Countdown to Jewish Care’s Local Angels Lunch with Rachel Riley

25 Mar 2022

160 guests joined Rachel Riley, Channel 4’s Countdown numbers expert and resident team member on comedy show, 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, at Jewish Care’s Local Angels Committee’s 12th lunch on Wednesday 23 March at the Waltham Abbey Marriot Hotel. The TV presenter was in conversation with Gayle Klein, Jewish Care Local Angels Committee Chair and Jewish Care Vice Chair at the lunch, which helped to raise a record amount of nearly £40,000  to support Jewish Care's services for older people in the community in the North East and Essex.

During an appeal at the lunch, guests heard about Helen Zack’s family, six of whom have been supported by Jewish Care across three generations.

When Helen’s dad, Leslie Sherman was diagnosed with Parkinson’s and dementia, her mum turned to Jewish Care. The Social Work team offered support and guidance to the family whilst Leslie attended Jewish Care’s Dennis Centre for people living with dementia in Redbridge to enjoy activities and to socialise with the support of the expert and dedicated staff and volunteers. This was a tremendous help for all of Helen’s family, relieving some of the pressure they were facing.

Jewish Care continued to support the family when Leslie needed more care and moved to Jewish Care’s Vi & John Rubens House in Redbridge.

Helen says, “Having known the home so well, trusted the carers and seen the love they gave when they were caring for my father-in-law, I knew that my dad was going to be cared for and looked after in a heimishe atmosphere. For me, Jewish Care really is like one big family.”

Guests also heard about the support Jewish Care has given to the local community since the start of the pandemic, including making and sending out over 80,000 Meals on Wheels and made over 80,000 befriending calls to support people at home, helping them to stay connected.

After the event, Rachel Riley said, “It was a pleasure to speak at Jewish Care’s Local Angels Lunch and to hear what a difference the support and care that Jewish Care staff provides makes to the quality of life for so many older people and their families.”

Adam Overlander-Kaye said, “Jewish Care’s staff support the community by giving care and love to older people in our care homes and community centres. We are tackling loneliness and isolation by and making a difference to the quality of life of more than 10,000 people that we touch each year.

“I’d like to thank Rachel Riley for being our guest speaker and all of our guests for their support and for making it such a fantastic Lunch raising much-needed funds to support for older people in the community in the North East and Essex who rely on our services.”