Jewish Family & Career Services Receives Two National Kovod Awards

[by Phyllis Shaikun]

At its annual meeting in April, the Association of Jewish Family & Children’s Agencies (AJFCA) has awarded the Jewish Family & Career Services two 2010 KOVOD Awards: one for Excellence in Fundraising and the other for the agency’s web sites. The presentation was made at AJFCA’s 38th annual conference in Los Angeles. The AJFCA has a membership of more than 138 Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies. An independent panel of judges evaluated submissions for the award competition from agencies fr0m the United States and Canada.

Judy Tiell, JFCS executive director, said the winning event was the “Flapjack Fundraiser” held last summer, which raised $5,400 for the Sonny and Janet Meyer Family Food Pantry Fund. Pascalle Ballard is the JFCS design specialist who created the marketing campaign and maintains the agency’s web site.

“We’re excited about the award,” said Tiell, “but would be even more excited if people could hold the date and time for this year’s event, which is set for Sunday, August 8, 8-10 a.m. at Applebee’s, 9921 Ormsby Station Rd. For just $5 per person (kids three and under eat free), you can enjoy a full breakfast buffet and help meet JFCS’ crucial need for emergency services and support the food pantry at the same time.

While JFCS appreciates the recognition, the awards highlight only two programs.

“We do so much,” said Tiell, “and yet it is never enough.” She is enthusiastic about a new Speed Job interview program that is similar in concept to Speed Dating, where job seekers get to have a three-minute sit-down, face-to-face interview with corporate recruiters from 10 local companies looking for new employees. The June 14 session even provided an optional $5 pre-event coaching session on how to use your three minutes wisely. Feedback was positive on both sides.


The agency is planning a Wellness Fair for Boomers ages 45-50+ (with sponsorship from Jewish Hospital HealthCare Services) that will include health screenings and workshops and move onto financial and estate planning discussions. The event will also feature a Parkinson’s Workshop and an official drug toss allowing for the safe disposal of unneeded pharmaceuticals from people’s homes.

Planning for the annual spring MOSAIC award program will begin soon and there is a new program in the works to provide training for home care workers. It has a two-fold purpose: to provide jobs for mainly low-income individuals and to help seniors pay less for the home care they require.

Through the ongoing and highly successful Senior PALS program, volunteers transport seniors to appointments, shopping trips and other errands. More volunteers are needed since the PALS program provides more than 2,000 rides annually. The Federal Transportation Association’s New Freedom program has allowed for the purchase of vans to be administered through TARC (the Transit Authority of River City) and JFCS will be a recipient agency.

There’s also a very busy new Shabbat Visitors program where volunteers bring Shabbat to Jewish residents of assisted living facilities and nursing homes.

“We are constantly looking for opportunities for core grants that will be of assistance,” says Tiell. If we are not helping people with direct services, then we are assisting them as a resource. We also run a number of support groups on an ongoing basis. Our Jewish Women’s 12-Step program meets regularly, and we have support groups for diabetics, grandparents raising grandchildren, those caring for aging relatives, and a job-seekers resource. We also have a program each summer for parents helping their children leave for college.”

If you would like more information about JFCS’ programs and services, please call 452-6341 or go to

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