Seniors Thrive Thanks to Her Magic for Making Connections

Meet Alana Goldscheid, Director of Older Adult Social Programming

Alana Goldscheid, Director of Older Adult Social Programming for Seniors At Home, is on a mission to connect others. With experience working within many different social programs here at Jewish Family and Children’s Services she’s had plenty of opportunities to create and nurture connections within our community, particularly for seniors.

seniors attend meeting

Alana has a gift for making sure that nobody is left all alone. In her work leading Café By the Bay,  a social gathering for Holocaust survivors, and Memory Café, a regular meet-up for individuals with memory loss and their care partners, she always plans stimulating, fun, and welcoming events that provide older adults with a vital connection to community.

When the pandemic hit in 2020, Alana’s programs suddenly had to be put on hold in order to protect senior clients. Seniors’ needs shifted quickly from seeking social opportunities to accessing basic resources without risking their lives.

It was time to get creative.

Alana Goldscheid
Alana Goldscheid

“We still had a community to serve,” says Alana. “We were just going to have to change the way we served them.

With in-person social programs on hold, Alana shifted gears (“Literally!” she says) to help deliver food for JFCS’ Kosher Meals on Wheels program. Next, she helped run JFCS’s Food Bank for two years and coordinate the many volunteers who were risking their own health to bring food to isolated seniors. Leaving her home every day in order to help people access basic necessities and witnessing the kindness of her volunteers gave Alana a sense of meaning during the pandemic.

Recently Alana heard from a client she’d helped in the early months of 2020. “Thank you for helping me with getting food during the toughest months of the pandemic,” the woman wrote. “I just want to say how much I appreciate you and everyone else at JFCS!”

“I will forever be grateful to my clients and volunteers,” Alana says. “They gave me a purpose and continue to do so every day.”

In the summer of 2022, when Seniors At Home relaunched Café by the Bay and Memory Café in person, Alana was finally able to return to her original role: social programming for older adults. Once Seniors At Home had identified an unmet need in the community, Alana also helped develop and launch Personal Assistant services to help seniors with household management, organizational projects, technical support, and other day-to-day needs.

Personal Assistant services is an amazing addition to the breadth of care we offer to help older adults age gracefully at home,” Alana says. “I really appreciate Seniors At Home’s dedication to innovation and am thrilled to be working with a team of compassionate and dedicated individuals to bring this program to life.”

Seniors At Home—and all of JFCS’ programs—exist to support and strengthen individuals, families, and the entire community. We rely on staff members like Alana, whose passion and dedication help our organization thrive. For her part, there’s nowhere Alana would rather be than Seniors At Home, where she gets to help connect seniors with communities and resources every day. “I feel unbelievably lucky to be able to work here. I love the work that I do and the people I work with.”