If you aren't familiar with the Hebrew word tzedakah, it means "charity and justice," and that is what Aviva's Keep the Dream Alive event is all about.
With skyrocketing numbers of seniors living below the poverty level in America, Aviva Senior Living pushes back with a Benevolent Care Fund, which assures residents will not be moved out of their homes when they outlive their financial resources.
Michael's On East hosted the event on Nov. 13 with 160 guests in attendance. With a cocktail hour before dinner, invitees enjoyed mingling and mixing with the residents who painted lovely descriptions of life at Aviva. Through the art program on-site, several resident artists donated their works to be placed in the silent auction.
Chief Development Officer and emcee Karen Zelden kicked the event off, and Rabbi Rachel Dulin opened with a prayer. President and CEO Jay Solomon gave an eloquent speech explaining how these situations arise and told the story of his own grandmother who outlived her finances. Speaking from the heart, Solomon left only a few eyes dry in the room.
Aviva is a Jewish senior living community, and many people in attendance were leaving Sarasota the next day for Washington, D.C., where a March for Israel was taking place. With over half a million predicted to march, guest Jeremy Lisitza explained that a private plane was taking 170 people from the Sarasota/Manatee/Tampa Bay area for the day.