Union County Seniors Donate Retirement Time [AUDIO]
Two Union County seniors are logging long hours at their advanced age to give back to their community.
What's so great about the Garden State? Let us know using the form at the bottom of this story.
Their names are Bill Goldfischer and Eddie Michaelis. They are 89 and 90 years old, respectively.
Each weekday they put in hours in the kitchen at the YM-YWHA of Union County, which is a Jewish Community Center.
Goldfischer heads the kitchen, for what is supposed to be a part-time job. However, he registers up to triple the hours he's scheduled for in any given week. Michaelis receives no pay at all, just volunteers his time.
The Y is the only kosher five-day-a-week senior congregate lunch site in Union County, where the kitchen prepares over 9,000 meals a year for older adults. Hundreds more are prepared each week for children and staff in the daycare program, as well as homebound seniors.
So what keeps these men so vibrant and selfless at their age?
"If I wasn't working, I'd sit home and eat and sleep," Goldfischer said.
"Otherwise, you vegetate and you don't do anything," Michaelis explained.
For 25 years, Goldfischer has been in the kitchen at the Y to begin his day at around 6 a.m., where he orders the food, does all the purchasing, and oversees all lunch preparation. Michaelis has been at his side for the past 18 years.
"It makes me feel good at the end of the day that, at least, I did something," Michaelis said. "I didn't just sit around doing nothing and try to help people in the little way I can."
"We're ready to help the seniors that come in in any way we can with food, or what not," Goldfischer said.
The program is funded by the Y, which is a partner agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ and the New Jersey Division on Aging.
More Good News
The Cancer Institute of New Jersey
The Cancer Institute of New Jersey is celebrating its nurses for their continued commitment to patients and the community. In addition to ensuring that all patients received critical care during and after Superstorm Sandy, the nurses are lending a hand to restore the Jersey Shore. On March 23, a team of nurses will volunteer their time to clean-up parts of Sea Bright affected by the storm. "Our team wanted to do something beyond our regular call of duty to help those who were impacted. As good citizens, we can lend a hand through debris clean-up and restoring our ecosystem. By doing so, we hope to inspire others to help make a difference in their community," said Carla Schaefer, chair of the Nursing Development Committee. The nurses also lend a hand in other ways from educating the public about cancer prevention to organizing a prom for teen cancer patients. To learn more about The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, visit their website.
New Jersey resident Maureen Spataro is giving back to the victims of Superstorm Sandy in a big way. Spataro is spearheading a prom dress drive for Sandy victims, and has received donations throughout the state. She came up with the idea after donating to a similar drive in Brooklyn. In addition to prom dresses, Spataro has also collected jewelry and shoes. The donations collected will be available to the public free of charge during a "Shore 2 Share" shopping day on March 23 at The Sawmill in Seaside. To make an appointment, e-mail Spataro.
Taste of Linden
A fundraiser is being held to benefit Linden's Hurricane Sandy victims. The "Taste of Linden" fundraiser will take place on March 20 at John T. Gregorio Center. Tickets are $10.00 each. For more information, call June Lazaro at 908-930-8310.