Mid-Island Y JCC Teaches Value of Volunteering

Mid-Island Y JCC CEO Rick Lewis

Since its creation in 1956, the Mid-Island Y Jewish Community Center (Y JCC), centered around Jewish identity, family, and fellowship, has been active in its Plainview location, but the Y’s community outreach has far more to offer than within the neighborhood.

Regardless of age, fitness level, ability, or interest, the Y offers something for everyone. With membership, community members have access to a fitness center, heated pool, gymnasium, babysitting services, cultural activities, afterschool programs, wellness lectures, counseling, and much more. The organization has made it its mission to accommodate the needs of anyone interested in attending, and plans on expanding accessibility in the future.

“We’re significantly expanding a new program as part of our fitness center,” says Rick Lewis, the nonprofit organization’s chief executive officer. “We offer services to adults with disabilities, Parkinson’s, or cancer. We invite everyone in, exercise with them, and provide a recreation center so people can get to know each other and talk about their struggles together as well as the positives.”

The Y’s amenities are plentiful, but they never detract from the organization’s focus on giving back. The volunteer program, which is currently seeking applications, consistently schedules events to connect with the community. On September 16, the JCC plans to host a 9/11 Day of Service to honor local police and firefighters with baked goods.

Throughout the year, volunteers can get involved by driving senior citizens to local medical appointments, food shopping, or errands. The Rudman Family Food Pantry also operates year round to provide food security to town neighbors. Adults and teens can contact the Y’s volunteer services through application, email, or phone to find out more ways to lend a hand.

“People drive by us all the time and don’t really know all we do,” says Lewis. “The best way to get involved is to walk in the front door. Have a conversation with someone.”

Interested in giving back? Apply online at miyjcc.org/y-volunteer or email [email protected] Mid-Island Y JCC, 45 Manetto Hill Rd., Plainview, 516-822-3535, x347.