AJFCA Newsletter
In This Issue

Agency Highlights  

New Model Program Enables Young Adults with Autism to Live Independently



 JCCA's Compass Project is one of the only programs providing comprehensive social, vocational, educational, and independent-living transition services for young adults with Autism Spectrum challenges on Long Island, Westchester, and New York City. 



"The goal of the program," according to Evan Oppenheimer, Assistant Director of JCCA's Compass Project, "is to help our clients maximize their abilities, learn new skills, and lead active and fulfilling lives."


Click here for the full article.

JCFS Winnipeg 
Co-Sponsors Community 

Opening the door:

Conversations about Addiction


March 20-21, 2014

Registration is live for this  conference addressing current issues of addiction.  

Keynote speakers include:

  David Sheff, Journalist and  Author of 'Beautiful Boy' 


Nic Sheff,  Recovering Addict & Author of 'Tweak' 


Dr. Paul E. Garfinkel, M.D., F.R.C.P. (C) - Staff Psychiatrist, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health; Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto 


Go to the conference homepage for details including the schedule and link for registration. 

Calls & Webinars
Register Now for Next MITalks Webinar: LEADERSHIP

Jan. 16th at 12 p.m. EST

In this MITalks session, you will hear how leadership programming to grow the next generation of nonprofit leaders is transforming organizations across the country. In addition, Nessa Stoltzfus from Oxfam will discuss the leadership and advisory program they are developing to inspire Millennials to go beyond volunteerism and true engagement with the cause.

VIP log-in is required to access registration for this Webinar, but AJFCA members have free VIP access.
 Please email Jennie at  jbeckman@ajfca.org
 if you are interested in participating for further instruction.

Supporting People Toward Citizenship, Relationships and Full Life in the Community


Wed, Jan. 22, 2014

1-2:30 pm ET


People who live with the label of disability often tend to have few relationships outside of paid staff. Supporting the creation of strong, lasting, unpaid relationships -- those that assure safety, provide natural supports and lead to quality of life -- has been a key part of the work of Neighbours, Inc. over the past 17 years.


Join us for a webinar featuring Patti Scott, Founder and CEO of Neighbours, Inc., to explore the strategies and approaches that have been successful for Neighbours, Inc. 


Please email Sandy Rosenbaum to RSVP for this call.

Opportunity to Connect with Keshet to enhance your services to the LGBT community


Wed, Feb. 19, 2014

1 pm ET


 Keshet is a national grassroots organization that works for the full equality and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Jews in Jewish life.  Keshet would like to work collaboratively with AJFCA member agencies to enhance programs and services to the LGBT community.


Here's how Keshet can support your work:


- Invite you to participate in the Keshet Leadership Project when it comes to your area.

- Provide a wealth of online resources on LGBT Jewish themes, including articles, rituals, lesson plans, divrei torah, policies, and more.

- Help you start up a local group of  Jewish parents and family membersof LGBT Jews who come together for mutual support or advocacy

- Engage LGBT and ally teens in Keshet's national programming for youth

- Provide you with individualized consultation to address specific needs that arise in your community


Join AJFCA and Catherine Bell, National Program Director at Keshet, to discuss potential collaborations.


Please email Sandy Rosenbaum to RSVP to this call.  

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D'Var Torah
Lee I. Sherman


This week's parashah, B'shallah, starts the flight from Egypt and what we know will be forty years of wandering in the desert. Undoubtedly there was much excitement among the lsraelites about the prospect of leaving behind years of servitude, not to mention the horrendous plagues they just witnessed. However, there was also much concern about this march into the unknown and considerable grumbling as we read in this parashah. Kind of sounds like a family vacation.


The big event in this week's reading is the parting of the sea to allow the passage of the lsraelites and destroy their Egyptian pursuers. Soon thereafter, we read that the lsraelites have gone three days without water, for it is too bitter for them to drink, and the people complain. Moses sweetens the water, the lsraelites drink, and they are told that if they continue to follow God's commandments they will be rewarded. Of course, having read ahead we know that the lsraelites won't always heed this advice and more broken commandments and grumbling are on the way.


There is a Midrash about this passage which compares the drinking of the water to Torah. Torah is as vital to Jews as water is to humans, and the sweetened water is the sustenance of our people. The Midrash goes on to explain that the reason we read Torah on the second and fifth days of the week, as well as Shabbat, is so three days do not pass without Torah, just as the lsraelites could not go three days without water. Moreover, Torah as sustenance for all is part of the democracy of Judaism. Our holiest text is not a sacred book seen only by a select few, but something read in public multiple times every week. Moreover, our most sacred text is easily transportable, which no doubt has led to the Jewish people's survival despite exile after exile and dispersal around the globe. Jews are able to access God anywhere and everywhere, in all parts of the desert, not just on Mt. Sinai.


The transportability of Judaism is apparent in all of our communities across North America. The Jewish wisdom and values that infuse the work of all of our Jewish family service agencies are present regardless of where we live and work, no matter how large or small our community. Our sharing of these common values also makes us a global community and links us directly to the lsraelites who first left the clutches of Pharaoh. The devotion to education, family, and social justice is critical to our existence; it is like the sweetened water of Moses.


Have a peaceful and restful Shabbat.


AJFCA's Lee Sherman to Testify Before U.S. Senate


Lee Sherman, President/CEO of AJFCA, has been invited to testify on 

January 15 before the United States Senate Special Committee on Aging. At the hearing, referred to as Aging in Comfort: Assessing the Special Needs of America's Holocaust Survivors, Lee will be one of five witnesses.  He has been asked to address the unique issues of Holocaust Survivors and the social services available to meet their distinct needs.  The hearing will be live streamed on the Special Committee on Aging website

Government Affairs Institute (GAI)

We have EXTENDED registration until Friday, January 17th, for the 2014 Government Affairs Institute (GAI) and AJFCA Advocacy Mission.  The GAI will be held from Tuesday, February 4 - Wednesday, February 5, 2014, in Washington, DC, and you can register through this link. It is advised you register immediately to allow time to schedule hill visits.  If you have any questions please contact Shelley Rood.

Don't Deny Seniors Nursing Care
Lately, there has been a lot of attention given to an issue that is impacting hospital patients and their families called "observation stays." To many people, this is an obscure, "in-the-weeds" problem. To the individuals that it affects, it's the difference between receiving the care that a person needs or cutting recovery and rehabilitation short, which can have long-term negative effects on a person's functional abilities and independence. The problem is growing, and thousands of Medicare beneficiaries from across the country are losing access to their Medicare Part A skilled nursing care facility benefits - all because of a hospital classification called "outpatient observation."  Continue reading here.
nonprofit quarterly
The Changing Face of Caregivers in the U.S.

Healthcare is one of the fastest growing segments of our economy, and direct care is a substantial part of that growth. Almost five million Americans earn a living as direct-care workers, slightly more than those working in retail sales (4.97 million), and significantly more than teachers (3.9 million) or law enforcement and public safety workers (3.7 million). In addition to being one of the largest, it's also one of the grayest segments of our economy. The graying of the direct-care workforce is somewhat logical. The jobs are typically part-time and do not require substantial training, making such work an easier fit for a senior looking to reenter or extend their time in the workforce. Direct-care employees include nursing assistants, home health aides, personal care aids, and independent providers. Read more here.
ejp full logo
There are the matters of a body of content that a professional is responsible to study and master; essential work-related skills to acquire; research into the work practices commonly found in Jewish organizations; requirements for continuing education; certification for advanced training; a communally accepted code of conduct; and on it goes ... all of which are lacking or entirely absent from the standard employment qualifications and formal performance requirements.  With these inherent limitations, identifying the "top ten books list that all modern Jewish leaders should read" is something that cannot be contributed to with any degree of confidence.

Nonprofits Need to Integrate Learning into their Work in 2014
The Chronicle recently published an article with expert advice on what nonprofits should start doing in 2014 (highlighted below in this newsletter).  If you look down the list of tactical advice and tips, there is a bigger pattern that emerges. Nonprofits should integrate learning into their work, program delivery, and communications.  As suggested, there are three different frameworks for doing this at work: Adding, Embedding, and Extracting.  Continue reading here.
Deepening the Impact of Professional Development
Tis the season for resolutions to do better - both individually and organizationally. One such ejewish philanthropy way we do that in the work world is to invest in professional development. Sometimes, w we are afraid that if we continue down our current path, without growing or changing or learning in some way, we might get hurt in the future, or we might not succeed in the future. Sometimes we invest in professional development simply for the sake of growth and learning, and increased likelihood of impact and success. Sometimes we invest in professional development when we are in crisis, and need help in order to survive. Continue reading here.
2014 AJFCA Award Guidelines Announced
AJFCA is pleased to sponsor the 2014 Annual Conference Awards. Click on the links below for descriptions and guidelines: 

Winners will be recognized at the 2014 Annual Conference, May 4-6 in Montreal with a reception in their honor, mention in the conference mobile app, and during the annual awards ceremony. 
Submission deadlines vary, so please look carefully at the linked guidelines. On behalf of the 2014 Awards Chair Karl Brodsky and the Award Committees, we look forward to receiving your submissions.
Office of Management Budget (OMB) Issues Final Guidance on Federal Grant Reform

The Office of Management Budget (OMB) has issued final guidance on federal grant reform. This change will have important implications for all nonprofit recipients of, and applicants for, Federal grants and cooperative agreements.  In a statement, the National Council of Nonprofits national council of nonprofits summarized the significance of the new OMB guidance this way:

"The new guidance means that nonprofits should be able to focus more on their missions... charities with no government contracts or grants could see less competition for scarce philanthropic dollars. This is a major win for the entire charitable nonprofit community."  Read the Special Notice from the National Council of Nonprofits highlighting the main points of this federal guidance.

What Nonprofits Should Start Doing in 2014: Advice From the Experts
Keep an eye on the nuchronicile of philanthropymbers! To improve performance, nonprofits should pick out key pieces of data from each of their departments and review them regularly at staff meetings.  Looking at important data regularly helps organizations stop making decisions based on hunches and identify potential problems early such as no one has registered for an event or look at how low those numbers are. 
Five Ways to Cultivate Your Donors-Personally
You must have two personal contacts per year with each of your major donornetwork for goods. By continuing to tend and nurture each donor relationship, these same major donors will keep giving to your organization, often in substantially increasing amounts.
Click here for the five suggestions for the most personal and effective ways to keep in touch and develop a relationship with each donor.
Nonprofit Monthly Writing Prompts for February
Here are your Nonprofit Monthly Writing Prompts for February. Hopefully, these will help you think a little more creatively about your communications, and avoid the dreaded writer's block! For the listing of monthly writing prompts, please click here.
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