Before heading out to deliver boxes of Passover food to families in need for the 19th annual Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service project, 8 year-old Chana Horewitz poses with a box of matzos recapturing a similar photo that was taken years earlier when she delivered her first box of food at just 3 years old.
On April 2, 2017 Chana and her mom Debbie were two of 92 volunteers who helped deliver more than 400 Seder meals to families in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky who were unable to afford the high cost of Passover food.
Like Chana and Debbie, many of this year’s volunteers have a history of donating their time to this project. Tom Glassman is on his 10th year of delivering and plans to come back next year. “This is something I look forward to doing every year, and I truly enjoy my time spent volunteering.”
In addition to recurring volunteers there was an abundance of new faces this year including families from Rockwern Academy, Jewish sororities, and a group of Israeli students. Although the volunteers consisted of people with different histories and of different ages, they all had one common goal, to ensure those less fortunate have an adequate holiday meal.
To prepare for the deliveries, volunteers came the week prior to the Jewish Family Service Barbash Family Vital Support Center to sort the thousands of cans and boxes of donated food. Local congregations, organizations, and businesses collected nonperishable, boxed food. The remaining items were purchased with monetary donations from The Rockwern Charitable Foundation and individual community donors. Remke Markets at their HydePark location made it easy for shoppers to donate money by offering tear-off slips in specific dollar amounts that could be easily added to their purchase.
Each participating household received boxes filled with matzah, matzah ball soup mix, macaroons, gefilte fish, horseradish, Passover candy, grape juice, nuts, apples, and a chicken dinner.
The Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service project was started by a group of dedicated volunteers in 1998 and continues to be embraced by the community. It involves more than just delivering food.
“In addition to delivering food, volunteers often spend time with the recipients engaging in friendly conversation,” says Sandee Golden, Jewish Family Service Food Pantry and Volunteer Manager. “Many of the people who we deliver to are older adults and they really enjoy their time spent with the volunteers, but it definitely goes both ways. The inspiring stories that we get from our volunteers about their experiences makes it obvious that this project goes beyond delivering food.”
Cash or food donations are appreciated as the need for food continues throughout the year at the Jewish Family Service food pantry, which feeds an average of 130 people each month. It is the only food pantry in the region that also includes a section with a full array of kosher food.
Jewish Family Service is supported in part by funds made available from the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, United Way of Greater Cincinnati and The Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati.
When 400 Seder meals are needed,
Jewish Family Service is there.
And we can’t do it without you.
Dr. Samuel S. Rockwern Passover Delivery of Jewish Family Service is a special project bringing together monetary contributions and volunteer energy to brighten the holiday for individuals and families experiencing financial difficulties.
Won’t you help us deliver Passover meals to families in need?
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 24, 2017. Donate online now.
3. Donate your time.
Join us as a volunteer by assembling the Seder boxes 11 am - 2 pm on Monday, March 27, 2017 or Tuesday, March 28, 2017.
You can also help deliver the boxes to the individuals and families on Sunday, April 2, 2017.
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.
For more information or to volunteer, 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.