Mariela Socolovsky: Reflections on a Cold and Rainy Winter Night

Note: This is an email I sent to our CBB staff on the night of Wednesday, December 22nd after returning from a night of service with CBB community members at Pershing Park. -Mariela Socolovsky, Director of Community Engagement

Wow! This was an amazing night. It rained a lot, and we weren’t sure if guests would show up. Some of them did and picked up things for a friend too. They were immensely grateful, to get a warm(ish) meal, water, bananas, and the amazing bags that [Director of BHY Preschool] Jen [Lewis] and her little helpers from the preschool prepared. These bags tonight will be life savers! With the blanket, warm hat, dry socks and emergency blankets, and all the rest of the goodies. Kira, Abby, Susie Mauceri and Diane Abel were rock stars! Kirstin Sedlin, like always, showed up with a bunch of sleeping bags and warm clothes, amazing!! And Kira is truly an amazing leader, managing everything while talking to the guests to learn where we should go next to meet more people in need. We ended up being there for a long hour and a half and the pop-up tent was so helpful! Thank you, Rabbi Daniel, for the suggestion, and Abad for the help.

Susie, Kira, Abby and I drove to the train station to meet more clients there. And then to the warming center at the Unitarian church to share all the leftovers.

Rabbi D, your jacket saved me (even though if anyone is wondering, is not waterproof 😂 but kept me warm)!

Why am I telling you all of this even before jumping into a much-needed hot shower? Because I want to make sure that you know: each little thing we do makes a difference, and this is the difference we make, we help someone that is sleeping in the streets under the rain on a cold winter night have another layer of warm clothing, a hearty meal, and with that the feeling that someone cares. And yes, don’t be mistaken please, YOU’RE most definitely a part of this, each little act, when each one of us does their work, is conducive to this (answering questions on the phone, promoting the Amazon wish list, giving helpful tips, providing support, assembling bags, inspiring people, fundraising money, loading a car with boxes). So thank you!! Thank you also on behalf of them.

And yes, I’m sentimental, it was very hard to see and be around this with the knowledge that I was going home to a hot shower.

May we be able to count our blessings!


Note: now that I’m sharing this with our broader community, it’s imperative for me to make sure that you also hear this: THANK YOU! Every single act you do to help sustain Pershing Park’s initiative makes a HUGE difference. Delivering the bananas, sending things from the Amazon wish list, cooking, serving, making donations, inquiring, caring. Thank you.

Mariela Socolovsky is the Director of Community Engagement at Congregation B’nai Brith.