JFSLA Begins Reopening Senior Dining Centers

On Monday, June 27th, Anita & Stanley’s Kosher Café, Jewish Family Service LA’s senior dining center at the JFS Gunther-Hirsh Family Center, reopened for in-person dining for the first time in over two years. Clients arrived with smiles on their faces and expressed how happy they were to finally be able to socialize with others while having a delicious, nutritious, and free hot meal. 

JFSLA’s Senior Nutrition dining centers provide older adults throughout Los Angeles with free meals and are a source of community, socialization, and resources to support their physical and emotional wellness. There are two current Senior Nutrition dining centers open Monday through Friday – Anita & Stanley’s Kosher Café at the JFS Gunther-Hirsh Family Center and the Plummer Park Community Center in West Hollywood. Clients are invited to visit daily and enjoy a hot nutritious lunch while enjoying the company of fellow JFS guests and staff.

“As a result of being a very high-risk population during the pandemic, seniors have been especially isolated and therefore more susceptible to depression and illness. The reopening of dining centers provides them with a much-needed resource,” said Siri Perlman, JFSLA Director of Senior Nutrition Services.

Reopening the dining centers was a tremendous effort for Siri and the Senior Nutrition team. They created reopening plans that complied with City and County guidelines to ensure client and staff safety and developed a system for vaccination screening, sanitization/disinfecting schedules, socially distanced seating, staggered dining times, and meal service methods that limit person to person contact.

“I joined the JFSLA Senior Nutrition team during the pandemic and this is my first time being able to engage with our senior clients in person,” said Siri. “They are so grateful for the delicious food and the opportunity to be reunited with one another. It brings me great joy to get to know them and be of service to this special group of individuals.”   

For Judy Saks, a JFSLA client, it was a thrilling moment for her to be back at a dining center after so long. Living close by, Saks now looks forward to her late-morning walks to the JFS Gunther-Hirsh Family Center to have a meal and socialize at Anita & Stanley’s Café.  

“I missed the Center very much. I missed being with my friends,” said Judy. “This opportunity is wonderful for the neighborhood and wonderful for the seniors. It is just a beautiful shining light in our community. Now seniors have something to look forward to.”

In just the first week of reopening, Anita & Stanley’s Café hosted fourteen seniors each day. The dedicated staff of JFSLA’s Hirsh Kosher Kitchen work tirelessly to provide meals for both the seniors at the dining centers and those who receive home-delivered meals. They take pride in the food they serve.  Some of the meals that clients enjoyed in the first weeks of reopening include beef bourguignon with garlic mashed potatoes, yellow squash, and peas; curried fish with mango sauce and green beans, mushrooms, and cantaloupe; and herb-baked chicken with seasoned broccoli, potato kugel, and fresh fruit. On Fridays, in addition to their entrees, clients receive either potato or noodle kugel and homemade cake.

 “I have loved meeting our clients who come from such a variety of cultural backgrounds, professions, and life circumstances,” said Siri. “Some of our clients live alone. Others may be caregivers for their spouses who have advanced dementia, or they are a couple who met and fell in love at a dining center prior to the pandemic. Additionally, it is a privilege to serve lunch to some of the Holocaust survivors who also participate in our wonderful JFS Café Europa program on Tuesdays.”

JFSLA is currently operating dining Centers at the following locations Monday through Friday:

Anita & Stanley’s Kosher Café at the JFS Gunther-Hirsh Family Center, located at 330 N. Fairfax Ave. Meals available for adults 60 years and over. Meal service is from 10:30-11:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.-noon.

The Plummer Park Community Center, located at 7377 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood. Meal service is available to clients 55 and over who are West Hollywood residents or employees. Meal service time is from 11:00 a.m.-noon.

JFSLA will continue to post updates on our website and social media and will notify our clients of any additional dining center openings and changes. No reservations or advanced sign-up are required at this time. Dining Centers are currently first come, first served with plenty of availability. Proof of vaccination is required at City of Los Angeles locations.

JFSLA will next be opening its dining centers at the JFS Valley Storefront Community Resource Center in North Hollywood, the BAR Center at the Beach in Venice, and the Felicia Mahood Multipurpose Center in West Los Angeles. News of these openings will be shared as soon as they have been finalized. 

As the Senior Nutrition dining centers begins to reopen, volunteers are needed to help clients check-in and receive their meal. Volunteer shifts will vary from site to site but are approximately from 10:30am-noon. We welcome volunteer sign-ups for one or more days per week. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Joyce Williams, Director of Volunteer Services and Training at For more information about our dining centers, please visit: or call (323) 937-5843.