 15 webinars and community consultations, supported some 20 communities with cutting edge Israelideveloped technological applications, and shared best practices from around the globe regarding senior citizens and the re-opening of schools and synagogues. We have also initiated a unique training for community leaders in collaboration with the Department for Crisis Management in Tel Aviv University, including 30 professionals and lay leaders from South Africa and their partner communities of Bet Shemesh and Matte Yehuda. How are you personally connected to this project? I have always felt very strongly connected to our Jewish Diaspora. As a member of Knesset, I visited and met with communities
as much as my schedule allowed. As for JReady, I must say that I was sold on it from the start. I am so proud to have the opportunity to lead such an important initiative. Having served on the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee in the Knesset, I saw just how crucial it is that we Ayelet Nahmias Verbin, president of JReady address the issues of crisis this innovation and was glad management and to find excellent community resilience. professionals in Yael Raz Following the events of the and Eyal Genzel as my pandemic in Israel, the partners in establishing such Home Front clearly became a complex project. the battlefront, and we saw Tell us about some just how important it is for achievements from the last us to spread a safety net of knowledge, sharing expertise months with JReady. Even though we have only and practices from around had the virtual platform up the world. I found The Jewish Agency to be the JREADY cont. on pg. 46 perfect body to spearhead
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JF&F BOARD MEMBER FOCUS: DINA FETNER
By Charlie DuBow, Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
Dina is a successful practicing dentist at Drs. Levin & Fetner, a relative of mine, and a dear friend. I had the pleasure of asking her some questions: Since the pandemic has started, a lot of people have delayed going to the dentist. Can you talk a little bit about the risks of people’s dental health from doing this? Oral health is important for all of us to maintain – just as maintaining our general physical health and mental health to fight whatever comes our way is important. Dentists have been implementing universal precautions for infection control for many years and I am confident that a dental office is a safe environment. Patients have various risks
and comfort levels, and it is important that wherever people go they are comfortable, and we certainly do not want to see small dental concerns turn into bigger problems. Most people know that you are a successful dentist, but what is something that they do not know about you that you would like to share? My Bubby always complained that she could trace 19 straight generations of Rabbis in our family, until my generation. So for her 95th birthday, I became a Rabbi online and presented her with a beautifully framed certificate. She was wildly unimpressed, but then family members asked me to officiate weddings, so I was able to put it to good use after all. What was the last song you listened to? What was the last book you read? What was the last TV show you binged? The last song I listened to was "One of Them Girls" by Lee Brice, I read "The Guest List" by Lucy Foley, and binged, "The Undoing," which was so good! In addition to being a board member, you are also a member of our Society of Healers program. What is a beneﬁt from participating? The Society of Healers
has consistently had programming of interest to me and has also given my husband Howard and me the opportunity to get to know new friends in a smaller group setting. Society of Healers is always informative, and time well spent. Here’s a fun question: Would you rather time travel to a historic part of the past or travel far into the future? And why? That is a great question, Charlie! I enjoy reading historical fiction and I try to imagine myself in that time, so I would have to say, travel to the past. But, how cool would it be to travel
into the future so I could come back to tell everyone that everything will turn out ok! Why is supporting the Federation important to you? I love our Jacksonville Jewish community and the Federation supports the many organizations that make Jewish Jacksonville so uniquely warm and special. It is the best organization to meet the needs of Jews locally, nationally, and internationally, and the connection to and support of Israel is especially important to me and my family.
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Register now at LionConference.org. This conference is for donors who pledge $5,000 or more to the 2021 Annual Campaign.
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LEADER LIN POMERANTZ COMPLETES TERM AS HADASSAH REGION PRESIDENT
By Hadassah Florida Central Region
Lin Pomerantz, having just served as Region President of Hadassah Florida Central (FLC), congratulates Andrea Holper of the Tampa Ameet Chapter in Tampa, Florida. Holper was installed as the new President for the FLC Region on December 6, 2020, taking over the leadership position from Lin Pomerantz of Jacksonville Florida. The installation ceremony took place at the first ever all-virtual All Florida Conference, was presided by Hadassah National President Rhoda Smolow, and was attended by Hadassah members from throughout
the state. Lin was the first person from Jacksonville to hold this position. She served as FLC President for three years and was the Region’s treasurer before that. Lin is a life member of over 45 years and has the distinction of being part of a 5-generational family of life members, from her grandmother through her granddaughters. Here in Jacksonville, Lin’s previous portfolios have included Yamit Group President for two years, Jacksonville Chapter President for four years, and she has been an active participant in many local chapter activities. We congratulate Lin on
her hard work and efforts on behalf of Florida Central Region, for her tireless dedication to Hadassah Jacksonville, and for her continued support of the incredible work of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America. Hadassah, founded in 1912 as a Jewish women’s study circle, began providing emergency care to infants and mothers in pre-state Israel. Today Hadassah operates two world-class medical and research centers in Jerusalem: Hadassah Medical Center, Mount Scopus, Hadassah University Hospital, Ein Kerem in West Jerusalem and is the largest women’s, largest Zionist, and largest volunteer
organization in the US, with close to 300,000 members. For more information about Hadassah membership or activities in the Jacksonville area, contact jacksonvillehadassah@gmail. com.
FREE KOSHER MEALS FOR FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN
By Torah Academy
Torah Academy of Jacksonville, under the leadership of Head of School Rabbi Shalom Horowitz, is excited to bring the Florida Free Kosher Meal Program to Jacksonville. The program is open to all families in Jacksonville. Since the pandemic began, many Jewish communities across the country have been able to access free kosher meals for families with children under the age of 18, regardless of income levels, from federally funded lunch programs. Rabbi Horowitz
worked with Jewish communal leaders in South Florida who have had this program in place for several months in cities such as Boca Raton and North Miami Beach, and arranged to expand the program into Jacksonville. Since the program was launched in Jacksonville on November 24, approximately 100 families from the broader Jacksonville Jewish community have come each week to get free kosher food boxes—servicing close to 300 children each week! The boxes, which are packaged by Nissen’s
Catering in Hollywood, Florida, contain enough kosher food for breakfast and lunch for each child for one week, and include items such as milk, juice, bagels, lox, yogurt, tomatoes, chickpeas, rice cakes, potato knishes and even meatballs. The boxes are delivered to Jacksonville via refrigerated truck, and families remain in their cars at the Torah Academy parking lot for a quick and contactless pick-up. Torah Academy parents Mrs. Tzippy Zaguri and Mr. Avi Smith are volunteer coordinators for the
program, and Torah Academy’s middle school students happily help out by loading the boxes into each car (while following all CDC safety guidelines). “We have received tremendous feedback,” says Mr. Smith. “Parents are very appreciative. Many families are struggling with expenses, and this gives them some relief and some peace of mind.” For more information about this program or to register, please contact Torah Academy at (904) 2687719.
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
SUPER WEEK – TODAY, TOMORROW, TOGETHER
By Faye Hedrick, Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
Last year presented extraordinary challenges, creating major changes to the way business is done. Our Jewish community certainly has not been exempt. Anyone who has participated in anything since the middle of March—from a meeting, cultural arts event, or a loved one’s simcha—can attest. Unfortunately, the community’s beloved Super Sunday phone-a-thon hasn’t been spared from change either. We’ve had to pivot. And while it won’t look like past Super Sundays, the week
will still serve to bring our community together – if not physically, then certainly in spirit and in mission. From Sunday, February 21 until Sunday, February 28, our trusted volunteers will be making calls all week long! Volunteers from across our community will come together, in spirit, to place the calls that will help make a meaningful difference in the lives of so many here at home, in Israel and around the world. Whether it’s a small, socially distanced group meeting in a backyard or an individual calling from their own living room, this Super Week, sponsored by Nancy and Gary Perlman, will aim
to reach as many members of our community as possible. Callers will be asking for 2021 campaign support to ensure funding for the programs and services that make our community one worth celebrating. During a year like this, and with challenges unlike anything anyone could have predicted, the needs are even greater. The demands on our local and overseas partners are significant. We have to look for new, safe ways of coming together to help one another, and fundraising is more important than ever. Every dollar, every donor, and every volunteer will ensure that our Jewish
community remains strong, vital and better prepared for the post-Covid future. If you’d like to volunteer to make calls during Super Week, contact Faye Hedrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or 904.448.5000 extension 1214. The Federation will provide training, a call script and everything to set you up for success! Most important, please answer the call when your phone rings indicating an unknown number. If you’re able to help support the community, please say “YES” when you're asked for a gift to the 2021 Annual Campaign. Thank you for helping us be “Stronger Together”.
W H AT ’ S H A P P E N I N G I N N O R T H E A S T F LO R I DA
ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL HOLIDAY GIFT GIVING PROGRAM By Shelby Weiss, Jewish Family & Community Services (JFCS)
Every year, Jewish Family & Community Services organizes a Holiday Gift Giving Program to help foster children, isolated seniors and Holocaust survivors who find themselves away from their families during the holiday season. In 2020, a year filled with unparalleled challenges, JFCS was not surprised to find that our community stepped up once again and took this program to new heights helping more people than ever before. Because of the generosity of our community, JFCS delivered gifts to over 1,600 children and 150 seniors and Holocaust survivors across Jacksonville and Nassau county. More than 425 individuals and organizations came together to provide gifts to those who may otherwise have gone without. “To everyone who donated, thank you so much! Your generosity made this community a more hopeful and unified place to live, in a year filled with division and stress. Our program continues to grow every year, and we could not have had the impact we did without YOU,” said Donna O’Steen, JFCS Development & Volunteer Specialist. A special thank you to Gayle Bailys, Jenn Newman
and Neu Spaces Nancy Lantinberg, Monique Miller, Ellen Rosner, Shari Shuman and Shari Weiss who were integral in making the 2020 Holiday Gift Giving Program possible. Their time, effort and dedication ensured that those less fortunate know our community cares and is here for them during this holiday season. To all of our Holiday supporters, we thank you, and look forward to many more successful holiday seasons in the future! Pictured above: JFCS Holiday Gift Giving Volunteers from left to right: Drew Peters, Vickie Kennedy, Ellen Rosner, Donna O'Steen, Gayle Bailys Back row: Donna Long, Susan Zyserman and Karen Robertson
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
BIRTH IN THE TIME OF THE CORONAVIRUS By Maia Ishai Talmor of Hadera, Israel
When I imagined the birth of my daughter, I never thought it would happen in the time of the Coronavirus. With excitement I expected to go on tours of the delivery rooms and to attend prenatal classes. I thought my husband, my mother and maybe even a good friend would get excited together with me in the delivery room at the sound of my childâ€™s first, sweet cry. I
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imagined the midwife standing next to me, supporting me and helping me breathe, all with a soothing smile. But then, with the start of the Coronavirus, the whole world turned upside down. Social distance had to be maintained. All the classes went to distance learning, including the prenatal classes. There are no more tours of delivery rooms, and it was even preferable to stay as far away as possible from the hospital for fear of getting
infected. And instead of seeing smiling faces, I saw blue and white masks on all sides. Only one accompanying person was now allowed to enter the delivery room. The midwife and nurses, keeping the required distance as much as possible, came in wearing protective gear, allowing the women giving birth to relax a bit from the masks â€“ but only at the very end of the process.
Every woman who came to the delivery room or maternity ward underwent a coronavirus examination. If by chance a woman tested positive, she was immediately transferred to a special maternity ward in another building. In the end, the experience of giving birth was different as a result of the coronavirus but the result was worth it all.
W H AT ’ S H A P P E N I N G I N N O R T H E A S T F LO R I DA
GRANDMA DURING THE CORONAVIRUS
By Sarah Reiner of Hadera, Israel
Israel is a small country and we, the Israelis, have the privilege that our children and grandchildren live close to us. We live in Hadera, a city of about 100,000 residents. To our great joy, our eldest son moved to live within walking distance of our home and as such, we get to see our first grandson, Hod, several times a week. When the coronavirus broke out in Israel in March, he was eight months old. We went into lockdown and suddenly – no visits, not with family nor friends. But the most difficult thing – it was impossible to meet with the children and see our grandson. A week went by, two weeks went by, and it was very strange and illogical – we live five minutes away, missing them and unable to hug them. And then the idea arose – I would exercise (it was permitted to go out to walk and run) and I tell the children to go out onto the balcony on the fifth floor. Standing in the street, trying
to see Hod and hoping he would understand who is standing downstairs making funny motions with her hands at him. After about two months, I decided that that’s it – I must see this cute toddler who I miss so much. I came to their home wearing a mask and he does not understand what is happening – everyone was wearing a mask. This is Grandma? She definitely didn't look like the grandma he knows. Hod started to go to preschool, and in preschool, the teacher, his mother, and all the other mothers – are all wearing masks. Grandma comes to take him from preschool – and she is also wearing a mask. What is going on here? Several months went by, the second lockdown has passed and the masks are still here. And I think – how will the little children, and especially Hod, learn to know when the people around them are happy, sad, angry, laughing? Can a one-year-old child decipher social situations like this, just by voice, tone of speaking and
glances with their eyes? I bought Hod a book in which an illustrated boy is portrayed – sometimes sad, sometimes happy, sometimes crying. And when Hod comes over to us, I sit with him and together we look at the drawings. I explain to him each drawing and teach him each mood. Are we raising a generation of children for whom facial expressions will be a mystery? We are expecting our second grandchild in a few months. And I hope that this grandchild will be born into a different world – a world without masks, without social distancing, and with many hugs from all the family.
Many thanks to Maia Talmor and Sarah Reiner of Hadera, Israel for sharing their personal experiences dealing with Coronavirus in Israel. Both women are active members of our Partnership�Gether Steering Committee, the planning committee in Israel for our Israel Partnership Program. Maia and Sarah are just two examples of our family in Israel navigating new and diﬃcult situations during this time. Our Israel Partnership Program brings Americans and Israelis together and we have found that connecting with our brothers and sisters in Israel now is more important than ever before. Jacksonville is especially grateful to these two women who have traveled to our Southeast communities and created deep connections with many of us here.
A school for the ENTIRE Jewish Community We invite you to tour our amazing school! 1 year olds through 8th Grade
“It’s ALL about the children. It always has been, it is now, and it always will be” - Laurie DuBow Contact Brooke Zaner at 904-268-4200 to schedule a time to visit
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
COME SAIL AWAY AT JCA’S VIRTUAL FUNDRAISER By JCA
Our community has faced many challenges in 2020! The JCA has worked to pivot in the COVID world so we may continue to serve our community in need. Last year’s A Night in New Orleans fundraiser was our most success non-milestone event to date, led by chairs Nicole and Andy Brown. For many, this was the last time we gathered for an event and we were fortunate to celebrate the JCA’s important work as a community. While there is still much uncertainty as we enter 2021, JCA leadership will reimagine this year’s fundraiser—yet another pivot for the JCA as we move forward with a virtual
program that is relevant, interactive and fun, which we will enjoy from the comfort of our own homes. Set sail for an unforgettable journey to the cruise destination of your choice at the JCA’s cruisethemed virtual fundraiser, chaired by the JCA Executive Committee—Nicole Brown, Michael Miller, Morgan Orender, Rochelle Stoddard, Sam Stromberg and Brent Trager. “As the common meeting ground of the
community, it is essential for the JCA to help bring our community together during this time of distance and separation,” says Lior Spring, JCA Development Director. The virtual fundraiser will take place on Saturday, February 27, 2021. This campaign benefits many JCA programs, including senior activities, preschool, afterschool care and camp tuitions for families in need. Last year, the JCA awarded more than $330,000 in
FAITH & INSPIRATION
By Rabbi Jonathan Lubliner, Jacksonville Jewish Center
Self-care is rooted in the words of the Torah: “Take utmost care and guard yourself scrupulously” (Deuteronomy 4:9). The rabbis understood this as a mitzvah to protect ourselves from harm. It is worthwhile
to note that Hillel’s famous dictum, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself what am I? If not now, when?” focuses on self-care first. Our ability to love, worship, and contribute to the world requires us to preserve our physical and emotional health. The great sage, Maimonides, writes, “One must avoid that which harms the body while doing that which helps one’s body to grow stronger” (Mishneh Torah, Hilkhot De’ot 4:1). More than simply good ideas, refraining from smoking (or
quitting as soon as possible), maintaining a healthy diet, engaging in regular exercise, and getting enough sleep are all facets of the commandment to preserve our health. To claim otherwise subverts the Torah’s teaching and/or science. Clinical studies also demonstrate the negative impact of stress not only on our mental well-being, but physical function as well. In a 24/7 world filled with anxiety and the erosion of boundaries, it is impossible to avoid stress…which is all the more reason to find ways to
scholarships for children, families and senior adults. Due to the economic crisis caused by the pandemic, the JCA will award an additional $100,000 beyond our usual scholarship allocation. Help us meet this growing need! Sponsorships and ticket sales are crucial to the success of this event. Visit jcajax.org/ donate to purchase tickets or become a sponsor. Contact Lior Spring at 730-2100 ext. 318 or email@example.com
cope with it. Unplugging from the world on Shabbat is a powerful way to find tranquility one day in seven. Meditation, getting out in nature, and consciously setting aside quality time to be with family and friends possess an important spiritual dimension, too – Judaism encourages us to maximize gratitude for our many blessings. Helping others can also be a significant kind of self-care because it enhances our own sense of purpose and worth . . . but only if we remember not to neglect ourselves while giving to others!
W H AT ’ S H A P P E N I N G I N N O R T H E A S T F LO R I DA
EXTREME HOME MAKEOVER – JFCS EDITION By Shelby Weiss, Jewish Family & Community Services (JFCS)
Last year, Jewish Family & Community Services was assigned a case involving two young parents and three children. This case, like many others, involved neglect. The mother and one of the children were terminally ill. Due to financial issues, medical care was not provided. When the Department of Children and Families stepped in, the family was homeless, out of money and unable to care for the children, so they removed the children, placing them in foster care where they could get the much-needed services and medical attention they required. Case manager, Sharon Palmer was assigned to the family, and soon things were looking up. The family found a home, they began counseling and were soon
able to have supervised visits with their children. Palmer and the family were on track for the family to be reunified. But, the home had many problems that needed to be addressed before reunification could happen. There were mold and mildew issues, plumbing issues, a kitchen that was falling apart and furniture that needed to be replaced. After a walkthrough of the home, it was determined that it was not livable – especially for a child and parent who were ill. Palmer reached out to the JFCS Development Department and after a single post to social media, over 30 volunteers were lined up to participate in providing the much-needed items to make the house a home for the family.
BEFORE Suzie Becker, a JFCS volunteer, spearheaded the project, securing cabinets, outside pavers, a plumber, volunteers and the Julington Creek Baseball Lightning Team to make improvements during a day long work day. Becker said, “It is a privilege to help JFCS wherever I can. It was especially wonderful that my kids got to participate in this mitzvah together with our JCB Lightning family.” In November 2020, on the
AFTER weekend before Thanksgiving, the Owens family walked into a home they had always dreamed of, including a brand new kitchen, complete with custom-made cabinets, a kitchen table, sink and stove, a new living space furnished with a sectional sofa and rugs, a new bathroom with a vanity, window treatments, bedding, and many other household items. And on the day before Thanksgiving the family was reunited – in their new home! “I was overwhelmed with calls and text messages full of thankfulness, gratitude and tears of joy. They were so grateful that strangers reached into their hearts to help a family they didn't even know,” said Sharon Palmer. A special thank you goes out to JFCS and all the volunteers who spent their time and talents to make a difference in the lives of this family! Without you, this project would not have been possible!
L’DOR V’DOR F A M I LY, E D U C A T I O N A N D S E N I O R L I V I N G
CHRISTINA LEVINE JOINS RIVER GARDEN By Kari Bell, River Garden Senior Services
Christina Levine, a fifteenyear resident of Jacksonville, joins River Garden Foundation as its Chief Development Officer. Credentialed as a Certified Fund-Raising Executive (CFRE), Levine brings proven expertise in fund-raising, membership, event planning and volunteer management to the agency. She will play an important role in cultivating existing and new relationships and resources to support the mission of River Garden Hebrew Home. Levine succeeds Kathy Osterer who recently retired following 22 years with the River Garden Foundation. Levine comes to River Garden from the University of
North Florida where she served as the Director of Major Gifts and also supported OneJax Institute with their fund development initiatives. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Jacksonville Jewish Center and has also served on the River Garden Gala Committee. Levine is enthusiastic to be a part of the legacy River Garden has created. “River Garden is a wonderful community asset and contributing to the success of this award-winning senior care organization is professionally and personally important to me. I look forward to nurturing community bonds and increasing philanthropic giving to support the families who seek high quality, innovative care. I am thrilled to join the
River Garden team,” she says. “Christina is the perfect person to lead the Foundation into the future. She is an accomplished leader in her field and she will play an essential role identifying and securing the resources our agency needs to continue serving our community with excellence. We are delighted that Christina has chosen to join us,” says Martin Goetz, River Garden’s CEO. Christina and her husband, Mark, are the proud parents of two sons. Originally from
the Bahamas, she enjoys volunteering in meaningful ways in the community, particularly mentorship programs. Christina begins work at River Garden Foundation on January 4.
KIDS MEGA CHALLAH BAKE VIRTUALLY!
By D. Hamford, Chabad of St. Johns County
On Sunday, January 24 at 3:00 pm, join the Kids Mega Challah Bake for a day of unity, inspiration, and "loaves" of fun. We’ll roll up our sleeves, and distant but together, we’ll bake Challah. Register and receive a special Challah Baking kit filled with ingredients for your
child/ren, and join on Zoom for a fun event. “It’s an opportunity for Jewish children from all backgrounds and affiliations to come together on zoom and get their hands dirty - for a fun, creative and meaningful experience,” said Mrs. Dini Sharfstein, one of the event organizers. Baking bread has always brought people together, and
challah is extra special because it’s a mitzvah. The Kids Mega Challah Bake is for all ages and is open to every synagogue and affiliation, all Hebrew/Religious schools and organizations. This “Challah Bake” was started by a group of Jewish moms from various backgrounds with one common goal: unity through challah.
The event will be taking place virtually on Zoom. Once you register you will receive a time and date to pick up your kit and the Zoom link for this event. Make sure to reserve a spot for your kids! To RSVP and for more info visit www. JaxKidsBakeChallah.com or call 904.701.4422
F A M I LY, E D U C A T I O N A N D S E N I O R L I V I N G
PHYSICALLY FAR BUT CLOSELY CONNECTED
By Torah Academy
We have been so lucky at Torah Academy to have been open for in-person learning since the school year began, but we do have all the technology in place for students who need to attend virtually. One of the wonderful benefits of having this technology is being able to hire a teacher who specializes in a subject, but who happens to live on the other side of the globe. In our case, Morah Shoshana, an amazing Navi (Prophets) teacher who lives in Israel. Morah Shoshana Zooms in
each day to teach students in grades 3 through 9. Recently, her 3rd-5th grade Navi class was tasked with creating different scenes from Shmuel I (Samuel I). The students came up with such thoughtful and creative ways to represent significant events in the Navi. As each student presented his or her project to the class, Morah Shoshana asked thoughtful questions to ascertain that the student truly understood the context of the event and surrounding circumstances. The students’ comprehensive knowledge of the Navi is impressive
and a testament to their teacher who may be
physically far, but closely connected.
Morah Shoshana watches as a student creates a puppet show of the Israelites battling against the Philistines.
LOOK WHO’S CHANGING THE WORLD
S P O T L I G H T
Emily Rostholder, M.D. Gastroenterologist Borland Groover
“A love of learning, Jewish tradition, and educational excellence”. From generation to generation, DuBow Preschool and Martin J. Gottlieb Day School students discover their purpose in life. Emily Rostholder believes her strong work ethic was learned early at these two schools. Through innovative education and living Jewish tradition, we inspire our students to make this world a better place.
Building mensches for over 75 years Call 268-4200 to tour our preschool or K-8.
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
TEACH YOUR CHILDREN THAT SELF-CARE IS IMPORTANT
By Crystal Whitman, Jewish would recommend this month to help with these Community Alliance
Safely tucked away on 40 acres in Mandarin is a special place that many people call home, including June & Steve Meinstein. After 32 years trekking from Upstate NY to Jacksonville each year, these snowbirds traded in their tire chains for bike pumps. Their 30-year history with River Garden has culminated in an active lifestyle at The Coves for nearly four years.
Visit RiverGarden.org or call (904) 260 .1818
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Happy New Year everybody! I hope the new year has been happy and healthy thus far. As we move into this year, please remember to take time for yourself. Then, help teach your child that self-care is important, and how they can do that themselves. Taking care of ourselves, sounds like a relatively easy concept, right? When we stop to think about how much we take time for ourselves though, you realize, how difficult that actually is. We’re SO busy as adults, taking care of others, taking care of things at work, or things around the house. We often forget to add ourselves to our ‘to-do’ list. We can do this! We can also help build this skill in our children. Help them, by adding skills to the foundations we are building for them now, for their future. We can help them eat right, get enough sleep, and exercise. We can help them build a love of music, reading, and enjoying the outdoors. We can also help them build selfconfidence. A few books that I
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• "What Do You Do with a Problem?" By Kobi Yamada • "The Sneetches" by Dr. Suess • "The Day You Begin" by Jacqueline Woodson • "Raise your Hand" by 11-year-old Alice Paul Tapper • "Tomorrow I’ll be Brave" by Jessica Hische I hope you find some of these books and can enjoy them. I hope the discussions they begin between you and your child, will assist in building their strong foundation. A foundation that includes self-confidence, acceptance, and knowledge of how important self-care is to a person’s well-being.
F A M I LY, E D U C A T I O N A N D S E N I O R L I V I N G
GAN YELADIM STUDENTS DECORATE BAGELS-R-US By JCA Michele Block Gan Yeladim
In 2019, the kindergarten classes of Gan Yeladim started what would soon become a tradition: making decorations for the Mandarin Branch of Bagels-R-Us for Chanukkah. During that first year, students made Chanukkah decorations and were able to visit the store and personally hang the decorations they made. Afterwards, they had the opportunity to sample the various kinds of bagels the store had to offer. While this year, COVID-19 precautions made it impossible for the students to visit the store and hang the decorations themselves,
owner Kajal Patel brought opportunity to collaborate together and celebrate the the Bagels-R-Us experience with Patel and to use the customers and community at to the school itself. The decorations as an large of all denominations! kindergarten classes were opportunity to bring able to make Chanukkah decorations at school and owner Patel picked them up and hung them throughout the store. When picking the decorations up, she surprised students with bagels and cream cheese for them to try at school. The kindergarten classes were grateful for the The previous kindergarten class with Bagels-R-Us owner Kajal Patel at the store in ����.
DELIVERING JOY TO RIVER GARDEN By Jenny Hadzifejzovic, River Garden Senior Services
We'd like to share a special 'thank you' to Dominick Dillon for finding a creative way to deliver joy to River Garden these past months. Dominick is 15-years-old and has been playing piano since age five. In addition to piano, his favorite hobbies include singing with the church choir, martial arts, chess, water skiing and playing video games. He recently earned his
third-degree black belt in Taekwondo. Dominick loves performing for his grandmother and friends at River Garden. He is best known for the smile on his face and the smiles he brings to the people he meets and entertains. Throughout these past months, he's been unable to visit in-person, but that hasn't stopped him from delivering joy to our memory care residents. Thank you!
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
RIVER GARDEN AUXILIARY READY FOR 2021 By Kari Bell, River Garden Senior Services
The River Garden Auxiliary is getting back in the swing for 2021. Beginning in October & November, Evelyn Peck, started managing a ‘pandemic’ version of the River Garden gift shop. She has focused her efforts on selling masks and now has an online catalogue created with the help of Carol D’Onofrio. A link to the catalog can be found on the Auxiliary web page www.rivergarden.org/ auxiliary. Then, in December, she recruited some fellow members from The Coves to offer a safe, in-person
shopping experience. Also in December, The Auxiliary welcomed Michelle Pargman for a Zoom presentation discussing ways to strengthen your connection with yourself, which enables our connection with others and ultimately improves our overall emotional well-being. This event was open to all. Event planning and membership renewal for 2021 are already underway. For information about the Auxiliary, its membership or activities, please contact Auxiliary President Mimi Kaufman at (904) 6262472.
Marti Martin assists buyers at the Hanukkah table.
! ER T GIS E OR T CE N WOMEN'S HA C PHILANTHROPY ST A L CHAMPAGNE BRUNCH SUNDAY, JANUARY 10, 2021 10:00 AM Join us this new year as we explore the world through food with Jewish cookbook author and food writer, Leah Koenig. Co-chairs: Shylie Bannon and Erica Jolles
Visit events.idonate.com/CB2021 to register today!
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BAT MITZVAH KYRA JAFFA Kyra Jaffa, daughter of Karianne and Daniel Jaffa, will be called to the Torah on the occasion of her Bat Mitzvah, Saturday, January 9th at the Jacksonville Jewish Center. Sharing in the simcha will be her sisters, Maiah and Ava, her grandparents Irene and Jimmy Jaffa of Jacksonville, and Karan Anderson of The Villages. Kyra is in 7th Grade at the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School, where she enjoys Art and Social Studies. Kyra is a representative of Knesset and a member of Kadima. She enjoys creating art, dancing, gaming, and spending time at the beach with friends.
BAT MITZVAH HONEY GOLDEN Honey Eliana Golden will be called to the Torah for her Bat Mitzvah on February 13, 2021 at First Congregation Sons of Israel in Saint Augustine, Florida. Honey is a sixth grader at Darnell-Cookman School of the Medical Arts and in the summer attends Camp Ramah Darom. She participates in her Kadima chapter and helps deliver food to Holocaust survivors. Honey is a regular part of leading Erev Shabbat and Shabbat morning services at First Congregation Sons of Israel. She plays piano, is a vocalist and a voracious reader, and enjoys dog training and drawing. Mazel Tov to her parents Sarra and Jeff Golden and Grandmother Marsha Monfred.
LOOK WHO’S CHANGING THE WORLD
S P O T L I G H T
“Teaching you not just to achieve but to achieve for something greater than yourself”
Alan Mizrahi Director of the Homicide Division State Attorney’s Office
From generation to generation, DuBow Preschool and Martin J. Gottlieb Day School students discover their purpose in life. Alan Mizrahi was fortunate to learn this important life lesson at an early age. Through innovative education and living Jewish tradition, we inspire our students to make this world a better place.
Building mensches for over 75 years Call 268-4200 to tour our preschool or K-8.
IT’S YOUR BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT ON JEWISH-OWNED BUSINESSES
YOGA DEN OF FLEMING ISLAND When Andrea Hernandez lived in San Francisco many years ago, she took her first yoga class and didn’t care for it much. However, as she says, “There must have been something I liked about it so I kept going back.” Fast forward to three years ago, Andrea and her husband Chris purchased the Yoga Den franchise in Fleming Island. A professional educator for 25 years, having taught students of all ages, yoga helped Andrea to stay balanced in her life. She grew to love yoga and wanted to share what she learned. So when the opportunity arose to run a yoga business, she jumped at the chance to use her teaching skills to help people connect the mind, body and spirit…and help alleviate their pain and anxiety. Not all yoga studios are created equal. As Andrea puts it, “The philosophy of Yoga Den is that it’s very personal. We operate on the belief that everybody comes to us with their own story. It’s not competitive nor judgmental. It’s about guiding you to what you need at a given time. By taking one of our yoga classes, you’re carving out an hour of space, to turn off
By Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida
your brain, to let go of your stress, your business, your pain, or anything else that’s distracting so you’re able to refocus.” Yoga Den of Fleming Island fosters this nojudgement attitude and encourages students to listen to their bodies. They tell students to ‘let the shape conform to you, not the other way around.’ They offer gentle, meditative to more vigorous, athletic classes for people at all levels and all ages. There are 24 regular classes a week in two signature classes: MindBody (a slow gentle yoga class — in-studio and virtually— that includes stretching and balancing postures) and Sun Power (a heated, high-energy, athletic class with more challenging poses). And because yoga is a practice that one learns over time, both beginners and seasoned students can enjoy classes together. During the pandemic, when they were closed for two months (April and May), many people cancelled their
memberships and it was hard on the business. And now, even though they’ve reopened, it’s been difficult to meet everyone’s needs because of limited size capacity due to Covid safety precautions. However, Andrea has a determination to keep helping people, especially during these challenging times, and remains focused on educating others about the health benefits of yoga. Andrea’s connection to the Jewish community is strong. When she lived in the Bay area, there weren’t many Jewish families where they lived. She realized it would be difficult to raise Jewish children without living in a tight-knit Jewish community.
In 2004, she and her husband, young daughter Lily and baby son Jack, moved to Jacksonville. “I feel fortunate that we moved to Mandarin so our children could attend the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School through 8th grade, I could work at their school as Director of Teaching and Learning, and take advantage of this wonderful Jewish community throughout our lives.” Yoga Den is located just twenty minutes from Mandarin at 3555 Highway US-17 on Fleming Island. To sign up for classes or learn more, go to http://bit.ly/ yogadenﬂemingisland.
NOSH ON THIS SHARING
Photo credit: Colin Clark
VEGETARIAN CHOPPED LIVER WITH SHALLOTS By Leah Koenig, The Little Book of Jewish Appetizers
This delicious first course is offered as a brunch option for this year's Women's Philanthropy Champagne Brunch on January 10, featuring Leah Koenig. Details and registration can be found at https://events.idonate.com/CB����. Chopped chicken liver (gehakte leber in Yiddish) was so iconic and central to the Eastern European Jewish diet that American Jews crafted a way to eat it with dairy as well as meat meals. The meatless version, known as either vegetarian chopped liver or mock chopped liver, rose to prominence in the scores of dairy restaurants that once slung blintzes, cheesecake, and borscht with sour cream on New York City’s Lower East Side.
3 large eggs 3 tablespoons vegetable oil 12 ounces shallots, thinly sliced into rings Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, stemmed and chopped 1 tablespoon packed light or dark brown sugar 1/4 cup chopped walnuts 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained 2 tablespoons mayonnaise 1 tablespoon sweet paprika 1 teaspoon onion powder PREPARATION
1. Place the eggs in a small saucepan, cover with water by 2 inches, and bring to a boil, uncovered, over high heat. Remove from the heat, cover, and let sit for 18 minutes. Drain the eggs and rinse well under cold water to stop
the cooking process. Peel the eggs, cut them into quarters, and set aside. 2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the shallots and a pinch of salt, cover, and cook until softened and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Uncover, add the mushrooms and sugar, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until deeply browned and most of the mushrooms' liquid evaporates, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly. 3. Place the eggs, shallot and mushroom mixture, walnuts, kidney beans, mayonnaise, paprika, onion powder, and a generous amount of salt and pepper in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse until smooth, scraping down the sides of the processor bowl as needed. 4. Transfer to a medium bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight to let the flavors meld. Serve cold or at room temperature. Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3
days. Serves 8-10.
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE
WE ARE ALL COOKS NOW By Jacqueline Witte, Temple Bet Yam
The members of Temple Bet Yam see ourselves as a family and we have missed our in-person Shabbat services where we pray, schmooze, and eat. And eat we do at our Oneg Shabbats. These are so plentiful and delicious that we have become known as Temple Bet Yummy. Though we look forward to the time we can physically gather on Friday night to celebrate Shabbat, the Temple Bet Yam family joined to contribute recipes and reflections to our "Covid-19: We’re All Cooks Now" cookbook.
AUNT ELAINE'S JEWISH APPLE CAKE INGREDIENTS 1 + 1/4 Cup oil 2 Cups sugar 1 Teaspoon salt 1 Teaspoon baking soda 1 Teaspoon baking powder 4 eggs 1 Teaspoon vanilla 3 Cups flour 1/2 Teaspoon cinnamon (I use a little more) 1 Cup chopped nuts (I use pecans) 1 Cup raisins 3 Cup thinly sliced apples (any crisp apple variety) DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. 2. Beat oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla. 3. Add sifted dry ingredients. Beat thoroughly. Add nuts and raisins. Fold in apples. Batter will be stiff. 4. Pour into a greased tube pan. Bake in the oven for 1 1/4 hours. Test to make sure it's done. Cool 30 minutes before removing from pan.
Our Israeli salad is such a crowd pleaser and if we’re lucky enough to have leftovers, we pack some in a mason jar for lunch the next day. It’s so light and refreshing, just what we need on a warm summer day, but this is great at any time of year. And herbs like parsley or mint add extra brightness, so toss a little of this in as well, if your crowd enjoys those flavors. A crisp and flavorful salad is a great way to sneak in a few more veggies into our daily meals, and when food looks and tastes this good, we pretty much want to eat it all the time! INGREDIENTS 2 Large tomatoes, diced 1 Large cucumber, diced (peeled if desired) ½ Medium red onion, diced 2 Bell peppers (any color), diced Juice from 1 lemon (to taste) 1 ½ Tablespoons Italian seasoning 4 Tablespoons olive oil Salt and pepper, to taste DIRECTIONS 1. Toss tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, and bell peppers with Italian seasoning, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. 2. Salad is ready to eat or refrigerate until ready to serve.
NOSH ON THIS
SHARING READER RECIPES
MYSTERY MOCHA CAKE By Renee Weinstein, Jacksonville Hadassah
In preparation for this year’s Hadassah Jacksonville Chai Society event, Renee Weinstein was one of four Hadassah members asked to share a recipe that could be prepared in advance of the Chai Society Broadway After Party (see more information in the “Worth the Schlep” section). This virtual gala event invites participants to have an elegant dessert while, glass of champagne in hand, enjoy Broadway tunes written by Jewish Composers and performed by Joy KatzenGuthrie. For Ann Stone’s Mandel Bread, Ava Axelrod’s East Bake Chocolate Cake, and Leah Ben-Yehuda’s Chocolate Mousse recipe, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. INGREDIENTS ¾ cup sugar 1 cup flour 2 tsp. baking powder 1/8 tsp salt 1 square baking chocolate 2 tbsp. butter ½ cup milk 1 tsp. vanilla
Topping: ½ cup brown sugar ½ cup sugar 4 tbsp. cocoa 1 cup cold double strength coffee (instant can be used)
DIRECTIONS 1. Cake: Mix sugar, flour, baking powder and salt in bowl. Butter a 9-inch pan and pour dry ingredients into pan. 2. Mix melted butter and chocolate together and blend well into dry ingredients in pan. 3. Combine milk and vanilla and add to mixture. 4. Topping: Combine sugars and cocoa; sprinkle over the batter. 5. Pour cold coffee over this. 6. Do NOT stir. 7. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes. 8. Yummy with ice cream or whipped cream! Es gezunterhait!
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caregiver stress is real but manageable
By Kari Bell, River Garden Senior Services
he pandemic has been challenging for all much meaning in being able to help others, there are of us, but especially for caregivers. And, some startling statistics about the health risks associated for purposes of this article, let’s not just with long-term caregiving: consider healthcare professionals as • 80% of caregivers say they feel a great deal of stress ‘caregivers’; let’s also include the unpaid • 50% have clinically significant depression family caregivers who make it possible for elderly • Anxiety is higher in caregivers than non-caregivers parents, spouses or even children to live well. • Caregivers may experience weakened immune There is an underestimated mental, physical and systems, depression and medical problems emotional exhaustion that comes with being a caregiver, If you or someone you know is battling caregiver whether professional or personal. The initial focus stress, please consider adopting these two seems simple – keeping a loved one safe and nourished. recommendations, similar to our suggestions for staff: As this pandemic has developed, caregiving Take a break. mushroomed into a more challenging role, now Sometimes caregivers may not feel like they have the including calculated shopping, strategically managed energy or ability to take a break. But do everything in time for work and school, learning new communication your power to make it happen. It’s important to squeeze techniques like tele-health and ZOOM, and surviving in essentials like exercise and de-stressing activities social isolation. In some cases, caregivers who utilized whenever possible. day or home care services for help or respite Doing something small, simple and rewarding were forced to change their plans. Families once per week can be revitalizing: Some had to step in-and-up with more hours ideas include drawing, gardening or just It’s important to and types of care than ever before. squeeze in essentials going on a long walk. Plus, caregivers In fact, one friend indicated that she and the people they care for both need like exercise and counted nearly 28 hours per week now time away from one another. de-stressing dedicated to caregiving for her If possible, set aside some time each activities whenever grandmother – on top of her regular week to be ‘off’ as a caregiver. possible. 40-hour job. Connect with others. “Even with a relatively flexible schedule Not everyone understands the stress that and 100% remote work, it’s exhausting. When I caregivers bear. It’s important to find people Googled ‘caregiver burnout’, I knew I was already who can listen or give support. Stay in touch with there,” she said. family, ask in your circle of friends, or consider At River Garden, we always strive to deliver excellent checking out an online discussion group. care. And, like many outside caregivers, our staff are This pandemic has isolated people, but don’t let fear often raising families at the same time they are helping and anxiety diminish relationships. As Marty Goetz our elderly. This pandemic has reminded us how always says, “We will get through this together, and we important it is to encourage all of our staff to find a will be okay.” balance between work and home, and maintain a The work one does caring for others is admirable. balance between the needs of others and their own. Just remember, self-care essential. The ability to care for This same type of encouragement is likely needed for others is dependent on caring for oneself first. personal caregivers in the community. While both professional and family caregivers find
for your mind, body & soul hen the topic of “self-care” came up at our editorial meeting, we didn’t have to look far. Our community is full of experts who practice self-care in their professional and personal lives. We’re sharing their thoughts and advice with you to start off your 2021 year in a mindful way.
finding your calm
Everyone has a mind that never stops thinking but through meditation, you CAN begin to take control of your mind instead of letting your mind control YOU. The mind and body are interconnected so when your mind is lost in negative thinking, your body reacts negatively. Meditation calms the body and the mind resulting in feelings of calmness and well-being. A mindfulness meditation practice helps you learn to live in the present, where you can experience life in its fullness. Meditation has been a spiritual practice since ancient times both in Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism to help you connect with the Oneness that infuses all life. Meditation is one of the greatest selfcare modalities as it nourishes the mind, body and spirit. The Institute of Jewish Spirituality offers a course on Jewish Mindfulness Meditation that we can partner with and bring to the Jacksonville community. Contact me at gailsgreenﬁeld@gmail.com if interested.
understanding your body
As a medical massage therapist, I am constantly focusing on how to help people alleviate pain and better understand their bodies as a result. I am always looking into natural and homeopathic pain relievers and have found great results from CBD. CBD stands for cannabidiol, which naturally occurs in hemp plants. Many people associate cannabinoids with marijuana, but CBD and marijuana are not the same. Marijuana contains a cannabinoid called THC, which results in a “high.” CBD is a cannabinoid that is not psychoactive. It only contains trace amounts of THC, so it won’t make you feel high. CBD can be a great supplement for overall health and wellness. It supports a healthy immune system and brain function, and it promotes a healthy mood. It can even improve the appearance of your skin. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a complex cell-signaling system that is believed to be responsible for homeostasis. It’s believed to maintain the body’s biological balance in response to environmental changes. Endocannabinoid receptors can be found nearly everywhere: organs, the brain, immune cells, tissues, glands.
Gail Greenﬁeld is a retired holistic nurse who worked in postpartum and hospice. She is a Reiki Master and has over �� years meditation experience. She currently facilitates two Jewish meditation groups at the Beach and participates in Neshama, the Jewish Mindfulness Meditation Community of Jacksonville.
For more information or to view HempWorx CBD products, visit www.ReneeHaireLMT.com.
being a light
Eight hundred years ago, Maimonides wrote in Hanhagot Habriyot (The Regimen of Healthcare): "If a person cared for himself the way he cares for his horse, he would avoid many serious illnesses. You won’t find a person who gives his horse too much fodder. But he himself eats to excess. He makes sure his animal gets proper exercise to keep it healthy. But when it comes to himself, he neglects exercise even though this is a fundamental principle in health maintenance and in the prevention of most illnesses." The physical benefits of yoga are increased strength, Besides this being simply good advice, our Torah states flexibility, improved cardiovascular health, improved explicitly: “Venishmartem meod lenafshoteichem - Be very respiration, energy and vitality. It helps protect the body careful about your lives,” (Deuteronomy 4:15). The word from injury and in some cases rehabilitate past injuries. It the Bible uses is "nefesh" which carries with it our helps to drain the lymphatic system and boosts immunity. Most importantly, yoga has profound benefits on a person’s emotional and social component as well. As the great ability to manage stress by helping to maintain and regulate Chasidic master of Kotzk, phrased it: Just as there is a Mitzvah to believe in G-d, there is a Mitzvah to believe in the nervous system, lower blood pressure and regulate the adrenal glands. Yoga is a moving meditation, it helps prime yourself!" This does not mean that we must be full of ourselves. To the contrary. It is actually humility that the body for seated meditation and teaches mindfulness promotes a healthy sense of self! As Rabbi Zelig Pliskin techniques. Over time, the practices and benefits learned puts it: Humility frees you from needlessly worrying about on the mat, seat into the practitioner’s life off the mat as how other people view you, and you can focus your well. When I began practicing yoga almost 25 years ago, I was attention on personal growth and helping others. Why would G-d create a Mitzvah that we must take care attracted to the challenging and athletic nature of the of our physical and mental health? Why would He care? practice, but it was the impact the practice had on my Simply put - we have a mission here on earth to make the ability to manage stress and anxieties that resonated most with me. Over the years, yoga was the one tool that helped world a happier and more spiritual place. Being a "light unto the Nations" cannot be taken lightly! The "Boss" has me stay centered while trying to balance being a mother, given us an "expense account" to use in order for us to wife, and business owner. accomplish our tasks while we are here- our "nefesh" My yoga teacher would often say that in order to take care of others you must first take care of yourself. And the body and soul! By keeping them healthy and using them wisely, we make our lives meaningful - and the world a more people who depend upon you, the more important better place. self-care is. For me, yoga, meditation and breath work are vital to my practice of self-care. I'm passionate about helping other people integrate these practices into their own lives in a manner that works for them.
the benefits of yoga
rabbi avi feigenbaum kiley efron
Kiley Efron is a Vinyasa Yoga instructor at Power Yoga San Marco South and Red Root Yoga in San Marco Square. She also oﬀers private instruction for yoga, meditation, and Pranayama Breath Work training. She can be contacted via instagram (kiley_Efron) and Facebook (Kiley Wynne Efron).
Rabbi Avi Feigenbaum is the Director of Education at Etz Chaim synagogue where he creates learning opportunities for Jewish education outside synagogue walls. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, playing sports, and spending time with his family.
taking time for you
We often 'gift' others our time but forget about giving to ourselves. I know, easier said than done but when it comes to self-care this is where we need to do better. Just as you schedule an appointment for meetings (business or otherwise) schedule time with yourself. Seriously, open your phone calendar and add/pencil in 5,10 or 15-minute reflection time. Go ahead, right now, EVERY DAY. Whatever time in the day you often feel most vulnerable would be when I suggest. What do you do in that time you ask? Take a walk, read a book, draw a picture, color a picture, paint, call a friend, targeted stretches, guided meditation, learn a new skill…the list could go on.
Jodi Rogozinski is a ���-hour Registered Yoga Teacher.
reflecting on you
An important aspect of self-care is recognizing when it's needed. We easily focus on others' issues and concerns, but may feel selfish checking in with ourselves. Do a body scan: Do you feel tension, tightness, or pain in your body? If so, label what you feel as anxiety, resentment, anger, sorrow, or whatever it is. Then breathe slowly and deeply into the most affected area. Far from being selfish, self-reflection helps us become a better version of ourselves, more equipped to face the needs of others.
time for time-out
When stress comes up, it becomes that much more important to take care of yourself. Sleep, eat well, and make sure you’re exercising. Look for signs of stress in yourself. Manage your emotions. Give yourself a time-out if you need to from activity or stimulation and interaction. Sometimes self-care has to be about pausing. Learning how to slow down. If we learn to value slowing down, we might have more time to really appreciate the act of things we’re trying to do. Self-care can be as simple as being still at your desk, breathing, shutting your eyes, closing out all the other things you’re thinking about and not responding. Or it could be about actively doing something for yourself. Taking a walk, getting a cup of tea, treating yourself to a cookie, sitting down with your door closed in your office and doing some sit-ups!
beth rush, ph.d.
Dr. Beth Rush is a neuropsychologist with Mayo Clinic-Florida.
Beth Shorsteain is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and works as a psychotherapist. She’s been running ‘Coping with Loss’, a bereavement group, for nearly �� years.
Upon overhearing me on a work call discussing breathing techniques and mindfulness because of this month’s Jewish Life Magazine theme of self-care, my eight year old Milly responded, “Oh mom, I have some great techniques for when children need to slow down and be mindful. Do you want to hear them? We talk about them a lot at school. It’s called breath-work. You can share them with your friends.” Little did I know Milly was equipped with the most remarkable and simple set of strategies to choose from when trying to center herself.
faye hedrick and milly
Faye Hedrick is a former school teacher, Federation’s Young Professionals & Families Director, and mother of two daughters. Milly is one of Faye's daughters and practices breath-work.
what is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a practice where you use the five senses to engage physically and non-judgmentally with the world around you. When you do a task with mindful awareness, you do it with 100% of your energy and attention. Any activity can be done with a sense of mindfulness, even eating dinner with your family. For example, you can teach your children to pay attention to the texture and flavors of food. You can guide them to think about how the food nurtures their body and keeps their body healthy. Practicing mindfulness is empowering for children. It can help them better manage stress and anxiety when it does occur. It helps with self-regulation, promotes positive emotions and self-compassion. The most important thing about mindfulness is being in the here and now - living your life and taking the time to enjoy the world around you. Eventually, and with a bit of practice, children can use any of these techniques all by themselves and may even start reminding you to ‘breathe like a bunny’ when you need a friendly reminder yourself.
take a deep breath
Breath-work helps children build social-emotional and executive-function skills: When kids use techniques to express themselves, they’re better able to stay focused in class and build good friendships. Breathing calms children by slowing them down. Deep breathing exercises can literally slow a racing heart and help children respond to stress in a healthy way (in fact, it works for everyone—adults, too!). You can encourage one of the following techniques and, according to Milly, “The little kids will think the names are fun!”
�. THE FLOWER BREATH: Imagine smelling a flower. Breathe in through your nose, out through your mouth. �. THE BUNNY BREATH: Take three quick sniffs through the nose and one long exhale through the nose. (As he/she starts to get the hang of it, have your little bunny focus on making the exhale slower and slower.) �. THE SNAKE BREATH: Inhale slowly through the nose and breathe out through the mouth with a long, slow hissing sound. �. BLOW OUT THE CANDLE: Imagine a birthday candle. Take in a deep breath through the nose and then exhale through the mouth to blow out the candle. �. SMELL THE ROSE & BLOW OUT THE CANDLE: Combine the Flower Breath (on the inhale) with the Blow Out the Candle Breath (on the exhale), holding up your pointer finger to your nose as “you smell the rose,” and drop your finger to your mouth as you “blow out the candle.”
how men can practice self-care By Lee Mikel, LMHC, Jewish Family & Community Services
Men’s mental health is very important to their families, their careers, and their place in the world. As we talk through the reality of mental health for men, let us be reminded that approaching our own challenges is an act of confidence and strength. Men have mental health struggles, too. Those struggles can present differently from what we are accustomed to in American culture. Depression often presents in the form of constant anger and frustration. This negative attitude can often be aimed at a person closest to us. Anxiety generally presents as avoidance because most men prefer to participate only in those things that they know they will succeed at. Feelings of frustration with life can motivate men to take bold acts to assert themselves… or, conversely, give up. Avoiding our mental health struggles can affect those around us. Our behavior often changes in negative ways and the relationship with our families begin to suffer. The family frequently cannot understand the increasingly negative emotions and frustration. At some point, the family will begin to shut down and start protecting themselves from the angry man. If you feel this way, I would urge you to take a look at a plan of action that I have put together.
Even the most confident family members will genuinely respect a self-aware man in their midst. 3. SET GOALS FOR PROGRESS. Even small steps of progress can make a huge impact. Simple tasks such as: • Making your bed every morning can help you better organize your life by starting the day off with a success. • Share one personal and emotional feeling each day with a loved one – be honest and transparent with your ups and downs. • Redeem your losses. If you have recently lost your job, instead of stressing about it, reimagine your situation in a more positive light: • Your new job is now to find new employment • After searching, take some time and clean the kitchen – small success. • Connect with other men – go fishing, have lunch, discuss life – small successes.
4. USE THE TOOLS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS. If we were to break our leg, we would reach for a crutch. If we burn our skin, we would put on a salve. If we are overworked, we would take a vacation. We need to 1. LIST CHARACTERISTICS OF YOUR LIFE THAT ARE always use tools to help us be successful. STANDING OUT. • Engage a doctor. Take care of your body. Get your Are you sleeping too much? Too much arguing? blood checked for nutritional deficits. A poorly Feeling stressed out all of the time? Writing regulated body is very susceptible down the characteristics will give you uncontrolled stress. talking points and help you create a plan of • Don’t rule out medication. Medication Men thrive by action. Getting them down on paper will can help should it be needed. purpose, begin to reduce your stress level. • Talk to a therapist. Every therapist is accomplishment, different. I support my clients with and goals 2. DESCRIBE SYMPTOMS TO YOUR practical information, by asking FAMILY OR FRIENDS. challenging questions, and making special This helps them realize that you are going notes on client’s progress. I find that men can through a struggle in your life. It shows them that use therapy as a way to take ownership of their you are self-aware, self-reflective, and self-motivated. life and situation. The main value of a therapist for
men is to provide resources to make their own progress happen. 5. NOTE PROGRESS. Everyone needs to know when improvements are made and have been noticed. Regardless of the situation, small improvements make for healthy long-term progress which leads to success. Our family feels safe when we can openly communicate our successes and our struggles. Confident men openly talk about their struggles because it does not bother them. They are big enough to talk about the car door they could not repair, the frustrating coworker who aggravates him, and the annoying child who interrupted the movie, and the disappointment of a dead end job. They are big enough to face it. Their family feels that strength. They are cool, calm, and collected in dealing with it. Good partners are receptive to men disclosing their struggles. The family can do their part by reacting in an appropriate way that is consistent to his individualized needs. The family can give him some room, or invite him to participate in an activity. The family can try to deeply listen and try to understand what is bothering him. Also, the family can work on supporting his sense of purpose and positive influence on the world. Please understand that powerlessness is a powerful trigger of poor mental health for anyone. Sometimes the situation can become intolerable. The family can respectfully set expectations of improvements to make the situation better. In the worst cases, the family can make plans to decrease the negative situation by finding diversions. If it becomes very serious, the family may have to remove themselves for safety reasons. Perhaps, all along the journey, the family can seek their own well-being by talking to a therapist. Do you need to find a way to encourage a man in your life? Or find a way for him to engage in a different direction with his behavior? One creative way is to find a way to make them a hero. Give him a purpose that you
deeply appreciate. After all, no man can be a hero while he is stuck in bed, moping around, and sad about his pitiful place in life. Can you express that you need help with some task that ONLY he can successfully do? Can you express that you look forward to some quality time with him after a hard week? Men thrive by purpose, accomplishment, and goals. Our culture is accustomed to the figurative and romantic examples of accomplishment: Getting the gold. Rescuing the kitten in the tree. Fighting the dragon. Repelling the invaders. These represent a purpose in their life that draw out the best in a man and gives him a reason to make his mental health a priority. These experiences give him a purpose to pull himself up and focus on his goal. Men have special purpose in this world. Men need to be in their prime capacity to turn our hurdles into personal acts of heroism. In doing so, we often find our purpose and impact those around us. Let us be strong enough to face our challenges!
lee mikel, lmhc
Lee Mikel is a licensed mental health counselor at Jewish Family & Community Services’ counseling division, Dupont Counseling Group. Lee is available for private counseling and members of the Jewish community are able to receive three free counseling sessions through a funding partnership with the Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida. The Agency also accepts private insurance, Medicaid, and oﬀers sliding scale fees based on the client’s income. Contact Dupont Counseling Group at ���-���-����.
children nee d self-care too
By Tina Silva, Martin J. Gottlieb Day School, DuBow Preschool
he pandemic has changed our lives in so job to help them find what they need, and how to cope many ways, including spending more with this pandemic. As educators and parents we need time at home. Our social circles have to help our children become more self-aware of who been reduced to repeating conversations they are physically, as well as emotionally. We need to with others in our household, or really tune in to their feelings; make yourself aware of sometimes we talk to our pets more than we do actual how your child is behaving. Teach them to become humans! Many of us still go to work and our children resilient by being open and talking about how they feel. go to school. We wear masks, sit behind plexiglass Remember, some children will take longer to express shields, and maintain a distance of 6 feet or more. All their feelings, and this is okay. Behind every behavior is of this is all done to protect not only ourselves, but a feeling! Sometimes a simple activity can help open others. the discussion; maybe drawing together, having one on Schools are meant to be a place of nurturing and one time, or reading a book together. Calming the child love. Hugs, high fives, laughter, and quiet conversations and letting them know you are there can go a long way. are usually part of a normal school day. These small, Self expression can be displayed in many forms; find intimate, human interactions are what make students what works for you and your family. and teachers feel connected. It can be a challenge for The best way to teach self-care starts with you. Please children to adjust without these special moments. Most take care of yourself during this unpredictable time, and students know and understand why they cannot hug your child will naturally follow your lead. As parents, their teachers and friends at school. This leaves me spouses, caregivers, and/or employees(ers) there is wondering how our children will develop emotionally always a demand for your time and attention. We set as they become older; what will the psychological impossible standards for ourselves: to excel at work, impact be? We know that they receive love and care for your parents, volunteer or coach - all of these affection from home, but school is in many ways an are valid and worthy undertakings. The only issue is extension of home, where children are taught in a safe that these actions do not include caring for yourself. nurturing environment. A few years ago, I decided to see a therapist because I It can be difficult when interaction and affection was trying to do and be something and someone for outside of your “pod” is now frowned upon and everyone but me. My therapist told me to always seen as a negative. As adults, we have the remember, “I have to take care of myself so capacity to understand the necessity of that I can be in a better place to take care Children will take these actions, but children, especially of others." I don’t always remember to longer to express younger children, may not fully grasp stop and be kind to myself, but I try these major changes to their daily their feelings. Behind more now than I used to. Try to routine. As a community we need to be remember that no matter what you do, every behavior is a more vigilant when it comes to our you must always remember that how you feeling! children. They do not know what selftreat yourself makes a difference to the care is, but they recognize what they do ones you love. not have and what they are missing. It is our
WORTH THE SCHLEP N O R T H E A S T F LO R I DA’ S E V E N T C A L E N DA R
Shoobee Doobee Shabbat (Virtual) January 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 10:00 – 11:00 am Jacksonville Jewish Center with Hazzan Holzer Kabbalat Shabbat Under Ground (Virtual) January 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 6:00-7:00 pm Jacksonville Jewish Center Attend any morning or evening service to observe a loved ones Yarzheit and participate in a virtual minyan to say Kaddish. The Temple Zoom Erev Shabbat (Virtual) January 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 7:00-8:00 pm Congregation Ahavath Chesed Phone (904) 733-7078 for Zoom link. Healing Service Hosted by Hazzan Holzer (Virtual) January 5, 12, 19, 26 6:00-7:00 pm Jacksonville Jewish Center Women’s Philanthropy Champagne Brunch (Virtual) January 10 10:00 am Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida Join us this new year as we explore the world through food with Jewish cookbook author and food writer, Leah Koenig. Register now at events. idonate.com/CB2021
PJ Library Mom's Night In (Virtual) January 17 8:00 pm For more details, email Melissa Williams, PJ Library Coordinator at Jewish Family & Community Services at mgwilliams@ jfcsjax.org.
Hadassah Chai Society Broadway After Party (Virtual) January 19 7:30 pm This gala celebration will honor Hadassah Jacksonville Chai Society members and feature a musical tribute to the Legendary Jewish Composers of Broadway performed by Joy KatzenGuthrie. This event is open to everyone and will be a lovely evening of music, elegant desserts and champagne toasts. RSVP jacksonvillehadassah@ gmail.com Virtual Sacred Cinema “Crimes and Misdemeanors” January 23 7:00-8:30 pm Congregation Ahavath Chesed Watch the movie “Crimes and Misdemeanors” beforehand with a guide of what to look for from a Jewish perspective. RSVP@Thetemplejax.org to receive Zoom link.
International Holocaust Remembrance Day: JFCS's Frisch Family Holocaust Memorial Gallery Live Virtual Tours January 27 10:00 am and 7:00 pm International Holocaust Remembrance Day: JFCS will host virtual tours of “Spots of Light: To Be a Woman in the Holocaust.” Tours by guest curator Hope McMath. Talks by children of Holocaust survivors. Frisch Family Holocaust Memorial Gallery supported by The Dr. Larry & Kathy Kanter Art Fund and Florida Blue. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
What Does Israel mean to the Children of Holocaust Survivors? (Virtual) January 27 5:30 pm Join Stav Brener, Israeli Community Shaliach and Stacey Goldring, Founder of Searching for Identity as we hear from the “Second Gen,” Naomi Chase and Louis Post. Learn about their parents’ journey to Eretz Yisrael. Discover the significance of Israel in their lives. RSVP to jaxshlichut@ jewishjacksonville.org
Mah Jongg Tournament (Virtual) January 31 Noon Temple Bet Yam is sponsoring a virtual mah jongg game for the entire community. The tournament will be played online at Realmahjongg.com. Entry fee is $20. Register by Jan. 22. For questions and to sign-up, call Carol Levy at (954) 895-7332. What You Do Matters: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum 2021 Southeast Virtual Event February 11 7:00 pm Join the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and supporters across the Southeast for a meaningful virtual event. This experience is accessed with a donation of $118 per household and registration is required. For questions or sponsorship opportunities, please contact the Southeast Regional Office at 561.995.6773 or email@example.com. Register online: ushmm.org/ events/2021-SE-Event A NIGHT OUT IN WITH FEDERATION (Virtual) February 18 7:00 pm Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida A community-wide event to raise funds to support the 2021 Annual Campaign. Register at events.idonate. com/anightin2021.
SEE AND BE SCENE THROUGH THE LENS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA Latkes and Vodkas 2020 at the Jacksonville Jewish Center was a lovely celebration of Hanukkah. Together we lit the Hannukiyah, played casino games, enjoyed latkes and other treats provided by Margo's Catering. (photos by Larry Tallis)
SEE AND BE SCENE
THROUGH THE LENS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA
The Jacksonville Jewish Center lit Hanukkah candles around town. On Sunday, December 13, Rabbi Lubliner and members of the community were at Jax Beach.
have a happy and healthy
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MOBILE (904) 652-5978 OFFICE (904) 469-7653 ERICA@SELLSJAX.COM SELLSJAX.COM
CREATING A SHIDDACH BETWEEN HOME BUYERS AND SELLERS
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE The Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida held its annual Major Gifts Event which highlighted the reach of the Federation and how we're all connected. The highlight of the evening was playing the game "Who Knows One?" Mazel Tov to the contestants, Dina Fetner, Ken Jacobs, Jeanine Rogozinski, Erik Rostholder and Debra Setzer, for entertaining the crowd as they searched for the "Chosen One." "During these unusual times of Zoom and socially distanced meetings, I am trying to remind myself daily of all that we have to be grateful for. At the event, I was reminded of what an amazing Jewish community we have here in Jacksonville and nationwide. The beautiful hand-delivered box from Federation containing a bountiful amount of goodies provided by Bread & Board was both amazing and delicious! The fact that it was provided by an anonymous donor is just one example of the generosity that happens in this community every day. Also, watching the game “Who Knows One?” where participants searched nationwide for the "Chosen One” showed just how connected we all are to one another in the Jewish community at-large. A new take on six-degrees of separation! But it also was an exercise showing how we are stronger together which is the theme for our Federation this whole year." --Meryl Rittenberg
TOP: Diane Rothstein enjoying goodies from a special box supplied by the Bread & Board and an anonymous donor. LEFT: Meryl Rittenberg celebrated Hanukkah on the Zoom.
OPPOSITE PAGE, TOP: Jennifer Plotkin, Annual Campaign Chair, and Haley Trager, Major Gifts Chair, spoke of the importance of Federation connections. OPPOSITE PAGE, BOTTOM LEFT: Lauren and Michael Setzer cheered on Michael's mom throughout the game.
OPPOSITE PAGE, BOTTOM RIGHT: Contestant Ken Jacobs came ready to play.
SEE AND BE SCENE
THROUGH THE LENS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA
NORTHEAST FLORIDA JEWISH LIFE Torah Academy’s 6th grade math class recently won the school’s Khan Academy LearnStorm Challenge, beating out the 5th, 7th and 8th grade classes! This win was due to hard work and some especially impressive team work. Congratulations 6th graders!
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SEE AND BE SCENE
THROUGH THE LENS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA PJ Library Hosts Outdoor Book Walk
During this time of physical distancing, it has never been more important to stay socially engaged with our community. PJ Library continues to provide meaningful connections for families through safe and creative programming. Most recently, children and families delighted in an outdoor Book Walk featuring the story "One Good Deed" by Terri Fields. Curious about what a book walk looks like? Imagine yourself on a nature trail walking through the pages of a story and experiencing a book in a new way. The pages of our story were separated into ten stations, each with a fun and meaningful activity that correlated with the storyline. At each station, families took time to read and engage with each activity. The children could not help but to feel like they were actually a part of the story. Great fun was had by all who attended! Keep your eyes peeled for future book walk locations and dates.
JREADY cont. from pg. 11
Right now, JReady is cruising down the runway, but gaining momentum in readiness for takeoff. We have set up boards and advisory committees including significant leaders and professionals with necessary gravitas. We are currently drawing a comprehensive work plan for the next 3 years of activity. We have started mapping communities, with those most in need as our highest priority We are recruiting more and more experts from around the
world and building collaborations with various organizations who can add to our toolbox of crisis support. We have already identified specific challenges that require our attention and we are delighted that communities are already perceiving JReady as their go-to for emergency response. Looking down the road, I see JReady as an immense challenge, but more so a unique and timely opportunity to ensure the long-term resiliency of our global communities.
How can our community beneﬁt from JReady? JReady is taking a twopronged approach: simultaneously identifying the strengths and needs of each community. We are encouraging them to assess their own preparedness for emergency situations. I strongly recommend community members – leaders as well as professionals – browse the platform, set up a user account, and become acquainted with all it has to offer. I believe that the tools that we already have to offer will make a huge difference in communities, and have big plans to enhance and expand these offerings. At the same time, we welcome your community to contribute knowledge
The Jewish Federation & Foundation of Northeast Florida supports our partner agencies to make a difference throughout our community. Your gift today to the 2021 Annual Campaign will help make that happen. Visit jewishjacksonville.org today!
and best practices that may provide the solutions that other Jewish communities are looking for. Being at the epicenter of this network of community resilience is both exciting and truly humbling. Any personal words you’d like to share with our community? I want your community to know that you are always in my mind and in my heart. Whenever a tragedy occurs in any of our global Jewish communities, I always seek out ways that I can help. I can provide support. JReady provides the perfect response. I want every community to know with certainty that we are all here for one another, or as we say in Hebrew, arevim ze l’ze.
COMMUNITY RESOURCES HELP ACROSS NORTHEAST FLORIDA Admissions 904-886-8420 Adult Day 904-288-7858 Home Health Care 904-288-7851 Outpatient Rehab 904-886-8454 The Coves 904-292-2683 Volunteers 904-886-8429 Foundation 904-886-8430 MAIN 904-260-1818
River Garden is the go-to resource for high-quality adult care in Jacksonville. Honoring our Jewish traditions, the dedicated staff, leadership and volunteers are all committed to a best-in-class experience. Whether it is for you, your spouse, parents or friend, be sure to request River Garden.
Love to shop? We need grocery shoppers. Sign up today to volunteer grocery shop for our community's Coves residents at River Garden.
Easy sign up: signupgenius.com/go/8050A4FA9AA2BABF49-coves Where: Publix, 11250 Old St Augustine Rd. When: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 10:30 am If you have any questions, please email Faye Hedrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
T ORAH A CADEMY OF JACKSONVILLE
PJ Library, the award-winning free program for books and music is open to all families with Jewish children in Jacksonville. If your children are between the ages of six months and eight years, they are eligible. Please sign up now by going to pjlibrary.org/communities/ jacksonville or calling Melissa Willams at 904-394-5724.
JFCS, in partnership with Margos Catering, is pleased to bring you our meal program Meals4You. Meals are delicious, nutritious, convenient and delivered right to your door. Jewish dietary laws are observed. Call Nicole Andrews at 904-394-5810 for more information.
Every Tuesday from 3:15 to 4:15, Torah Academy hosts a free kosher food program sponsored by the USDA for any children under 18. The program helps farmers keep their businesses going, and provides food for all children during these trying times. Register while waiting in the pick up line.
Become a Jewish Healing Network volunteer at JFCS and help us fulfill the mitzvah of Bikkur Cholim. We need volunteers to make weekly visits or phone calls to a senior or deliver food to those who cannot get out. For more information, call Hilary Rotenberg at 904-394-5722 Are you a friend of Bill? If so, email Jodi Seitlin at email@example.com.
Through a partnership with GO GO Grandparent and a grant from the Community Foundation for Northeast Florida, JFCS is now offering immediate rides through our Call2Go program. Riders will no longer have to call to book transportation. They will now be able to use an "on demand" service available at their fingertips! GO GO Grandparent will have booking agents available 24/7. When a client calls, the agent will book, monitor and stay available to the client until the ride is complete. Riders MUST preregister with Nicole Brown at (904) 394-5724 and have a cell phone (texting is not necessary) to use this service. Call2Go is available to those in need of transportation to attend synagogue, medical appointments and other important outings. A sliding fee scale is available. Don't be deceived by the name...you don't have to be a grandparent to use the program. Call Nicole today! 47
Taste it. Certain Jewish foods have magical powers. For some, it’s a piece of egg challah. For others, some flaky rugelach, a sweet noodle kugel, or a savory brisket. Magical foods might taste good, but they get their power from the memories they bring us — memories of home, community, heritage, and love. When you leave a Jewish legacy, you’re setting a table for the future, ensuring that what you cherish about Jewish life continues to sustain, nurture, and delight the generations to come. To learn more about leaving a legacy gift, contact Kellie Kelleher-Smith, Foundation Director, at (904) 512-3796 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Jewish Future. Make It Real.
Leave a Legacy www.jewishjacksonville.org