Like many students across the United States, Jenna Goldberg’s world turned virtual during the coronavirus pandemic, including her bat mitzvah. The ceremony, a coming-of-age ritual for girls in the Jewish faith, happened via Zoom, and the party her family had planned has been postponed until a time when her family and friends can gather in person.
Traditionally, young people approaching this milestone choose a mitzvah project to help others. Jenna made and sold bracelets, taking orders via social media and accepting payment via Venmo. She planned to donate those funds to support the Hearing Loss Association because she was diagnosed with hearing loss when she was 18 months old. But as the pandemic took hold, Jenna decided to support coronavirus response efforts, too.
“Once she realized how coronavirus affected everyone she knew in some way, she felt that she wanted to split the money between the Hearing Loss Association and the COVID-19 fund at Hopkins,” says Nicole Goldberg, Jenna’s mother. Jenna Goldberg is a patient of David Tunkel, Johns Hopkins’ director of pediatric otolaryngology.
“It makes me feel sad how I had to postpone everything but lucky that I was able to donate to the COVID-19 response,” Jenna Goldberg says. “It feels really good to do something good during this time.”
Although Jenna’s bat mitzvah has taken shape differently from what the family had planned, the milestone was no less special.
“You have to figure out how to have positives in your life during this,” Nicole Goldberg says. “It was different, but it was good.”
Topics: Friends of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Johns Hopkins Medicine, Promote and Protect Health