IN THE NEWS
ICYMI: JCC Launches Coronavirus Recovery Program
Last week, we launched our COVID-19 Connect to Recovery program to serve as a one-stop shop for Staten Islanders in need of help with coronavirus relief resources. Read all about it here.
Congratulations Bella Smorgonskaya!
Congratulations to our own Bella Smorgonskaya for receiving the Spirit of Change Award at the Wagner College Chai Society's Virtual Community Mitzvah Awards! Bella, the Director of Cultural Arts at the JCC, highlights Jewish culture and brings enriching programs to all of our members—and we are lucky to have her! Congratulations again to Bella and to all of the other honorees! Read more about the Community Mitzvah Awards here.
A Special Message for Shavuot
JCC Association put together this special message in honor of Shavuot, which begins tonight at sundown. Check it out here!
Resource Navigator Program
We are excited to be chosen to be part of the City’s Resource Navigator program to assist those who have tested positive for COVID-19. You can see the Mayor’s announcement and learn more here.
100 Days of Summer Fitness Challenge
May 31 - September 7
We're partnering with JCCs across the continent to get fit together this summer! Go head-to-head with other participants in your favorite form of exercise. Whether you’re into strength training, running, group exercise, swimming, or something else, you’ll have a chance to test your mettle. The #JCCSummerFitChallenge begins on May 31st and ends on Labor Day, September 7. Make sure you’re part of the action. Anyone 13 years old or older can compete. Each participant must have a unique email address.
New for 2020 — Family Division! Families will be encouraged to track their activity time each day. One family member (who also can compete as an individual using the same email address) will enter the family’s total daily activity time.
Sign up for the #JCCSummerFitChallenge by emailing Justine Bergen at fitnessSpa@sijcc.com.
Mental Health Month
When you are going through something difficult, it is often easy to feel as though you are experiencing it alone—especially during this time of social distancing. As this video points out, it's important to remember that you aren't alone in your feelings! Talking to a friend or family member over the phone or on Zoom is a great way to stay connected and not feel so alone.
Remember, there are a variety of mental health resources available in NYC:
Ongoing Wellness Classes
We have several virtual wellness classes throughout the week! From exercise to nutrition to medical care questions and more, there's sure to be a class to help you stay well and stay connected during this time! Please see the following updated class information:
Eat Well, Live Well: Nutrition Education with Lisa: Mondays, 2pm
Health cooking class with pantry staples and easy-to-use everyday gadgets
Join us on Zoom here
Meeting ID: 914 380 9061
Positive Pulse with Lisa: Tuesdays, 1pm
Each week, Lisa will demonstrate easy at-home exercises using things around the house
Join us on Zoom here
Meeting ID: 914 380 9061
Q&A with Dr. Bloomfield: Tuesdays, 1pm
During these trying times you may have experienced long wait times to see or even speak with your Health care Provider. We have brought one to you! Come chat with Dr. Dennis Bloomfield every Tuesday about your health care needs. He specializes in Cardiology and is willing and ready to talk about all of your health care concerns!
Join us on Zoom here
Meeting ID: 863 7476 1590
Listen to Your Heart, Online with Lisa & Dr. Bloomfield: Thursdays, 1pm
Dr. Dennis Bloomfield is here to discuss the Risk of Heart Disease & Heart-Healthy Habits. At the end of each lecture he will open up the floor to any of you who have specific questions pertaining to your current health situations.
Join us on Zoom here.
Meeting ID: 914 380 9061
Check out our website for a full schedule of all of our virtual wellness programming!
At-Home Cardio Tennis Game: Tap Out
Try out this fun tennis game you can play at home! All you need is a ball, a racquet, a wall you can hit on, and a few household objects. It's a great way to get your feet moving and work on your reaction time!
Free Esports Tournaments
Do you love gaming? Try out these free games for teens ages 13-18! Compete with friends and make new ones, from around the corner and around the world. Maccabi USA has partnered with Lost Tribe Esports to present free tournaments
Did you know that we offer four different sports camps in the summer? We have soccer, basketball, gymnastics, and aquatics programs! Not only will your child improve their skills, but sports will teach your child how to be a good teammate, the value of hard work, and the power of a positive attitude! Learn more here!
ARTS AND CULTURE
May Book Club Meeting
Our second virtual Book Club meeting last week was a great success! Our members enjoyed an insightful discussion of Anna Quindlen's Miller's Valley but most of all, they enjoyed seeing each other and connecting over Zoom! We're so glad that our Book Club is staying connected even though we can't be together in person right now. We hope you'll join us for our June Book Club meeting! Stay tuned for more details!
Fun with Our Friends from IlluminArt Productions!
Sing and dance along to “Put on Your Sunday Clothes” from Broadway’s Hello Dolly as Ms. Meghan teaches you how to perform this classic number!
Link up with a phone buddy
Let's fight loneliness together! During these difficult times, it's important for us to stay connected. Are you interested in having a phone buddy? Please let us know if you would like to be the one making or receiving calls, and we will match you up with someone who fits your needs! For more information, contact Sigalit Grego at email@example.com
Ongoing Cultural Arts Classes
We miss all of our enriching Cultural Arts classes, but we are so excited to be able to offer some of them virtually! Check out our website for a full schedule of all of our virtual programming!
Music Trivia Challenge
Check your answer to our latest trivia question:
In barely 36 years, this 18th century Austrian composer produced a flood of symphonies, concertos, chamber music, and operas still celebrated for their classical perfection. Yet, he was buried in an unmarked pauper’s grave. Who was he?
He was... Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791). A child-prodigy, Mozart more than fulfilled his youthful promise. In his short life, he produced more than a hundred works that represent a mastery of classical style in perfect balance with lyric expression. Yet, despite his fame and prolific output, Mozart had no steady patron and he increasingly struggled to support his family. The family’s financial circumstances were so poor that after his death, probably from uremia, Mozart was buried in a common pauper’s grave that no one bothered to mark as his final resting place.
A Unique Duet...
Check out From the Top's Peter Dugan in a special piano "duet" of Mozart's "Marriage of Figaro"! Thanks to some clever editing, Dugan seemingly plays the piece with his double!
The Weekly Schmooze: Looking Forward to Fourth of July Festivities
Earlier this week, we celebrated Memorial Day and reflected on those brave Americans who have given our lives for our freedom. As we approach summer, we are looking ahead to our Fourth of July celebration—one of our favorite days at camp! Year after year, we look forward to a special day where we celebrate with activities that foster a sense of appreciation and love for our country. Some of our past activities for Independence Day have included "appearances" by former presidents Washington and Lincoln, hot dog barbecues, picnics and field games, patriotic decorations, and making American flag cookies and festive craft projects. The day always incorporates a ceremony that includes counselors and campers singing the National Anthem together and the raising of the American flag at the camp flagpole. The Fourth of July is such a special day to come together and celebrate the USA! We can't wait to raise the red, white, and blue together again at camp soon!
We hope you will consider registering for camp again this year, as we intend to have another wonderful summer. Registration is ongoing at camp.sijcc.org. As we adjust to the shifting landscape of this crisis, we will inform you about any changes to our programming. In the event that we have to make the heartbreaking decision not to open camp in 2020, you will receive a full refund.
With summer right around the corner, we are sure you are thinking about the status of Sunrise Day Camp-Staten Island. To keep our campers safe, we will hold our camp virtually this summer! We are excited to be able to deliver our Sunrise magic to our campers at home. To do that, we need your help! SunriseWALKS-Staten Island—our biggest fundraiser for Sunrise—is going VIRTUAL! We hope you will join us on Sunday, June 28 at 10 am for a fun virtual celebration that will help us create another amazing summer for our campers! You can register for our virtual SunriseWALKS here.
KIDS AND FAMILIES
Hour of Code
Want to learn the basics of computer coding and program fun games? Try an Hour of Code! There are hundreds of free coding activities featuring various characters and games for every grade level and interest!
COVID-19 Connect to Recovery
Do you need help accessing social services related to COVID-19 relief? We recently launched our COVID-19 Connect to Recovery program, a one-stop shop for Staten Islanders to access social services that will help them recover from the effects of the current crisis. Read more about this new program and get information on accessing these social services here!
Bereavement Support Group
Tuesdays, beginning May 26, 10am-11:30am
If you are interested in joining this 6-week online Bereavement Support Group, contact Sandy Haft, LMSW, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 718-475-5274.
Special Enrollment Period for Health Insurance
New York State announced a Special Enrollment Period for individuals who may have lost their health insurance as a result of their employment ending due to Coronavirus. If enrollment in Qualified Health Plans through NY State of Health Marketplace is completed, individuals will have coverage effective April 1, 2020. Enrollment into Medicaid, Essential Plan and Child Health Plus is open year-round. Consumers can apply for coverage through JCC NYSOH Navigators by phone at 718.981.1400 or 718-475-5271.
IlluminArt Productions Presents...Empowering Voices: The Virtual Edition
Saturday, May 30, 8pm
Enjoy a virtual concert from the comfort of your own home with this musical revue from our friends at IlluminArt Productions! Check out a special sneak peak here and tune in on YouTube on May 30! Sponsored by the Avis Foundation for Temple Israel of Staten Island.
Coronavirus has unfortunately led to a serious spike in anti-Semitic activity on social media and is impacting local Jewish communities. Dedicated experts and researchers at the Simon Wiesenthal Center are working around the clock to find, expose, and combat anti-Semitism and hate. We cannot afford to allow such hate to go unchallenged. Please partner with the SWC by reporting anti-Semitic or other coronavirus-related hate activity online or impacting your community by contacting the Simon Wiesenthal Center at SWCNY@Wiesenthal.com.
UJA-Federation of New York has partnered with Columbia University, which is conducting a survey to track COVID-19’s impact on New York City neighborhoods in real time, filling in critical gaps in knowledge of the virus to better understand the needs across our communities. Ultimately, CovidWatcher will enable public officials, policymakers, and medical institutions better coordinate their response and target resources during the pandemic and the critical period that will follow. The survey is intended for everyone to fill out, regardless of symptoms or concerns about exposure. The ultimate goal is for every New Yorker to complete this survey. You can complete the survey here. If you have any questions, please contact CovidWatcher@columbia.edu.
U.S. Census 2020
If you haven’t filled out the census yet, now is the time to do it! It is vital that we are ALL counted to secure funding for housing, transportation, schools, and other services we rely on. It takes less than 10 minutes and is confidential. You can fill it out by mail, online or by calling (844) 330-2020.
Be sure to check out these additional programs from our friends at other Jewish organizations around the country!
The Women of SHTISEL: Monday, June 1, 11am
Their heads covered by wigs and scarves, the ultra-Orthodox women of Geula were invisible to outsiders...until Shtisel pulled back the curtain on their lives, their hearts and their strengths. Now, hear from the actresses who embodied Giti, Libbi, Ruchami and Elisheva - and from the female producer who shepherded the family drama into an unlikely global sensation. Register for the Zoom conference here or view the livestream here.
Maccabi USA Book Club: Monday, June 8, 1pm
The Maccabi USA Book Club will be reading Palestine Posts: An Eyewitness Account of the Birth of Israel, by Daniel S. Chertoff. This powerful first person account allows us to re-experience a momentous turning point in Jewish history. This event will be hosted by Don Kent, Maccabi USA alum and First Vice President. Join us for author Daniel Chertoff's presentation and a discussion to follow! Register here
Every year, the JCC serves over 6,000 people in crisis. This year, that number has grown as Staten Islanders experience hardships related to COVID-19. Here’s the story of a family directly affected by the COVID-19 crisis that we were able to help:
We were able to help a husband and wife with two young adult children living at home. The husband lost his job, and then contracted COVID-19. It has taken a while for him to recover. After struggling to pay the bills, they contacted the JCC about our Kosher Food Pantry. In addition to providing them with food, we were able to refer them to a financial counselor to help with their debt. We also helped them get screened for SNAP eligibility to get additional food as well as other benefits.
Donate to our Families in Need campaign here to help families like this one.
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BERMAN EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
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