Our Aviary Has New Residents

Cyndee Hansen donated two zebra finches, named Don and MC, to our aviary on Helen Bader Center. She rescued the finches from a dumpster two years ago, and since their female companions passed away, she felt that Don and MC would be happier surrounded by more birds.

Thanks for your donation Cyndee! The finches and their cagemates will continue to bring happiness to our residents.

View the photos 

  • March 3, 2016

Getting to Know Sarah Breach, Social Work Intern

Every year, Chai Point Senior Living hosts a social work intern as a part of University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Social Work Master’s Degree program. This semester, we welcome Sarah Breach. Sarah interns at Chai Point on Mondays and Tuesdays. In recognition of Social Work Month, we spoke with Sarah and invite you to get to know her too.

Liz Brach: How did you come to be interning with our organization?

Sarah Breach:I’m earning my master’s degree in Social Work at UWM, and an internship is part of the program. I was placed here, and I’m working closely alongside Carolyn Schuman and Dana Rubin-Winkelman, both social workers at Chai Point. I started interning at the end of January 2016 and I’ll be here through August. So far, it’s been such a great experience!

LB: What will you be doing during your time with us?

SB: I’ll mostly be working one-on-one with the residents here, and I’ll also be working directly with the families. I’m really excited to be here helping the residents.

LB: Tell us about how you decided to study social work.

SB: It’s in my blood. Both my mom and my sister are social workers. I did my undergrad at University of Wisconsin-Madison in Sociology and Social Welfare. After I graduated, I worked for three years as a caregiver for seniors in the community. After working for a few years, I decided that it was time to go back to school for Social Work.

LB: Though it’s early in your internship, could you tell us about something you have learned?

SB: So far, it’s been interesting to learn about the idea of ‘aging in place.’ It’s something that I hadn’t thought about before, and thought that it mostly had to do with people staying in their homes. Now that I’m here, I see that this is such a wonderful facility for people because they don’t have to move across town to a different place when their needs change. They can stay here and still have their friends stop by for a visit.

LB: Where are you from?

SB: I’m originally from Racine, Wisconsin. I’ve been living here in Milwaukee since I graduated from UW-Madison, and I’m here on the East Side. I really do like it here in Milwaukee and definitely plan to stay after I get my master’s.

LB: What do you like to do in your free time?

SB: I stay pretty laid back! I like to read science fiction and fantasy books, play video games, listen to music, and I also like to play the violin.

Photo: Sarah and Chai Point Senior Living resident Elaine Hornick share a laugh and conversation.

  • March 3, 2016

A Thank You to Social Workers

They are our residents’ advocates and loyal friends, their problem solvers and educators; they are our socialworkers. This March, we honor our social workers for all of the support and services they provide to residents every day. The social workers at the Jewish Home and Care Center, Chai Point Senior Living, and Sarah Chudnow Community work diligently every day to carry out the mission of their profession, and consistently provide hope and warmth to residents and family members.

Social Work Month, begun in the 1960s, is celebrated every March by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). This year, we acknowledge our social workers’ dedication to residents through the 2016 theme of “Forging Solutions Out of Challenges.”

Carolyn Schuman, social worker at Chai Point, says, “Much of what I do here day-to-day is problem solving and solution finding. From helping residents sort through their junk mail and getting them registered to vote all the way to working one-on-one with their family members, I’m here to resolve problems and advocate for our residents.”

Just as at Chai Point, social workers at the Jewish Home and Care Center are continuously problem solving for residents. The Jewish Home and Care Center has five social workers spread through the building. Tiffany Blackmon works on the rehab unit in the Avrum and Anita Chudnow Center, Andrea Smith is on the Ruth Coleman Center, Diana Azimov is in the Garner Center, Sarah Cohen works in the Helen Bader Center (1410 Building), and Ruth Bryskier works in the Helen Bader Center (1414 Building). Social workers at the Jewish Home and Care Center are working continuously each day to advocate for residents and be a positive part of their lives.

“I see the residents as our teachers; we learn so much from them,” explained Sarah Cohen who has been working as a social worker at the JHCC for almost four years. Diana Azimov agrees with Sarah and said, “The residents at the Jewish Home are truly special, and I’m honored to be here with them every day. We are their family.”

The social workers at the Jewish Home and Care Center, Chai Point Senior Living and Sarah Chudnow Community provide services that keep our seniors social, active, independent and connected to the community. “We help keep our residents safe, make them feel comfortable. I love the stories the residents share with me. Working here is such an incredible, fun, and rewarding experience,” said Chai Point social worker, Carolyn Schuman.

When residents come to any of the three communities, they are met with a warm and welcoming family. Social workers create a caring community and help us to live out our mission each day. Help continue our legacy: http://www.jewishseniorliving.orgdonations.org

  • March 3, 2016

Franklin Pierce Elementary School Students Bring Happiness to our Seniors

By: Julie Shlensky, Posner Chair for Intergenerational Program 

Throughout the school year, students from Franklin Pierce Elementary School bring the Read to Me Program toresidents of the Jewish Home and Care Center. To the delight of residents in the Ruth Coleman Center, Helen Bader Center and participants of the Adult Day Center, the students, who are transported via a bus provided by a generous grant from the Gene and Ruth Posner Foundation through the Jewish Home and Care Center Foundation, share more than just words with their reading partners.

The students are greeted with waving hands from the smiling residents as they enter the room. “Hi, boys! You want to read?” exclaimed one resident with delight. For each visit seniors are paired with students or put in groups to listen to third and fifth graders as they read a book they chose especially for their meeting that day. According to Carol Hooker, school support teacher, “Students are very conscientious when selecting books they want to share with the seniors.” One student brought her favorite book. Another student explained, “I decided to read the book I brought because I read it before and it was interesting to me. I thought it would be interesting to the seniors.”

Students stated many reasons for liking the Read to Me Program. “I’m happy to leave school!” explains one student. Others say that they love to read and want to give back to the community. Residents are impressed with how well the students read. Margaret, a participant in the Adult Day Center, exclaims, “The children are just beautiful! They read and read and read. It is great that they donate their time to read to us.”

Ms. Gordon, a teacher at Franklin Pierce Elementary School for six years, believes the students from Pierce are “rays of sunshine” to the residents. “My students spread love through reading,” she says. Gordon tries to teach her students that you get back what you put out in this world. Her goal is not to just teach math and reading. She wants her students to learn how to nurture and care for others. “Book knowledge goes out the window if you don’t know how to interact with people,” she adds.

“Our residents are dedicated to helping the children read. It gives them a purpose. The experience helps buildthe self-esteem of both the residents and the students,” says Carol Lukaszewicz, activities director at the Jewish Home and Care Center. Hooker adds “Students who don’t normally read look forward to reading to their senior friends.”

The students, residents, teachers and even staff are sad when it is time for the children to return to school. As they walk down the hallway to board the bus Margaret says, “Thank you, honey,” to her reading partner. Everyone is looking forward to the next visit of the Read to Me Program.

  • March 3, 2016

March Brings Well-Rounded Programming to Chai Point


March Events at Chai Point

Art. Design. History. Music. Chai Point offers all this and more with its March programs.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Alan Borsuk presents “Behind the Headlines” on Thursday, March 3, 1:30 pm. Borsuk is also a senior fellow in law and public policy at Marquette University Law School. During his newspaper career, Borsuk covered a wide range of subjects including federal courts, environmental issues, Milwaukee city government, and philanthropy and foundations in Milwaukee.

Concert pianist Zoya Makhlina Goldenberg performs on Tuesday, March 8, at 3:00 pm. The program will include classical, contemporary and jazz selections, including the music of Chopin and Mendelssohn. A native of Ukraine, Goldenberg studied piano from the age of five. After the Chernobyl disaster, she moved from Kiev to Milwaukee, where she established her piano studio.

On Wednesdays in March at 3:00 pm, Wisconsin Conservatory of Music staff members will conduct interactive classes with Chai Point residents. The lineup is: March 9, Singing with Lynn Roganske; March 16, Drumming with Julio Papon; March 23, Guitar with Marija Temo; and March 30, Harmonica with Steve Cohen.

The series “From Soup to Nuts,” featuring Milwaukee culinary professionals, continues on Thursday, March 10, at 1:30 pm, with an appetizer demonstration from Hannah Sattler. Sattler is the former catering manager of Kehillah Catering at Congregation Beth Israel Ner Tamid. Her cuisine can be described as traditional Jewish with a healthy twist.

Musician and educator Rick Aaron and piano and vocal instructor Karen Horwitz present “Music Meditation” on Friday, March 11, at 1:30 pm. Aaron and Horwitz will touch upon music to aid in the practice of meditation as well as music performed as an act of meditation.

On Sunday, March 13, at 2:00 pm, join new Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Assistant Conductor Yaniv Dinur as he speaks about his experiences in Israel and America and performs Israeli and American music – and some Chopin – on the piano. Dinur has performed with orchestras in Israel, Europe, the United States, Canada and Mexico. He is a winner of numerous conducting awards, as well as a passionate lecturer and music educator. He also founded the conducting studio at the Conservatory of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. This program is presented as a part of RUACH’s Rubin Sharpe Tribute Series. RUACH’s mission is to enrich and educate Greater Milwaukee with creative arts programming, rooted in Jewish values.

Milwaukee filmmaker Leendert “Wim” Leydes presents his documentary A Tribute to Harry Makowski on Monday, March 14, at 2:00 pm. In 2011, Leydes, an immigrant to Milwaukee from the Netherlands, met Harry (Hersh Zvi) Makowski, and they clicked instantly, referring to each other as “grandfather” and “grandson.” Leydes, who has a long-standing interest in the Holocaust and related subjects, discovered that Makowski served in the Jewish Brigade organized by the British Army during the final months of World War II and served in Israel’s War of Independence of 1948. Leydes gave a presentation about Makowski’s life at the Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear on June 6, 2014, the 70th anniversary of the World War II landing at Normandy in France in 1944. The film chronicles Makowski’s remarkable biography.

“Jewish History Journey at Chai Point” continues on Monday, March 14, at 2:45 pm, with “Medieval Jewish Life: The Ghetto;” and Monday, March 21, at 2:45 pm, with “Enlightenment: Reforms in Western Europe.” Facilitated by Rabbi Steven Adams, the series explores the culture and religion from its beginnings to today and beyond. “Jewish History” runs through May 2016; stay tuned for future dates and topics.

On Sunday, March 20, at 2:00 pm, Marc Davis, pianist, presents an afternoon of jazz standards. Davis has been a mainstay of the Milwaukee jazz scene for over 25 years. His performances display a strong sense of tradition, incorporating the innovations of the bebop masters while still keeping an ear to more modern sensibilities.

Musician Jeff Winter performs Jewish and Israeli Music on Monday, March 21, at 3:30 pm. Winter is one half of the Chicago-based duo Jeff & Janis, known for bringing a lively and engaging interpretation to traditional and contemporary songs. He has combined his love for Jewish and American popular music to create a repertoire that includes standards, folk, popular music and more.

Chai Point favorite James Slauson, Professor of Art History and Humanities at MIAD, returns for another insightful art history lecture on Tuesday, March 22, at 3:00 pm. His publications include articles on Mediterranean art and culture, as well as writing on art and design locally and internationally.

The “Designs of Our Lives” series continues with a presentation from photographer Eric Oxendorf on Thursday, March 31, at 1:30 pm. An experienced architectural, industrial and location photographer, Oxendorf is presently celebrating his 36th year serving the design, construction and materials professions. His studio is based in Milwaukee, yet he travels throughout the planet on assignments for many varied clients. His work has been seen in many editorial, professional and trade magazines and has won awards for clients since graduating from Layton School of Art in 1974. The “Designs of Our Lives” series focuses on the appreciation of design and how it has enhanced our daily living. Speakers will include area architects, product designers, interior designers and photographers.

All programs and performances are free unless otherwise noted. Free parking is also available under the building at 1414 N. Prospect Avenue. These events are in addition to regularly scheduled activities such as yoga and NIA. As always, attending a class, a concert or special event at Chai Point Senior Living is a great way to sample the “Chai” life!

Chai Point Senior Living offers assisted and independent living apartments in an elegant high-rise building overlooking Lake Michigan. Geared for today’s active and engaged older adults, Chai Point residents are sophisticated and culturally, socially and politically engaged.


  • February 28, 2016

March Brings Varied Programming to Sarah Chudnow Community



March Events at SCC

SCC welcomes Irish dance students from the Beglan Dance Academy on Sunday, March 6, at 3:30 pm. The Beglan Academy, founded in 2007, offers high caliber dance instruction to children starting at age five, and is led by Sean Beglan, the former lead of Riverdance. Enjoy an afternoon of talented performers and traditional Irish music.

On Monday, March 7, at 2:00 pm, find out who the next mayor of Mequon will be and join us for the Mayoral Forum. Hear what the candidates have to say, ask questions, and make an informed decision before voting on Tuesday, April 5.

Rabbi Steve Adams continues his series, “Bible Women,” on Mondays, March 7 and 21, at 3:00 pm, with “Deborah the Judge.” These presentations will include some texts, discussion, and music from a piece called Bible Women, written by Elizabeth Swados, who recently passed away. “Bible Women” runs twice monthly through June 2016; stay tuned for future dates and topics.

On Wednesday, March 16, at 2:00 pm, Detective Andy Fischer of the Mequon Police Department presents “How to Avoid Senior Scams.” Scammers prey on targets of opportunity and seniors are often the most vulnerable. Learn from an expert on how to not to fall victim to telephone or mail scams.

Author and speaker Leendert “Wim” Leydes visits to discuss his book, My Jewish Journey – A Gentile’s Journey through Jewish History, on Monday, March 21, at 2:00 pm. Follow Ledyes on his personal Jewish journey as he shares his encounters with Holocaust survivors and Partisan fighters, and his visits with Jewish notables to Milwaukee, as well as his passion for the Jewish people, culture and history. He feels a powerful urge to learn more and to share what he has learned with others. The book has been described as one man’s mission to preserve Jewish history.

Other notable programs include:
Pianist & singer Tom Stanfield on Thursday, March 10 at 3:00 pm
Groovy: A Musical Variety Show on Thursday, March 17 at 3:00 pm
Rockin’ Randy on Sunday on Sunday, March 20 at 3:00 pm
First Stage Touring Group on Wednesday, March 23 at 3:00 pm
Singer & guitarist Joe Kadlec on Wednesday, March 30 at 3:00 pm

To complement its special programming, Sarah Chudnow Community also offers recurrent monthly programs. Lisa Gorelick, RN, BS, presents “Healthy Living” on Friday, March 11, at 11:15 am, and Saturday, March 26, at 2:30 pm. Lisa brings insight into preventative health practices. Lisa’s programs are interactive. She provides a program at SCC the 2nd Friday and 4th Saturday of every month. If planning on attending, please refrain from wearing fragrances.

These events are in addition to regularly scheduled activities at Sarah Chudnow Community. As always, attending a class, a concert or special event is a great way to “try out” the Community. Find more activities and musical events on the Sarah Chudnow Community Activity Calendar at SarahChudnow.org or by calling 262.478.1500. Questions? Email info@sarahchudnow.org

Sarah Chudnow Community, located in Mequon, WI, is an independent, not-for-profit senior living community with its own on-site management and support staff. It offers a full continuum of care, including apartment living, assisted living, memory care, and a skilled nursing facility providing post-acute rehab care, long-term and respite care.



  • February 28, 2016

2016 Anniversary Awards Luncheon

On Wednesday, February 24, Jewish Home and Care Center and its sister communities celebrated staff for their dedicated years of service. Awards were given those those reaching five, ten, 20 25, 35 and 40 or more years of service.

Congratulations to all staff for their commitment, service and dedication to our residents and our mission.

View the photos 

  • February 25, 2016

Kussel Receives Wege Award

Jennifer Kussel, LPN, at the Jewish Home and Care Center is the recipient of the Lynn Wege Award presented by Optum. The award is in recognition of Kussel’s compassion and great sense of humor.

According to Tiffany Howard at Optum, the Lynn Wege Award is given to skilled nursing facility caregivers that embody at least two of the following four qualities:

  • Sense of humor in the workplace
  • Compassion
  • Patience and a calming presence
  • Enjoyment of teaching

Congratulations, Jennifer, on your well-deserved award!

Jennifer Kussel, LPN,with her award

Jennifer Kussel (center) with Kevin Forward and Tiffany Anderson from Optum.

  • February 22, 2016

Our Hidden Gems: Meet Josh Gimbel

This is the first in an on-going series that will appear occasionally to highlight some of the hidden gems in our treasure chest of people who give their time to our organization.

Josh Gimbel is the chairman of the Jewish Home and Care Center Board of Directors. His involvement began in the late 1990s when his grandfather, Gene Posner, introduced him to Nita Corré. Josh was at an event at the US Bank. He spent time talking with Nita and she told him, “Someday you will be the chair of the Jewish Home and Care Center board.” Soon after that meeting he joined the JHCC board which was under the chairmanship of Mike Joseph.

“I’m involved in almost every committee and this is my third year as chairman of the JHCC board,” Josh said. He is also the chair of the executive committee and serves on the board of the Jewish Home and Care Center Foundation.

Josh enjoys his time here. “I find it to be a wonderful and important experience. This organization supports the elderly and infirm in our Jewish community; what could be more important that?”

Josh, an attorney with Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin and Brown has been married for 20 years. He has a 19-year-old son and a 17-year-old daughter.

Josh’s grandfather Harold Gimbel spent some time at the Jewish Home as a rehab resident. It was during this time that Josh met Arleen Peltz, who was a great influence and they became close friends. Spending time at the Jewish Home and Care Center, he said, was like coming home.

If someone says that they would like to volunteer but just do not have the time, Josh tells them, “find the time. This experience is incredibly rewarding.”

The aspect of volunteering itself means a great deal to Josh. Aside from all of his work for the Jewish Home and Care Center he also volunteers at the Milwaukee Justice Center, the Hunger Task Force, and sits on the board of the Discovery World Museum. Josh truly understands the importance of being a volunteer and cherishes the rewards that come from doing something meaningful and worthwhile.

Do you know someone who should be highlighted as a hidden gem? If so, contact Liz Brach at 414-721-9255 or lbrach@jewishseniorliving.org.

Photo caption: Josh Gimbel, Chairman and mother Barbara Ward, Secretary of the Gene and Ruth Posner Foundation accepting the Generation to Generation Award at the Annual Lunch in 2013.

  • February 4, 2016