This has certainly been a challenging week in our community as we respond to the devastation caused by the flooding. I wanted to share an update regarding the relief effort, the damage sustained at the J and plans for start of summer camp.
I know that you join me as part of a larger community to lend a helping hand and offer whatever assistance you can to families and friends in need. The Jewish Federation of Greater Houston and Jewish Family Service are coordinating relief support and the J is a drop-off site for the following items: bottled water, work gloves, plastic storage bins, heavy trash bags, heady duty razor blades to rip out carpet and cleaning supplies, including old towels. We are also collecting gift cards from home repair stores and grocery stores for our Bertha Alyce Early Childhood School families that have experienced loss. Additional information on ways to offer support can be found on the Jewish Federation website at www.houstonjewish.org/houstonflood.
Child Care Needs
I recognize that families may have immediate needs for child care over the next few weeks. Summer camp programs at the J begin on Monday, June 1. If you are in need of child care, or know someone that has a critical need, please call Melanie Beltram at 713-729-3200 ext. 3214 and we will do our best to accommodate the family. Note that our summer programs for children under the age of 5 and entering kindergarten are at capacity. Space is available for children entering grades 1-8.
Water Damage at the J
The J did sustain water damage in the racquetball courts and the preschool gym. Work is being done in both areas. As soon as we have an estimate on the timing of re-opening these spaces we will post the information on our website. Wood floors on the courts will need to be replaced and repairs made to walls. In the preschool gym it is a matter of allowing the space to dry and to repair/replace equipment.
The Merfish Teen Center also sustained some water damage. As many of you are aware, the facility has been closed since February for planned renovations and was scheduled to re-open this week. We had a foot of water in the main part of the building. The classroom wing was not damaged. Plans are underway to repair and replace carpet, dry-wall, floors, etc.
Summer is a very busy time at the J. Our pre-camps begin on Monday, June 1, and all camps will be held as scheduled. In the next 7-10 days we will have a clearer sense of the timing of the work at the Merfish Teen Center and will communicate updated information to the Camp Kaleidoscope families. Camp will be held at Merfish!!
I wish you all the best at this difficult time in our community. Our outdoor pool complex is open. Come and enjoy!
Executive Vice President