Sunday, December 14, 2008

Senior surfers

While surfers have been known to brave the cold Atlantic waters in the area when storms create big waves, even in winter, this post is about surfing the net, which goes on at The Front Porch computer classes every week.

Classes are held at both sites on a weekly basis and are small to allow for individualized instruction. Many people have learned to use a computer for the first time during the classes and some have gone on to purchase their own computers once they've gotten more comfortable with the technology. While most are interested in learning to use email and to "surf the net", others have recently been seeking a peek at the stock market, or have had instant message conversations with grandchildren. Others play games on-line. One woman stopped by recently to learn how to use Skype so she could talk with friends and relatives in Russia and India! The possibilities are endless.

The Front Porch Gives to the Community

Though not many people are aware of it, without a lot of fanfare, participants in The Front Porch have been reaching out to help other people right here on the North Shore and around the world, almost since the program's inception. And much of their work is done right from their own homes.

The trend began several years ago when the Summit Estates knitting group heard about a group that donates hand-knit hats and scarves to children awaiting adoption in Russia. Since that time Knitting for Angels has expanded their reach and now the knitting group's donations are sent worldwide to children who need them. While they continue to knit up many hats to give to Knitting for Angles, over the summer they participated in a project to donate hand-knit dolls for chidlren. More recently they've been making donations to local shelters and churches as well.

The spirit of giving recently gave rise to a hugely successful food drive spearheaded by the Thursday afternoon discussion group at the complex which took place last week. It took nearly three hours to sort through the food donated by the residents, which will go to feed people who frequent three local food pantries. Though it was heavy, tedious work at times, there were a lot of laughs and group shoulder massages to help everyone get through the afternoon! We've already received a thank you from one of the food pantries, so in need of food as the number of people turning to them rises on an almost daily basis.

Dear Summit Group

Thank you so much for your collection and donation to the JfSNS food pantry. We function solely on donations and it is because of the generosity of groups like yours, who go the extra mile so our program can continue to exist and operate. Again on behalf of all of the families we help and you have helped I thank you.
Alyse Barbash
Food Pantry Coordinator
Jewish Family Service