About 85 local seniors were joined by 20 volunteers comprised of Central Queens Y employees, UJA-Federation members and local residents, who treated seniors from the neighborhood to a buffet lunch.
Earlier in the morning, volunteers set up the tables and gifts, including plants and mugs. During lunch, in addition to chatting with the seniors, volunteers assisted seniors in getting food and making coffee.
“We have a lunch that we do once a week, but that one is much smaller,” said Lisa Elhyani, director of the Y's Senior Department. “What’s even more special about today is that right after the lunch, we have a lecture on the Ku Klux Klan and civil rights.”
Each event was organized by the Central Queens Y and UJA-Federation’s Time for Good program, an online volunteer platform that aggregates service opportunities from UJA-Federation’s nonprofit partners so people can select projects that best utilize their skills, interests and time.
“I always like to donate my time, and I had the day off from work today so I figured I could do something to help someone else,” said one volunteer from Flushing, who was joined by her fiancee.
Erica Eisele, a social worker in the Out-of-School Youth Program, attended the first annual MLK Day of Service last year. She noticed that this year there were more participants, and there was even a boost in the amount of people signing up for programs online.
In addition to the lunch, the day’s events included a community mural for Martin Luther King Jr. Day and a gardening workshop, as well as a blood drive.