Fighting Hunger during Passover and all year round...

When the choice is Matzo or Medicine,
Jewish Family Service is there.

Volunteers deliver Passover meals and smiles to families across Cincinnati


CINCINNATI APRIL 2, 2018     “When we brought the Passover food to their homes, their smiles and warm welcomes expressed how appreciative they were,” said Amy Diamond who, along with her husband Eddie Wolf, volunteered for the 20th annual Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service project on Sunday, March 25, 2018. This project helps families who are experiencing financial difficulties celebrate Passover.


“Assisting families who otherwise could not afford to observe the holiday is a worthwhile and important service that Jewish Family Service does in the Jewish community. Eddie and I were happy to participate,” she added.

Fred Kanter and granddaughter Masha
Fred Kanter and granddaughter Masha


Diamond and her husband joined 125 other volunteers who delivered more than 400 boxes, filled with everything needed for a Passover meal, to Cincinnati area families. Many of the recipients are older adults living on a fixed income who find it difficult to afford the expensive Passover food while also struggling with day-to-day expenses.


The volunteers met at Jewish Family Service Barbash Family Vital Support Center in Clifton to fill boxes with matzo, matzo ball soup mix, macaroons, gefilte fish, horseradish, Passover candy, grape juice, nuts, apples, a prepared chicken dinner, and a Happy Passover greeting.


“Our Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery project is an excellent opportunity to pass the value of Tikun Olum (repairing the world) to the next generations. I see people volunteering with their children and grandchildren,” said Jewish Family Service CEO Liz Vogel as she helped fill boxes for Fred Kanter and his 5-year-old granddaughter Masha to deliver.


The Passover delivery project was started by a group of dedicated volunteers in 1998 and continues to be embraced by the community. It involves sharing smiles and conversation in addition to delivering food.  With a lead sponsorship cash gift from The Rockwern Charitable Foundation, it brings together donations and volunteer energy to brighten the Passover holiday for people experiencing food insecurity.


Some volunteers, such as Rabbi George Barnard and Zina Zmood, have participated in the project almost yearly since its inception twenty years ago. For others, this was a new experience.


Leo Schuller
Mel and Irene Frieman


“We have been longtime supporters of Jewish Family Service, but this was our first time volunteering to deliver Passover meals. We had a wonderful experience visiting with each family, and were happy to help them be able to celebrate the holiday,” said Irene Frieman who volunteered with her husband Mel.


“Nobody should have to choose between buying matzo or medicine," said Vogel. “Unfortunately, this struggle is not limited to Passover. The need for food continues throughout the year. Cash and food donations are always appreciated to help the more than 200 households that rely on Jewish Family Service Heldman Family Food Pantry to stop hunger.”


Jewish Family Service Heldman Family Food Pantry is the source for free kosher and non-kosher food, fresh produce, personal care, and household care items for people throughout the Greater Cincinnati Jewish community experiencing financial difficulties, as well as anyone in need living in the Clifton neighborhood. 



Jewish Family Service receives support in part from the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, United Way of Greater Cincinnati and The Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati.

Photos from the 2018 20th Annual 

Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of
Jewish Family Service project

and MORE photos...

Robyn loves sharing Passover Seder with her family. 


Her family includes her 14 year old son who was recently diagnosed with epilepsy; her 22 year old daughter with mental health challenges and special needs; and her husband who was laid off when his insulin-dependent diabetes affected his steady job. 


Although Robyn has been working 30 years full time at a doctor’s office, affording even one box of matzo is out of reach when her family is struggling to pay medical and household bills.


She shouldn’t have to choose between matzo and medicine.


Jewish Family Service’s Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery project helps her family have the food needed to observe the holiday...and continue the tradition she cherishes for the next generation.

Celebrating Passover is a beautiful tradition that requires special food to properly observe the holiday. But our neighbors experiencing financial difficulty may need to choose between buying matzo or medicine. You can help with a gift to the 20th Annual Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service project.


400 Passover meals will be delivered on Sunday, March 25 to vulnerable Cincinnati families - many of them older adults on fixed incomes - who otherwise could not afford Passover food.


We need to raise $15,000 by March 16, 2018. Please help us reach our goal.  

Every $36 donation feeds a family of 2 by providing a box filled with: 

Matzo - Matzo Ball Soup Mix - Frozen Prepared Chicken Dinner - Grape Juice - Apples

Gefilte Fish - Horseradish - Chopped Nuts Macaroons - Passover Candy

and a Happy Passover greeting


You and your family can also help by volunteering to deliver a box or two...along with your smile. To volunteer, call Sandee at 513-766-3352 or sign up online. 


Together, we strengthen lives in times of need.


Thank you for your generous support,

Liz Vogel, CEO


p.s.  What if we get more donations than we need? Nothing is ever wasted. Extra food and money will go to support Jewish Family Service Heldman Family Food Pantry. More than 200 households rely on our pantry to stop hunger throughout the year.

400 Seder meals will be delivered March 25, 2018 to families who could not otherwise afford the Passover food. 


And we can’t do it without you.

How can you help?

You can donate food, money and/or time.


1. Collect and donate Passover food. Barrels for Passover food collections have been placed at most congregations and at the Mayerson JCC. Please drop off boxes of Matzah, Macaroons or Matzah Ball Soup Mix to be included in the Passover deliveries to famiilies in need.


2. Help by donating the money needed to purchase fresh food items that cannot be donated. We are off to a great start with a very generous contribution from The Rockwern Charitable Foundation. Your tax-deductible donation will help us reach the $60,000 we need to stop hunger in our community year-round. We need to raise $15,000 by March 16, 2018. Donate online now.


3. Donate your time.

     Join us as a volunteer by assembling the Seder boxes 10 am - 3 pm on Monday, March 19, 2018 or 11 am - 1 pm Tuesday, March 20, 2018. 

     You can also help deliver the boxes to the individuals and families on Sunday, March 25, 2018.


     The preparation and delivery site will be at Jewish Family Service Barbash Family Vital Support Center, 3113 Clifton Avenue, Clifton, OH 45220 on the campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Sign up to volunteer now.


Volunteer for Passover Delivery


Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service is a special project bringing together your donations and volunteer energy to brighten the holiday for individuals and families experiencing financial difficulties and food insecurity.



For more information, contact

Sandee Golden, Heldman Family Food Pantry and Volunteer Program Manager




Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service was founded as Cincinnati Pesach Delivery Project in 1998 by a group of dedicated volunteers from Northern Hills Synagogue and Yavneh Day School.