The bright lights of Broadway may be thousands of miles from National Jewish Health, but a dedicated group of theater lovers in New York has channeled its interest to raise thousands of dollars for the institution.
The National Asthma Association started 19 years ago as part of the fundraising efforts of a Long Island-based auxiliary chapter. For decades, auxiliary chapters were the primary fundraising mechanism for National Jewish Health. They began in the 1920s and eventually grew to 1,500 auxiliaries across the country.
Each year, the approximately 20 members of the group see six shows — three in the fall and three in the spring. While the group gets a discount on the theater tickets, each member donates the difference between the full price ticket and the discounted rate. Additionally, each person pays a membership fee. The donations from the tickets and membership fees are pooled and given to National Jewish Health.
Renee Flug and Gloria Berenson
For the last 10 years, Renee Flug and Gloria Berenson, who are also sisters-in-law, have led the group. They both joined it when it was led by long-time auxilian Beverly Greenspun. After she passed away, Renee and Gloria were worried that the group would not continue.
“We said, ‘We can’t just let this group die,’” Renee said. “You don’t just give up on a good cause.”
Over the years, the group has supported numerous asthma research and care programs at National Jewish Health, a leading respiratory hospital in the nation.
“It’s a pleasure to do it,” said Gloria. “It’s a good cause to support, and we’ll keep giving as long as we can.”
If you live in the New York City area and would like to join the National Asthma Association, please contact Renee Flug at [email protected].
Learn more about how you can support patients at National Jewish Health