By Rob Abruzzese
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The Jewish Association Serving the Aging (JASA) sold pink pens in a fundraising effort for breast cancer awareness. On Tuesday, JASA donated the monies to the Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert (JALBCA).
“(JALBCA) was nice enough to help us out last year so we do whatever we can to help them out," said Sue Ann Partnow, Director of JASA. "They give a lot of lectures and workshops for different kinds of health issues to educate seniors and last year they spoke to JASA about breast cancer awareness."
This year, they raised $405 from the pink pens sold. Last year, JASA sold pink pins to raise money for JALBCA.
JASA also helps out nursing homes in Canarsie and Bensonhurst, donating homemade bracelets, pillows, clothes pins, blankets, berets, and other arts and craft items that its members have made.
In addition, JASA members collect items for veteran homes that they visit in Queens. "It brightens [the veterans’] day because they don't get a lot of visitors," Partnow said.
JALBCA is an organization that is dedicated to mobilizing the legal community of Brooklyn and New York City to help fight breast cancer. It began in 1992 after Brooklyn Judge Sybil Hart Kooper died of breast cancer in 1991.
JALBCA was established by New York State Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye and other appellate court judges. While its first meeting was a modest gathering in the back of a Little Italy restaurant, just a year later JALBCA drew nearly 200 to the Water's Edge in Long Island City, and on Monday the organization brought 700 attendees to Cipiriani Wall Street, where it raised over $120,000.
“With over 700 people in attendance, our annual awards dinner on Monday was by far our most well-attended event," said Brooklyn Supreme Court Judge Ellen M. Spodek, who is on the JALBCA Board of Directors. “It allowed us to raise quite a bit of money for the vans and for grants.”
Most of that money came from auctioning off sponsorships to mobile mammography vans that screen women for breast cancer. Thanks to Monday night’s fundraiser, there will be 30 vans traveling throughout New York City, Suffolk, and Westchester counties, screening women with little or no health insurance.
In addition to providing the vans, JALBCA also gives grants to organizations that provide legal counsel for women with cancer and their families, as well as grants to centers for families coping with cancer.