Five Towns Kiwanis continues helping through coronavirus outbreak


Kiwanis Club of the Five Towns weekly meetings have been canceled for the foreseeable future because of the coronavirus pandemic, however members of the civic-minded charitable organization continue to serve its community.

Immediate Past President Tom Cohen said that the 76-year-old group has, under the leadership of current President Anthony Campanile, contacted several local organizations asking if they needed help. 

“Yesterday [March 31] we were in touch with Rabbi [Steven] Graber from Temple Hillel in North Woodmere,” Cohen told the Herald in an email.  “The rabbi supervises our annual model Passover Seder, unfortunately this year's was canceled due to coronavirus. The Five Towns club is renewing their commitment regardless and is donating $400 to the temple.”

Cohen added that the Town of Hempstead’s Oceanside Senior Center, although closed, is still offering food and meals to local seniors. The club arranged with a local delicatessen to provide box lunches for 40 seniors who still come to center for food assistance, while maintaining their social distancing. Five Towns Club member and Woodmere resident Ann DeMichael is still actively seeking food donations for the seniors.

After contacting Mount Sinai South Nassau Hospital board member Steve Gold, the Five Towns club decided a monetary contribution would be the best course of action and will be donating shortly, Cohen said.

The club also contacted the Nassau County Police Department’s Fourth Precinct in Hewlett and is coordinating with the police for the best methods to assist our first responders. 

Annually the Five Towns club endows scholarships to three local high schools: Hewlett, Lawrence and Lynbrook. In spite of discontinued daily school operations and unknown or postponed graduation and award ceremonies, the club will maintain its commitment to all three schools. The 2020 annual club budget calls for $15,000 in scholarships, roughly 10 scholarships to Lawrence High and three to Hewlett and Lynbrook, Cohen noted.

“The Five Towns club has a fiscally sound charitable foundation and has maintained a reserve program for inevitable disasters, so there should be no impact to those deserving students,” he stated in the email.

“The scholarship program at Hewlett High School includes the Carl and Alice Grossman Educational Scholarship and the Bernie Schwartz Humanitarian Scholarship,” he said in the mail. “Each of the local schools receive a Giacomo Campanile Educational Scholarship Award.”

Should you want to help DeMichael with food donations for the seniors, call her at (516) 361-8020.