On March 25th, 2017 Jewish Family Service of Greater New Haven (JFS) held its annual Spring Celebration Fundraiser at Temple Beth Sholom to raise funds to prevent homelessness in Greater New Haven and to support our vulnerable homeless population.
A little over a year ago, JFS embarked on a journey to tackle this vexing issue in a significant way. JFS joined their local Community Access Network of partner agencies working together throughout the Greater New Haven Region to address the homelessness problem; they became a certified and approved intake site to help and guide individuals and families in – or on the cusp of – homelessness; and they continue to serve greater and greater numbers of people who have fallen prey to this devastating condition.
JFS’ clients who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless have multiple and complex needs. The money raised from the event will support them in some of the following ways : rental assistance, an emergency stay in a motel, bus passes, restoring heat and electricity, counseling and case management services, or an emergency visit to the JFS Food Pantry with a supply of packaged and fresh food. We could not have had such a successful event without our generous sponsors and all our guests who all came out to support this vital mission to prevent homelessness.
The JFSGNH Office will be closed on the following days in observance of Passover.
Monday, April 10th Close at 3 p.m.
Tuesday, April 11th Closed
Wednesday, April 12th Closed
Monday, April 17th Closed
Tuesday, April 18th Closed
Finding Comfort and Support:
A Jewish Bereavement Group
The loss of a loved one is felt differently by different people. Some who are grieving want extra support when times get more difficult, especially before holidays.
The Jewish Wellness & Healing Center at JFS is starting a bereavement group. This group is an opportunity to receive peer support from individuals who have experienced something similar so you can cope a little easier.
The first meeting is scheduled prior to the holiday of Passover- which is so family centered- when the loss might be felt more acutely. Each group member will get the opportunity to verbalize their feelings and receive appropriate feedback from other group members and the facilitator.
Rabbi Fred Hyman, Ed.D, Director of Pastoral Counseling of the JFS Jewish Wellness and Healing Center, who has many years of experience as a congregational rabbi and as a mental health clinician, will facilitate this group.
The first groups will take place Tuesday, March 28 and Tuesday, April 25 beginning at 6:00 p.m. at the JFS office 1440 Whalley Ave. New Haven.
If a bereavement support group might be of help to you, please know that you are
welcome to come to either of these groups.
For more information and/or registration, please contact
Rabbi Fred Hyman at 203-389-5599, ext. 135
Once a month, the JFS Food Pantry and Nutritional Health Center hosts “Rabbinic Wednesdays.” Organized by Rabbis Hesch Sommer and Steve Steinberg, local rabbis from the Greater New Haven area volunteer at the JFS Food Pantry. Rabbinic Wednesdays are an opportunity for individuals who utilize the services of the Pantry to meet and interact with the rabbis as the rabbis model an aspect of “tikkun olam.” The rabbis get involved in the hands-on operations of the Pantry, including greeting clients, stocking shelves, bagging groceries and assisting with storing and distributing fresh and frozen foods. “We hope that our rabbinic participation will spread the word to the Jewish community of the importance of supporting the JFS Food Pantry,” commented Rabbi Sommer. Pictured are Rabbi Hesch Sommer working the frozen and fresh produce area, and Rabbis Jon-Jay Tilsen and Steve Steinberg stocking shelves.
January is National Soup Month and there’s no better time to kick off our JFS Food Pantry “Souper” Bowl leading up to NFL’s biggest event of the year on February 5th. For the next 18 days, the JFS Food Pantry will be collecting canned and/or dry soup mixes to help in its fight against Hunger. Don’t stand on the sidelines!! Take a time out and help us gain the offensive lead in tackling food insecurity in our local community. Our team is ready to receive your canned soup and/or boxed soup donations! Donations can be handed off at the JFS Food Pantry on January 19, 25, 26, or February 1 and February 2 from 8:30 – 12:30; or donations can also be dropped off at the JFS main office during non-pantry hours.
Save the date and plan to join us for our Special Spring Celebration on March 25, 2017! Enjoy an evening of Jazz featuring the Jassmen with Master of Ceremony WTNH’s Jacquie Slater. This Saturday evening event will begin at 8 p.m. and will include a light dinner.
Proceeds from this event will help in our mission to end homelessness through our Emergency Housing and Homelessness Prevention Program. JFS does its best to forestall and/or mitigate housing crises by simultaneously working with our families via financial and mental health counseling, comprehensive case management, community advocacy, benefits screening, housing dispute mediation, information and referrals, and vocational coaching. The target population for our Emergency Housing and Homelessness Prevention Program is individuals and families residing in Greater New Haven County who are confronting homelessness due to dire financial circumstances that threaten their ability to maintain or obtain suitable housing arrangements. Given the overwhelming need in our community for housing assistance, priority has always been given to those who face imminent danger of losing their current homes, and, as a result, face potential homelessness. Today, a family in our region needs to earn at least $45,000 to afford a two-bedroom apartment.
In 2016, JFS began its participation in the Greater New Haven Coordinated Access Network. As such, we provide drop-in intake hours to assist clients with who are at immediate risk of homelessness. Many of our referrals come through The United Way InfoLine 2-1-1. This work is geared toward providing housing diversion interventions, targeting individuals and families at the very critical state as they are applying for entry into shelters.
Reservations and ticket information for this event will be released shortly.
After seven years of leading the JFSGNH Jewish Wellness and Healing Center, Rabbi Hesch Sommer will be retiring at the end of 2016. Rabbi Sommer, working with community leaders, developed a partnership with agencies throughout the Greater New Haven community to offer pastoral care and counseling to individuals who all too often were left underserved. The JWHC is actually a “center without walls,” in which support through programming and pastoral outreach is offered wherever a need is identified.
The work of the JWHC will continue, with the educational programs to be facilitated by Sydney Perry and the pastoral care and counseling to be offered by Rabbi Fred Hyman. Please check our website link to the Wellness and Healing Center for upcoming programs and support groups. Sydney Perry and Rabbi Hyman will both be joining the JFSGNH staff in January, and they can be reached after January 1st by contacting JFS of Greater New Haven (203-389-5599). Ms. Perry’s extension will be 117 and Rabbi Hyman’s voice mail extension will be 135.
Rosa DeLauro Honored For Her Dedication to Children
On Thursday, November 3rd, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro was honored by Food4Kids New Haven during a celebration at Lo Ricco Towers in New Haven. The event was a celebration and appreciation of DeLauro’s many years of hard work and dedication to issues affecting children and families – especially childhood hunger. Rosa is a leader and a powerful voice in fighting to improve and expand federal support for child nutrition and for modernizing our food safety system. She continually advocates for the School Lunch Program, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provide critical aid to aid children and families at or below the federal poverty level.
Food4Kids New Haven provides weekend supplemental food to school children in New Haven. The bags, designed to discreetly tuck in backpacks, contain kid-friendly, non-perishable foods that can be easily opened and consumed. This program, now in its fourth year, is a joint project between Jewish Family Service of Greater New Haven and Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven. To support his vital program, please click here and be sure to specify “Food4Kids” in the program designation.
Help Local Families Celebrate Thanksgiving
For many of us, the holidays are a time to celebrate with family, friends and food. Yet for some of our neighbors, feeding their families is a daily struggle and a holiday feast is a luxury they cannot afford. Jewish Family Service of Greater New Haven would like to help these families by providing traditional holiday food for the Thanksgiving Holiday. This year the JFSGNH Food Pantry and Nutritional Health Center will be distributing more than 250 bags of non-perishable foods, fresh produce and gift cards to people who need holiday assistance. Your contribution to the JFSGNH Food Assistance Program will help many local families to be able to celebrate the upcoming holidays and beyond. To donate please click here and be sure to specify “Thanksgiving” in your program choice.