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Hamaspik Keeps Fires of Commitment Burning with Staff Appreciation Parties

January 17, 2017      

By Mendy Hecht, Hamaspik Gazette

Hamaspik Keeps Fires of Commitment Burning with Staff Appreciation Parties

Come Chanukah, it wasn’t just the many beneficiaries of Hamaspik’s many community services and supports that celebrated the holiday spirit—the agency’s staff was celebrated, too.

On Tuesday, Dec. 27, the third day of Chanukah, the women who make up the bulk of the Hamaspik office workforce were treated to the annual staff appreciation party.

For the bulk of the day, the employees were able to escape their desks and daily routines for hours of amusement and reinvigoration—and to socialize and connect with fellow employees in a non-work setting.

“It was really good to see and schmooze with the staff from the entire agency- not just the people I work with on a daily basis,” one Hamaspik employee told the Gazette.  “It was also nice to see the faces behind the names and voices of those in different Hamaspik agency locations whom I deal with on a regular (or not so regular) basis.”

Hamaspik Special Events Coordinator Mrs. Brenda Katina once again pulled off an exciting program that included painting take-home artwork, an interactive crowd-pleasing game, and a delicious lunch.

The highlight of the staff appreciation party, most attendees later said, was the therapeutic exercise/dance session with Kangoo exercise shoes.  Wearing the spring-loaded boots, staff bounced the afternoon away to various exercise/dance routines set to high-energy music and led by a professional instructor.

“It was very high spirited fun,” said one.  “One-of-a-kind,” reported another—“fun, challenging, invigorating, and an air of camaraderie for all participants.”  “Amazing!”, “awesome!”, “fantastic”, “the best” and “tons of fun” were other descriptions of the Kangoo session.

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For the men who work at Hamaspik’s three agencies (Kings, Rockland and Orange), each Chanukah day was marked with another little holiday surprise atop their desks each morning.

One day found an elegant breakfast package awaiting each.  Another was marked with a Chanukah jelly doughnut package.  A third surprise consisted of a salad dip set.

But the real highlight was the annual staff appreciation party for men, held this year on Dec. 28, the third day of Chanukah.

The elegant Hamaspik Terrace social hall on the premises of Hamaspik of Rockland County’s central hub was transformed into a Hamaspik convention of sorts, as leaders and administrative employees from three counties sat around formally-set round tables for lunch and socializing.

With Hamaspik Gazette Yiddish Editor Zishe Muller presiding as Master of Ceremonies, each division head took the floor to share a few words of camaraderie and simultaneously report on current goings-on in their departments, plus plans for the future.

As such, the crowd heard from Hamaspik founder and Rockland County Executive Director Meyer Wertheimer, Hamaspik of Kings County Executive Director Joel Freund, Hamaspik of Orange County Executive Director Moses Wertheimer, HamaspikCare Director Asher Katz, and Hamaspik Choice Executive Director Yoel Bernath.

Each thanked their employee body for making Hamaspik the ongoing success story that it is.

Interspersing their brief comments were several musical interludes by professional musician Bill Williams, a virtuoso at the rarely-played glass harp.  The ethereal tones of the unusual instrument, consisting of a table of water-filled wine glasses of descending scale which are played by rubbing their rims with wet fingertips, captivated the audience before, during and after the afternoon event.

The event’s “keynote address” was a fascinating interactive workshop led for the workers by Mr. Shimon Melber, a professional organization/time-management coach. 

Using several handouts and big-screen projections, Mr. Melber walked the Hamaspik employee body through the process of getting an optimum handle on managing their time, prioritizing their tasks, and, most important of all, engaging in productive work and long-term planning.

Each employee also left with a personal gift from the company, a set of leather-bound booklets containing traditional Shabbos songs for their Shabbos tables.

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Most importantly, though, employees came away feeling appreciated for the hard work they put in all year ‘round. 

One employee put it best: “It was nice to be acknowledged.”