Posts tagged with "pandemic"

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, COVID-19

Covid Risk Increases During Holidays

By Hannah DiPilato

With the holiday season quickly approaching, Covid cases are skyrocketing all over the country and officials are advising people to social distance this holiday season.

According to CNN, more than 12 million people in the United States have been infected with the coronavirus and over 260,000 people have died. With those that are elderly or immune-compromised, the risk of complications due to COVID-19 is higher.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated the safety guidelines for traveling. “CDC is recommending against travel during the Thanksgiving Day period,” Dr. Henry Walke, Covid-19 incident manager for the CDC, said in a conference call.

“Right now, especially as we are seeing exponential growth in cases and the opportunity to translocate disease or infection from one part of the country to another leads to our recommendation to avoid travel at this time,” Walke continued.

The CDC has also recommended people stay in their immediate households for the holiday season. Even without traveling across the country, seeing those you don’t usually see can lead to a breakout of coronavirus.

Walke said he does not plan to visit his own family for the holiday season. “I haven’t seen my parents since January. I’m staying home and that’s been difficult as I have older parents who would like to see me and who would like to see my children as well,” he said.

“It’s been a long outbreak, almost 11 months now, and people are tired. And we understand that and people want to see their relatives and their friends in the way they’ve always done it,” he continued, “But this year, particularly, we’re asking people to be as safe as possible and limit their travel.”

If you plan to gather with those outside of your immediate household, there are important precautions to take to prevent the spread of coronavirus. First, keep gatherings as small as possible. Many states have restrictions in place which limit the number of people allowed to gather inside. Check your local and state regulations to ensure your gathering is following the laws.

The CDC’s Dr. Erin Sauber-Schatz said, “The safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving this year is at home with the people in your household.”

If possible, move your Thanksgiving dinner outside. Coronavirus is less likely to spread outside where there is better ventilation than indoors. Although many places are getting cold, tell your guests to load up with blankets and winter gear. If it’s too cold for an outside gathering, keep the windows open to ventilate the area.

One of the most important and simplest things you can do to stop the spread of Covid is to wear a mask. In many states, masks are required in public places and Thanksgiving dinner should be no exception. Keep your mask on unless eating and remain six feet away from other guests.

It is also recommended that guests handle making their own food and bringing their own utensils to Thanksgiving dinner this year. This prevents the spread of germs as well as cross-contamination between households. Remember to frequently wash your hands when cooking, eating and generally to stop the spread of germs.

Covid cases are rising in communities as well as healthcare networks which is making the virus even harder to handle. Many more people are becoming hospitalized due to the virus and healthcare workings are at risk.

According to the Associated Press, 905 staff members at The Mayo Clinic Health System have been infected with coronavirus in the last two weeks. The Mayo Clinic Health System is a network of clinics and hospitals in the midwest that are run by Mayo Clinic.

Executive dean of Mayo Clinic Practice, Dr. Amy Williams, said that most cases came from exposure within the community and not from work. “It shows how widely spread this is in our communities and how easy it is to get COVID-19 in the communities here in the Midwest,” she said.

If a virtual gathering isn’t in your Thanksgiving plans this year and you will be seeing people outside of your family in person, consider isolating yourself beforehand. Since the incubation period of the virus is 14 days, a negative test result doesn’t necessarily mean a person does not carry the virus. Although a negative test result for coronavirus isn’t a sure sign of safety, it is an extra precaution everyone should add before mingling this holiday season.

Besides getting a coronavirus test, people should also consider a 14-day quarantine before seeing loved ones, or afterward. Isolating before seeing family will decrease the risk of spreading the disease within your holiday circle. If you plan on traveling for the holiday, consider isolating yourself after returning to prevent the spread of covid in your community.

The CDC has predicted this will be a dark winter and although a vaccine is in the works, it likely won’t be ready for mass distribution for a few more weeks. The holiday season will only lead to more cases with an increase in travel and group gatherings. As the weather in many places gets colder, inside gatherings are more likely to occur.

The CDC also recommends everyone get their flu shot for the upcoming flu season. By protecting yourself from the flu, you can help the healthcare system more easily manage the large influx of people going to the hospital.

In all states except Hawaii, Maine and Vermont, there is an active or imminent outbreak of coronavirus according to Covid Act Now. Even these three states are at risk for an outbreak. Currently, North Dakota has the highest number of new daily cases per 100,000 people with 159.6 cases. Wyoming and New Mexico follow closely behind.

Many states have separated their cities and counties into different zones depending on the number of Covid cases present. The restrictions in place for these areas are then determined by the number of cases.

New York City is starting to enforce tighter restrictions as cases start to rise. “In the next week or two we should see some substantial restrictions,” said Mayor, Bill de Blasio. “I think indoor dining will be closed, gyms will be closed.  I’m not happy about it. No one is happy about it but that’s what’s coming.” There is currently a 10 person gathering limit and a curfew for nonessential businesses between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Similarly, in Boston, Governor Charlie Baker has released a stay-at-home advisory for the same time frame. People are urged to only go out between these hours for essentials. Indoor gatherings are limited to 10 people while outdoor gatherings should be capped at 25 people.

Things on the west coast seem just as bleak. According to the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, restaurants, bars, wineries and breweries will be closed for dine-in services for at least three weeks. People in Los Angeles are being advised to stay home and have a similar curfew to Boston and New York City.

In some cities where cases are skyrocketing, restrictions are not being put in place as heavily as in California and New York. In Miami, restaurants are able to be open to 100% capacity and seat 10 people per table. Most things in Miami are reopened, but with restrictions such as requiring masks.

It is crucial for everyone to work together to bring covid cases back down over the coming weeks. As cases spike, it is important to remember that each state has precautions in place for a reason. Although many states won’t fully shut down, you can decide to continue social distancing and only going out for essentials.

Diwali light illustrated by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine

Diwali 2020

By: Elle Grant

Over the course of mid-November, the annual five-day festival, Diwali, took place from November 12th to November 16th. Known as the festival of lights, for those who follow Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, major religions in South Asia, this is one of the most important religious festivals of the year. It lasts the aforementioned five days, from the 13th day of the dark half of the lunar month Ashvina to the second day of the light half of the lunar month Karttika. (the corresponding dates in the Gregorian calendar usually fall in late October and November).

Diwali as a festival has deep meaning within the communities it is celebrated. Its name comes from the Sanskrit term dipavali, meaning “row of lights.” In turn, the lighting of Diwali candles is an essential part of the celebration. The festival generally symbolizes the victory of light over darkness. In this context, light symbolizes knowledge and wisdom, while darkness is a symbol for all negative forces including wickedness, destruction, violence, lust, envy, injustice, greed, oppression and suffering. The third day of Diwali is celebrated on Saturday, November 14, 2020. While it is widely celebrated by a vast proportion of the world’s population, precisely how Diwali is celebrated varies by culture.

Across, South Asia, different regions celebrate different deities first and foremost with the festival. Among Hindus the most widespread custom is the lighting of diyas (small earthenware lamps filled with oil) on the night of the new moon to invite the presence of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. In Bengal the goddess Kali is worshipped with the event. In North India the festival additionally celebrates the royal homecoming of Rama to the city of Ayodhya after defeating Ravana, the 10-headed king of the demons, thus connecting the festival with the holiday of Dussehra. In South India the festival marks Krishna’s defeat of the demon Narakasura. The celebration of Diwali offers just a glimpse into how culture varies across South Asia.

Homes of those who celebrate reflect the importance of the day. Many begin the holiday with a deep cleaning of their home, from top to bottom. Floors inside and out are covered with rangoli, consisting of elaborate designs made of colored rice, sand, or flower petals. The doors and windows of houses are kept open in the hope that Lakshmi will find her way inside and bless the residents with wealth and success. Other ways Diwali is celebrated include visiting loved ones, exchanging gifts, wearing new clothes, feasting, feeding the poor, and setting off fireworks. Delicious food is a large part of the celebration. Yet how this holiday is specifically celebrated this year has been affected by the ongoing global pandemic caused by the spread of COVID-19.

Before Diwali even took place, experts warned of the danger of gathering for the event, in the vein of warnings being made for the coming holidays of Christmas and Hannukah for Christian and Jewish populations of the world. International lockdowns in places like Europe have put a damper on the plans of many. Yet many are finding ways around the restriction of movement and celebration; many are planning calls with families across different continents, in which there will be singing, games, and tasty foods shared through screens. Some say it has even brought them closer as a family.

Like many holidays, Diwali assuredly looks different this year. Yet the resilience displayed by those celebrating, to find a way to connect with family and friends during this special spiritual time, again reflects some of the best of human ingenuity during the coronavirus pandemic.

Criteria to Ensure Preparedness of Federal Programs

The Strategic Stockpile Failed; Experts Propose New Approach to Emergency Preparedness

A new analysis of the United States government’s response to COVID-19 highlights myriad problems with an approach that relied, in large part, on international supply chains and the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). A panel of academic and military experts is instead calling for a more dynamic, flexible approach to emergency preparedness at the national level.

“When COVID-19 hit, the U.S. was unable to provide adequate testing supplies and equipment, unable to provide adequate personal protective equipment (PPE), and didn’t have a functioning plan,” says Rob Handfield, first author of the study and Bank of America University Distinguished Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management at North Carolina State University.

“The SNS hadn’t replenished some of its supplies since the H1N1 pandemic in 2009-10. Many of its supplies were expired. And there was no clear leadership. Federal authorities punted problems to the states, leaving states to fight each other for limited resources. And the result was chaos.

“We need to be talking about this now, because the nation needs to be better prepared next time. And there is always a next time.”

To that end, Handfield and collaborators from NC State, Arizona State University, the Naval Postgraduate School and the Air Force’s Contracting Career Field Management Team came together to outline the components that are necessary to ensure that there is an adequate federal response to future health crises. They determined that an effective federal program needs to address five criteria:

1). More Flexibility: In order to respond to unanticipated threats, any government system needs to have sufficient market intelligence to insure that it has lots of options, relationships and suppliers across the private sector for securing basic needs. 

“You can’t stockpile supplies for every possible contingency,” Handfield says.

2). Inventory Visibility: The government would need to know what supplies it has, where those supplies are, and when those supplies expire. Ideally, it would also know which supplies are available in what amounts in the private sector, as well as how quickly it could purchase those supplies.

“The same is true on the demand side,” Handfield says. “What do people need? Where? When?”

3). Responsiveness: The governmental institution overseeing emergency preparation needs to have leadership that can review information as it becomes available and work with experts to secure and distribute supplies efficiently. This would be an ongoing process, rather than a system that is put in place only in the event of crises.

4). Global Independence: The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the fact that the U.S. has outsourced manufacturing of critical biomedical materiel, because it was cheaper. Authorities need to consider investing in domestic manufacturing of PPE, testing supplies and equipment, pharmaceutical chemicals, syringes, and other biomedical supplies.

“The past year has really driven home the consequences of being dependent on other nations to meet basic needs during a pandemic,” Handfield says. “Relying largely on the least expensive suppliers for a given product has consequences.”

5). Equitable: The government needs to ensure that supplies get to where they are most needed in order to reduce the infighting and hoarding that we’ve seen in the COVID-19 pandemic.

“A first step here is to settle on a way of determining how to prioritize needs and how we would define an equitable allocation and distribution of supplies,” Handfield says.

The last ingredient is bureaucratic: Coordinating all five of these components should be done by a permanent team that is focused solely on national preparation and ensuring that the relevant federal agencies are all on the same page.

“This is a fundamental shift away from the static approach of the SNS,” Handfield says. “We need to begin exploring each of these components in more detail – and defining what a governing structure would look like. We don’t know how long we’ll have until we face another crisis.”

The paper, “A Commons for a Supply Chain in the Post-COVID-19 Era: The Case for a Reformed Strategic National Stockpile,” is published open access in The Milbank Quarterly. The paper was co-authored by Blanton Godfrey, the Joseph D. Moore Distinguished Professor in NC State’s Wilson College of Textiles; Major Daniel Finkenstadt of the Naval Postgraduate School; Eugene Schneller of Arizona State; and Peter Guinto of the Air Force’s Contracting Career Field Management Team.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Veterans Day for 360 Magazine

Remembering Veterans During a Strained Time

By: Elle Grant

Wednesday, November 11th marks the annual commemoration of veterans in the United States, aptly named Veterans Day. This year, in the unprecedented context of coronavirus, as well as intense political and social strife, the day takes on an additionally sacred context as a reminder of those who have served our country.

Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on November 11, 1919, the first anniversary marking the end of World War I. Congress then passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, with the day becoming a national holiday beginning in 1938. Similar to Memorial Day, which is an annual federal holiday in May, it celebrates veterans of the United States. However, the difference between them is that Veterans Day pays tribute to all American veterans, living and dead. Yet a particular focus is on those veterans still with us, who served their country with honor and distinction whether during war or peacetime.

Several countries have similar days commemorating their veterans that find their root in remembering World War I and World War II on or near November 11th. Canada has Remembrance Day, while Britain has Remembrance Sunday. World War I, as arguably the most brutal conflict in human history on the soldiers, is a devastating reminder of why countries celebrate those who serve.

2020 is a particularly remarkable year as it marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War, and the 30th anniversary of both the end of the Panama Invasion and the beginning of Desert Shield.

Veterans Day has been distinctly impacted by the coronavirus, still sweeping the nation especially in the Midwest. As such, celebrations and efforts of remembrance are being affected in large ways. Arlington National Cemetery, used to hosting hundreds of thousands of veterans, their families, and the families of veterans who have passed, has altered its yearly ceremony in context of the current pandemic. For the first time, it will be livestreamed, with certain areas closed off, and embracing social distancing and masked mandates. Furthermore, the beloved observance at Memorial Amphitheater has been closed off to the general public, yet the overall cemetery will remain open.

Yet it is no time to despair or to pause the nation’s respects. There are 18.2 milling living veterans who have served during wartime alive in the United States today, all deserving admiration.

Many businesses and restaurants salute veterans during this day with special deals for those who have served and their families. 360 Magazine thanks all veterans for their service.

High Times x Oregon

High Times announced Monday its return to Oregon where more than 150 products will compete for the People’s Choice Cannabis Cup.

Consumers will be able to purchase the products and participate as judges in the competition from the safety of their own homes.

A portion of proceeds will also go toward the Cannabis Cares Wildfire Relief Fund, which helps support cannabis brands affected by the fires.

Originally founded in 1988 in Amsterdam, the High Times Cannabis Cup is the world’s most famous cannabis festival. Though the festival typically lasts two or three days, COVID-19 has pushed High Times to allow consumers to judge from home.

28 different strains will be available to try in a one ounce judging kit, then they will be ranked.

The judging kits are expected to sell out quickly, and they will be sold on a first-come, first-serve basis. The categories up for judgement include flower, pre-rolls, concentrates, vape pens and cartridges as well as two edible categories, gummies or candies and baked goods.

The kits are available in over two dozen of the state’s best products through retail partners like TJ’s Gardens on Eugene and Portland, Oregon Euphorics in Bend, Bahama Buds in Coos Bay, Top Crop in Ontario and Rogue Valley Cannabis in Medford.

High Times has also partnered with Oregon cannabis operator STEM Holdings, the owner of TJ’s Gardens and Yerba Buena Farms, to use more than 75 pounds of product during the competition.

For more information, you can click right here.

You can also follow High Times on Twitter.

Paint Splash illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

Second Virtual Teens Take The Met!

Looking for a way to spice up your Friday? Join The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s second Virtual Teens Take The Met! on Friday, November 6, from 3 to 8 p.m. All activities, programs, and workshops will be held online, and teens will have the opportunity to digitally participate in hands-on experiences created by more than 20 NYC cultural and community organizations through Instagram, YouTube, Zoom, Twitch, and other social media platforms.

Teens Take The Met! has been held at the Museum bi-annually since 2014 and has become one of New York City’s most dynamic events for teens. The Met hosted the first virtual festival last spring while the Museum was temporarily closed due to COVID-19 and over 5,000 from New York City and around the world had the opportunity to participate.

This fall’s virtual event will offer new programming and activities every hour throughout the afternoon. Teens who preregister by noon on November 6 will gain access to a special VIP Zoom lounge, hosted by The Met, with activities and live DJs from Building Beats. Other highlights include:

  • Express Yourself: Self-Portraits with the Bronx Museum /  @bronxmuseum
  • Activism Poster Making with El Museo del Barrio / hosted on @metteens
  • Airheads: The Science of Flight with the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum / @intrepidmuseum
  • Original Songs from Remember Me: Hamlet Remix with Epic Theatre Ensemble / @epictheatr
  • Still Life Photography: Create Emotional Lighting with The Met’s Imaging Photo Studio / @metteens / Zoom (advance registration required)
  • Self-Care Art with Queens Museum / @thequeensteens

“Over the years, Teens Take The Met! has established itself as one of the most vibrant events at the Museum, where young people have an opportunity to carve out their own space and make their own connections to the collection and to one another,” said Heidi Holder, The Met’s Frederick P. and Sandra P. Rose Chairman of Education. “Like so many programs during this challenging time, Teens Take The Met! had to adapt, and last spring’s virtual event was a powerful opportunity to reach over 5,000 teens who tuned in from New York City’s five boroughs and around the globe, showing us their creativity and desire to thoughtfully engage with important issues. Join us for this fall’s Teens Take The Met! for special access to VIP content, workshops, and a Zoom party.”

Virtual Teens Take The Met! is open to all teens, ages 13-19. Visitors of all abilities are welcome to participate in any Museum program. For information about accessibility, programs, and services for visitors with disabilities at our two sites, visit metmuseum.org/access, email access@metmuseum.org, or call 212-650-2010.

Los Angeles Halloween Town

Story X Illustration by Kaelen Felix 

Not the year we hoped for – COVID-19 virus; stay-at-home mandate order to working remotely. Some did not have the option to work from home, and as a result, millions have lost their jobs. Many months have flown by since everyone had to shelter in place by the policy that was enacted. Fast forward from March to October, and while we are nine months into this, it feels as if there is no end in sight. Summer is behind us, and with Fall here, Halloween is so different from any year we have experienced to date. Everything in 2020 has been turned upside down, and the world is at a stand-still.

The Walt Disney Company announced the layoffs of 28,000 total with 10,000 affecting the Disneyland resorts, parks, hotels, and stores in Anaheim, CA. The coronavirus and the pandemic have hit L.A. hard, and these layoffs are effective this coming Sunday. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) has provided guidance on gatherings suggesting no more than ten people per group.

The virus continues to wreak havoc with our favorite holiday, Halloween! Why does this continue to happen? The CDC suggests that younger age group are not obeying the CDC suggestions to prevent further spreading. Halloween should be a free-spirited holiday for children and adults to play dress-up and to trick-or-treat. By restricting live entertainment and gatherings this Halloween, those feeling down or depressed may be further affected. So, how does this impact Halloween and what are the measures taken to make this year a success? And also, help with our health and well-being? The spirit of Halloween is all about expressing oneself through a costume, and of course who doesn’t want a bunch of candy by night’s end? Many places across the United States are working on solutions to abide to the social-distancing instructions.

In the Midwest where cases continually rise though some have found a different outlet to make Halloween extra creative. Minnesota, a friendly neighborhood family from the Woodbury area used a plastic piping to slide candy down safely to with physical contact. That way the children are not in close contact with the family members, and it is a safer method for the children. According to the 5 ABC Eye Witness News, the Humphries in the Woodbury family explain their thought process on this as, “Halloween is about being outside, dressing up and doing something different.” The Humphries also mentioned, “It’s important children still have those opportunities.”

In Chicago, many are taking the social-distancing measures very seriously, because they want to see children come out and enjoy a safe Halloween. A source from Block Club Chicago says, “One Chicago neighborhood will hold a contest on the best decorated house on Kenmore Avenue.” While that’s one example of how social distance will be handled, because people can ride around in their cars and vote accordingly. Meanwhile, another part of this adds, “The city is hosting a series of event giveaways for an entire week leading up to the holiday, which they’ve dubbed “Halloweek.”  Such a fun way to put on a show in the city suburb of Chicago. Another area in Albuquerque, New Mexico have routed together a bus with ten zombies on what they call an “Art” bus to keep social-distancing measures in order and to scare passengers as they board the bus. From a local news KRQE, “The city of Albuquerque announced this Friday that two art buses would feature 10 “zombies” in the seats usually taped off social distancing purposes.” Another creative method taken into action to keep the Halloween tradition and spirit alive.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health suggests that people comply with the personal protection measures, such as wearing a cloth-faced masks, keeping the six feet social distancing measures and most importantly, continually to wash hands often and use hand sanitizer if need be. Some of the best options to celebrate Halloween include doing virtual costume contests, car parades or trick-or-treating in a safe manner. Set up a table outside with candy in separate plastic bags and provide hand sanitizer as well. Forbes suggests if you have children there are some options for children’s interest in Halloween movies. Some of these examples include, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Coraline, Coco, Monster House, Beetle Juice and Corpse Bride and more.

While we are still in this pandemic; we should applaud our essential front line responders for their diligent efforts. They work tirelessly to save many lives and they should be honored as our true heroes. Let us do our part to ensure we all have a fun and a safe Halloween this year even though this was not the year we wanted, at least we are close to 2021.

Happy Halloween everyone!

The Doo Wop Project Wearing Masks

The Doo Wop Project: Live In Your Living Room

With The Doo Wop Project: Live In Your Living Room, fans can enjoy a Broadway theater experience from your very own home. The Doo Wop Project: Live In Your Living Room, a virtual theatrical concert, will be broadcast live from Shubert Studios on October 25th.

The Doo Wop Project traces the evolution of Doo Wop from the classic sound of five guys singing tight harmonies on a street corner to the biggest hits on the radio today. The theatrical concert takes audiences on a journey from foundational tunes of groups like the Crests, Belmonts, and Flamingos through their influences on the sounds of Smokey Robinson, The Temptations, and The Four Seasons all the way to “Doo-Wopified” versions of modern musicians like Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, and Maroon 5. Now, the talented cast of The Doo Wop Project includes Charl Brown, Dwayne Cooper, John Michael Dias, Russell Fischer, Dominic Nolfi, and Santino Paladino.

With a cast of stars from Broadway’s smash hits Jersey Boys and Motown: The Musical, The Doo Wop Project brings unparalleled authenticity of sound and vocal excellence to recreate-and in some cases entirely reimagine-some of the greatest music in American pop and rock history. The show has been in theaters across the country including Minnesota, Maryland, California, and New Jersey. Now, the show will be available globally with this unique virtual viewing experience.

“They say that music has the power to heal and I think we all could use a little healing right now,” said producer Ken Davenport. “The Doo Wop Project is more than just a concert though – it’s a theatrical exploration through some of the best tunes ever written. We look forward to having audiences experience the show virtually, in the comfort of their own homes, and we think the intimate Shubert Studios is the perfect venue to highlight this unique group.”

Attendees will have the opportunity to interact with each other and with The Doo Wop Project via a live chat, which will appear next to the video stream. Attendees can request songs to The Doo Wop Project in the chat. Tickets, ranging from $25-$75, are offered for General Admission, VIP Stream Pass, and VIP Stream Pass with a Meet & Greet and can be purchased by visiting: www.TheDooWopProject.com.

Jewish Community Foundation of LA COVID-19 Relief

By Cassandra Yany

The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles reported Thursday that its donors have recommended grants of $5.4 million to COVID-19 response and relief programs. These grants come from donor advised funds and family support organizations that are administered by The Foundation.

The Foundation is the largest manager of charitable assets for Los Angeles Jewish philanthropists. According to the institution, Foundation donors have directed a total of 412 grants to 121 nonprofits to date for COVID-19 relief. 

Among the Los Angeles organizations to receive the largest grants from donors are the Mayor’s Fund, The Jewish Federation, Jewish Family Service and Food Forward. The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee was a significant national beneficiary, as well.

After the World Health Organization declared a pandemic in March, The Foundation created an online COVID-19 Response Hub, where donors could find vetted nonprofit organizations. These included “safety-net” programs that address food, housing and financial insecurity, as well as access to healthcare locally and in Israel. 

“In response to the sudden and most profound crisis of this generation, our family of donors has demonstrated its remarkable capacity for generosity and compassion,” said Foundation President and CEO Martin I. Schotland. “Our donors are selflessly drawing on their charitable funds established with The Foundation at a time it’s needed most – as demand for services surges and nonprofits experience sharp declines in giving.”

The Foundation previously announced that it was redirecting its own institutional grantmaking this year to support COVID-19 programs, approximating $8.5 million— the largest amount ever directed to a single cause. This brings the total amount of grants awarded in response to the pandemic by the institution and its donors to nearly $14 million. These institutional grants include $2.5 million that was directed during the summer to 22 nonprofits that serve Los Angeles, with the remaining $6 million dollars to be awarded later this fall.

About The Jewish Community Foundation

Established in 1954, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles manages charitable assets of more than $1 billion entrusted to it by over 1,300 families and ranks among the 10 largest Los Angeles foundations. It partners with donors to shape meaningful philanthropic strategies, magnify the impact of their giving, and build enduring charitable legacies. In 2019, The Foundation and its donors distributed more than $129 million in grants to 2,700 nonprofits with programs that span the range of philanthropic giving. Over the past 10 years, it has distributed nearly $1 billion to thousands of nonprofits across a diverse spectrum.

*Food Forward Photo Courtesy of Andrea Sipos

NYBG illustration done by Maria Soloman for 360 MAGAZINE.

NYBG Autumnal Celebrations

For New Yorkers and visitors alike, the grandeur of the fall season is just 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan and The New York Botanical Garden. NYBG is the perfect place to experience the splendor of fall with the Great Pumpkin Path, scarecrow decorations, and awe-inspiring Japanese chrysanthemums in breath-taking shapes and styles in and around the Conservatory. Explore the seasonal bounty of the Edible Academy, which is also reopening just in time for fall, and traverse the winding trails of the 50-acre, old-growth Thain Family Forest to view the changing colors and textures of autumn in the weeks ahead.

Hordes of gourds await discovery along the twists and turns of NYBG’s Great Pumpkin Path all month long. In particular, on October 24th, giant pumpkins that are some of the largest in the world arrive and will be on view through the first of November. These humongous pumpkins, some weighing more than 2,000 pounds, have been nurtured from seed by doting growers and brought to the Garden in collaboration with the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth.

Another highlight at NYBG are the displays spotlighting kiku in and around the Conservatory and Visitor Center. Highly skilled NYBG horticulturists spent 11 months growing and caring for these chrysanthemums (kiku in Japanese) that were cultivated from single cuttings, pinched back, and tied to frames. Flower buds develop as nights grow longer, and in fall, the plants burst into bloom in modern and ancient styles such as ogiku (single stem), kengai (cascade), and ozukuri (thousand bloom). For guests who can’t make it to the gardens in person, New York Botanical Gardens offers a virtual look into the changing hues with the NYBG Fall Color Cam.

New York Botanical Gardens offer perfectly festive and COVID-friendly activities and protocols. The new, limited timed-entry ticketing system staggers visitors’ arrivals, promotes social distancing, and mitigates the risk of crowding in high-traffic areas. In addition, advance purchase of timed tickets is required to ensure the safety of guests. On top of these changes, new measures include requiring staff and visitors to wear masks, increasing sanitization of public and staff areas, and daily health screenings for on-site staff.

Enjoy the beauties that fall has to offer while staying safe and healthy with NYBG today! Check out their available tickets here and prepare a lovely and colorful trip to the beautiful gardens.