This is one of the new elderly centers that we began working with several weeks ago as a part of our new initiative. Leket provided new hot plates for them to maintain warmth of food after it is delivered to them (since their previous way of heating food was terrible). The center has special workshops for their different groups: Bucharian, Ethiopian, Russian, Israeli/Moroccan/of Sephardi decent
Rachel: Rachel, 83 years old, has spent the last 42 years in Neve Yaakov. She began coming to Merkaz L’Gil Hazahav three years ago. She is a widow with four children: two boys and two girls, and many grandchildren. Rachel immigrated to Israel, leaving Morocco as a young child. She then spent the majority of her career as a hotel cook. She worked in many hostel and also privately. She comes to Neve Yaakov’s elderly center from Monday through Wednesday every week.
“I love the hot, delicious food. We did not have this food until two weeks ago, and we’re so grateful for it. We were hungry during the day two weeks ago. Now we receive fresh, cooked meals.” – Rachel
Miriam: Miriam lives in Pisgat Ze’ev. She had participated in a community center there for three years, but she was dissatisfied and felt lonely despite her efforts to surround herself with others. The only piece of the center she enjoyed were the evening lectures.
Now, for the past five years, she busses to Neve Yaakov’s elderly center every day. She makes this journey because she is truly happy there. She loved the home’s coordinator, her friends who also come to the center daily, and especially now- loves coming for the delicious food.
“I don’t eat at home. This is the only hot meal that I receive every day. It provides me with vitamins. It feels home-cooked, and everything is clean and safe. We all sit together to eat- truly a homey feeling. All I have is coffee during the evening when I come home, and that is enough – thanks to this wonderful meal. Meat, rice, vegetables…”
Miriam has 4 kids and 12 grandchildren. “I am not lacking at home,” she says, “ I love eating here because of the social atmosphere and environment. Without it I would be very lonely and depressed. I don’t like to be home alone, without anyone. I am truly satisfied here.”