Ana Sazonov, Simon Luxemburg, and Myla Green knew that they should do something for their community once the COVID-19 pandemic started. The question was just what that would be.
“We thought, ‘What is the need in the community? What do we need to do? Who needs what?’” Sazonov said.
After hearing from Luxemburg’s friend who works at a hospital and did not have access to Kosher food, the team knew they came upon something special.
“That’s where it clicked...We brought all of this together,” Sazonov said. “We saw that this is the biggest need that we have right now in our community.”
JewBer has since provided over 1600 meals to low income families, front line heroes, and Holocaust survivors in the Boston area. Through a collaboration with Kosher and Israeli small businesses in the city, the team has brought communities together to support many throughout these unprecedented times.
“To hear the impact of JewBer on others makes me wake up in the morning with a smile,” Sazonov said.
The JewBer community celebrated the organization’s growth with a virtual “Miracle of JewBer” get together on December 13. Guests heard about the organization’s growth from its co-founders as well as recipients of JewBer deliveries, Baruch Stone and Liat Greenwood, and Volunteer Yevgeniya Monisova.
“I hope JewBer continues to be strong and keep giving, as it does so well!” JewBer Community Member Blima Maged said. “You are a proactive, winning team. The Jewish community is better off since you came into existence.”
The warmth and impact within the JewBer community was evident through comments from volunteers and recipients alike throughout the event.
“It’s so awesome to see how far JewBer has come,” said Brontte Hwang, another JewBer community member.
JewBer Recipient Hope Kellman mentioned the impact the organization’s deliveries have made on her as well, adding that she became unemployed at the beginning of the pandemic.
“But JewBer was there to take care of me,” Kellman said.
Now Kellman works and continues to fight against the pandemic and save lives at Boston Children’s Hospital and Brandeis University.
“It is really the highlight of my life,” Kellman said. “I am so busy taking care of others, that it feels so good to be taken care of...You have given me a part of what I’ve been missing all these months.”
And the JewBer team definitely backs that sentiment.
“Usually on Hanukkah, we talk about ‘Nes Gadol Hayah Sham,’ the miracle that happened there,” Luxemburg said. “We, at JewBer really like to talk about ‘Nes Gadol Hayah Po,’ the miracle that happened here.”
Looking toward 2021, Sazonov recognizes the impact JewBer has on seniors, low income families, and frontline heroes. JewBer will continue to grow while assisting and supporting these groups weekly with a warm meal and a happy smile.
“Each of these meals is not just food. It’s an individual meal that’s delivered to a person by one of our amazing volunteers,” Luxemburg said.
“JewBer is a miracle,” Sazonov said. “I can’t believe we’re at this point. I can’t believe we’ve delivered so many meals.”