The JCC’s Bulletin dates back to the 1930s, when it was a premier source of news for the local Jewish community. We are proud to continue this tradition of keeping our JCC community informed via our virtual Bulletin.
The bulletin circa 1974
In memory of Mickey Levinson, who enjoyed many happy times at the JCC while growing up on Staten Island.
-Murray & Marilyn Liebman
In everlasting memory Clara (Chaja Blima) Chodeles.
In Memory of Dr. Ronald Leventhal:
Ron and Helene Leventhal were an extraordinary couple who devoted decades of their lives to the survival and growth of the JCC. I was honored to call them my friends.
In memory of Dr. Ron Leventhal.
The Richmond Rockets running club and the Joan & Alan Bernikow JCC of Staten Island are partnering to present the We Heart Our Seniors Virtual Race. The race, which will take place from February 6 to February 20, will support senior citizens through the JCC’s Seniors in Need initiative, as well as high school seniors through the Richmond Rockets Scholarship Fund.
Participants are encouraged to run a 5K or 10K at their own pace, outdoors at a local park or indoors on a treadmill. Participants can record their running times and submit them to the race coordinators to compete for best pace awards.
Registration fees collected from the race will not only fund scholarships for track athletes but will also help vulnerable senior citizens. During the pandemic, the JCC has distributed thousands of free, healthy meals to seniors through a contactless, grab-and-go pickup program. These meals reach hundreds of individuals who may be facing social isolation, financial hardship, and difficulty shopping for themselves due to the pandemic.
Orit Lender, CEO of the JCC, said “Seniors in our community rely on these meals. It’s so important to us that we can continue to make sure they don’t need to worry about where their next meal will come from.”
A registration fee of $25 can provide three healthy pre-packaged meals for seniors. Registration options include individual sign-ups and sweetheart packages for couples.
Ms. Lender added, “Right now, we only have enough funding to run the program through the end of January. With the help of this event and our Seniors in Need campaign, we hope to be able to continue the grab-and-go program throughout the winter. We are grateful to partner with our friends at the Richmond Rockets on this fun and important virtual race.”
The event coincides with February’s designation as Heart Health Month. Lisa Lubarsky, president of the Richmond Rockets and staff member at the JCC, said, “This race is a wonderful way to promote heart health while also opening our hearts to those in need in our community, especially seniors who have been impacted by the pandemic. We miss the excitement of running races together in-person, but it feels great to know that so many people on Staten Island will be out there getting healthier and doing some good for others.”
To register for the race, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-richmond-rockets-jcc-presents-we-heart-our-seniors-virtual-race-tickets-135576257235.
Learn more about our Seniors in Need campaign here.
Though the weather has been cold lately, we have our eyes on summer!
Earlier this month, we launched registration for JCC Day Camp and unveiled our brand-new camp website! It has been incredibly exciting to get feedback from parents on how much their kids are looking forward to coming back this summer. To help parents who are struggling financially, we are pleased to announce that we were able to keep rates the same as last year.
In addition, our Early Bird pricing gives a discount, so if you sign your child up before February 15th, you can take advantage of this offer. We also offer scholarships for those in need, and you can click here to request an application. I invite you to check out our new website, and if you’re a new camp parent, to sign up for our Virtual Open House on January 31st to learn more about camp.
Despite having the odds stacked against us, last year was one of the best camp seasons we’ve ever had. Even with smaller groups and new regulations, we were able to have an amazing summer, giving children the sense of normalcy they needed in difficult times. Kids enjoyed nature, made new friends, learned to swim, played sports, tried woodworking and other STEM activities, and most importantly, got a break from their screens. For children who had been isolated for months, camp was exactly what they needed.
With increased safety protocols, we were able to ensure the safety of all our campers and staff. Of over 700 campers at our 9 JCC locations throughout the borough, none tested positive for COVID-19 at any point throughout the summer. I am grateful to our diligent and dedicated staff members, who made it their mission to give our kids a safe and fun experience. We have no doubt we will exceed expectations again this year.
In addition to our Traditional Day Camp, we have opportunities for children of all interests and abilities. Last year, we advocated fiercely for Marvin’s Camp for Children with Special Needs to open alongside our other camps. Halfway through the summer, we were granted permission to open. This year, we are hopeful that we can give these children a full summer experience.
We have already begun registering Marvin’s and inclusion campers in anticipation of having them back at camp and will continue to advocate on their behalf with governmental agencies.
Our Lucille & Jay Chazanoff Sunrise Day Camp-Staten Island serves children with cancer and their siblings. Due to the fragile nature of our campers, we decided to hold a virtual camp last year. Campers were able to do art projects, play games, and do other camp activities from the safety of their homes. While we don’t yet know what this year will bring, we are preparing multiple options for Sunrise Day Camp. As soon as it is safe to do so, we will be back in person with our Sunrise campers once again.
Soon we will also begin registering children for our sports and performing arts camps, as well as the camp programs run through our Beacon and Cornerstone sites throughout the borough.
While the days ahead seem cloudy, we can see the bright light of camp shining through. We are counting down the days until summer, when we can see hundreds of happy faces back at camp!
-Orit Lender, CEO
We share the shock and outrage that so many have expressed about the events that occurred in Washington, DC yesterday. Our country’s democracy is based upon a peaceful transition of power, and any attack on that process is an affront to everything we hold dear as Americans. I am grateful that our elected officials, their staff, law enforcement, and members of the press were kept safe during this ordeal.
Now is the time for us to come together as a community to condemn the violence and hatred we have seen. Hate speech and violence have no place on Capitol Hill or anyplace else in our country.
At our JCC, we believe in unity and inclusion, welcoming people of all walks of life. We serve our community in over 31 locations around the Island, which means we meet and work with people from different backgrounds. At every single location, we are committed to providing an inclusive environment for every person who walks through our doors. When we see imagery of people who proudly display hate symbols and racist slogans attacking our government, it is incredibly hurtful.
Despite all of this, history has shown us that we can persevere through these difficult times. I know that we, as a community and a country, will get through this if we work together.
As we navigate the next few days, we want everyone who enters our doors to feel safe and secure. Though there are no specific threats to our JCC, we are prioritizing keeping our facilities safe. Through our partnership with UJA, we are a part of the Community Security Initiative at the Jewish Community Relations Council. Their representative, Terence Byrne, Staten Island Regional Security Manager, has been in regular contact with the NYPD Intelligence Bureau on our behalf and is keeping us apprised of any updates that impact us.
Let us all hope for peace and healing in our country.
-Orit Lender, CEO
There’s no question that we are in difficult times right now. Though we work every day to navigate the uncertainty around us, as we celebrate a new year, we are looking towards the future. The JCC has been an important part of our community for over 90 years, and we will continue to be there for you and meet your needs for years to come.
That’s why I’ve unveiled my plan for what I’m calling the JCC’s Centers of Excellence, which was created through listening sessions with our board, staff, and community members. The plan reconfigures the way our agency operates, grouping similar departments into new teams and assigning each Center equal importance. These eight Centers of Excellence will strengthen our structure by creating a stronger foundation of which to build off.
The Centers of Excellence are:
We feel that these new Centers of Excellence will allow us to be more user-friendly while also pushing the agency to grow and evolve. Operating in a team approach will help us ensure collaboration and that we’re engaging community members as we develop programs. It will also allow us to create a vision for the future of the JCC that will sustain us long after we have passed the current moment of crisis.
We also want to help our staff, who have been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic, find easier ways to share resources and solve problems through teamwork. Additionally, you can support the JCC by joining a committee, volunteering your time teaching classes, or sharing your thoughts and ideas with us. We believe you play a vital role on our team and are partners in our success. With your assistance, our agency will grow and change as we continue to move through this unprecedented era.
My overall goal is to give you, our members and participants, the best experience possible and meet your needs. We hope this new layout will allow you to more easily connect to our services and programs, whether it’s on the phone, virtually, or in person. We love hearing from you, and it helps us understand your wants and needs as we move forward. Together, our agency will grow to be stronger into the future.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.
1466 Manor Road
Staten Island, NY 10314
485 Victory Blvd
Staten Island, NY 10301
1297 Arthur Kill Road
Staten Island, NY 10312
BERMAN EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
2221 Richmond Ave.
Staten Island, NY 10314