Jewish Federation Breaks Ground for Expansion

CEO, Youngstown Area Jewish Federation

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Although the challenges of 2020 weren’t eliminated in 2021, it was nonetheless an exciting year for Youngstown Area Jewish Federation.

The federation, founded in 1935, was established to foster the welfare of the Jewish community and is the umbrella organization for several agencies: Heritage Manor Rehabilitation and Retirement Community, Jewish Community Center, Jewish Community Relations Council, Jewish Family and Community Services, and Levy Gardens Assisted Living.

Last year Heritage Manor broke ground on a new wing. The $3.7 million project will add 12 private rooms, each with its own bathroom, to the 72-bed facility, as well as a nurses station and a family dining room.

Future phases include updates so that every room will be single occupancy with its own private bathroom, and a new rehab space. The Schwebel Family Foundation made a significant donation to the expansion project. The wing will be named the Schwebel Family Foundation Wing and is dedicated in memory of Paul Schwebel.

Levy Gardens Assisted Living Facility and Heritage Manor Rehabilitation and Retirement Community were able to again open their doors to loved ones for visits. And residents were able to participate in activities.

To better reflect its programs and services, Jewish Family Services changed its name to Jewish Family and Community Services. This agency provides diverse programs and services including guardianships, counseling, senior outreach and home delivered meals.

JFCS also added a senior outreach coordinator and a counselor. New partnerships were formed with Heyday Health and Community Legal Aid.

The JCC and JFCS, in partnership with Direction Home of Eastern Ohio, provides meals to those 60 and older in Mahoning, Trumbull and northern Columbiana counties. More than 200,000 meals have been delivered to nearly 800 individuals. The program was expanded at the onset of the pandemic as the need became clear.

The new JCC School of Theatre began offering classes and launched its first productions: “Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka for Kids” and “Wizard of Oz for Kids.”

Camp JCC received accreditation from the American Camp Association, becoming one of only two ACA-accredited day camps within 20 miles of Youngstown. Accreditation allows Camp JCC to accept campers that receive child care through the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services.

Pictured: Shovels turned May 21 at Heritage Manor for the ceremonial start of the first phase of the expansion project.