New Torah for Aged Care

October 13, 2010 by Ayal Tusia
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Jewish Care’s Gary Smorgon House was on show as the community celebrated the aged care facility’s first Siyum and Hachnasat Sefer Torah.  Donated by Mr. Joseph Frohlich West and family in honour of his wife, the late Mrs. Helen (Chaya) Frohlich West, the completion of a new Sefer Torah marked the fulfillment of a dream and will enable Beit Shlomo, the Gary Smorgon House shul, to conduct services with a Sefer Torah of its own.

The West Sefer Torah will be used alongside a second Sefer Torah which has been on loan to Gary Smorgon House over the past year thanks to the generosity of the Priwler family.

Bill Appleby, CEO of Jewish Care, welcomed the opportunity to showcase Jewish Care’s newest residential aged care facility, which opened in July 2009.  With its welcoming communal spaces and handsome fittings, the 120-room residence now enjoys full occupancy.

“We are seeing significant changes in aged care,” Mr. Appleby explained.  “Aged population is increasing, life expectancy is extending, and at the same time, community expectations of aged care are evolving.  People want choice, flexibility and quality. Gary Smorgon House is part of Jewish Care’s long range strategy to meet the changing needs and wishes of the Jewish community of Victoria,” he said.

Since opening on the site nearly a year ago, Beit Shlomo, the third and newest of Jewish Care’s shuls, has enjoyed enormous success.

“It is heartwarming to know that we are enabling our local community, friends, family and residents to worship alongside one another; our High Holiday services were jam-packed,” said Mr. Appleby.

“What is special about Gary Smorgon House is that it is Jewish. It is a place where people in the community feel comfortable and at home.”

Jewish Care’s sensitivity to the unique cultural needs of the Jewish community, together with the highest standards of professionalism, is what sets us apart,” Mr Appleby said.

The traditional Hachnasat Sefer Torah procession was accompanied by music and dancing followed by refreshments in Gary Smorgon House’s spacious ground floor lounge.

“Bringing the community together is what Jewish Care is all about,” Mr. Appleby said.

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