Volunteers are the life blood of Senior Centers. Without them, these meeting places for older adults to interact and receive much-needed services, could not exist. This situation is true in the USA and around the world.
In a recent story, The Jerusalem Post reported that the city possesses more than 66,000 people over the age of 65. The Jerusalem Center for Senior Health and Life Enrichment in Israel is a much-needed helping site. It offers a morning seniors’ program, an in-house senior day-care center, meals on wheels, and distribution of dry-food packages for underprivileged seniors, and many other services.
The organization was founded 36 years ago by executive director and long-time educator Naomi Sharabi with her 106-year-old grandfather. In its earliest days the center was a soup kitchen to help older adults gain a sense of independence in their later years.
More than 100 volunteers are responsible for the mass food preparation and delivery for elderly residents all over Jerusalem who rely for sustenance according to according to Ms. Sharabi.
The center offers well-organized activities to Jerusalem's aging population. The senior daycare is open to residents across the city from 9 a.m. to noon, provides breakfast, an exercise program, art and cultural activities, and a hot lunch.
The center is making plans to expand. A piece of property has been purchased for construction of a six-story building, set to open in 2014. A full-day care program will be offered six days a week and will include a fitness center, a beauty salon, medical and dental services, dance studios, a concert auditorium and a swimming pool.