AJFCA Newsletter
In This Issue
Agency Highlights
An Iraqi Who Served the US Military Gets a New Life, and Gender Identity, in America 

jfcs east bay  
Salma is intersex. She was born with sexual anatomy that is both male and female. Salma identifies as a woman. She looks and sounds like a woman, and was considered female by the US military. But she was classified by Iraqi officials as male and felt ostracized.

In December, Salma arrived in San Francisco, where she now lives with roommates: Reuben Zellman and Erika Katske, a couple.

Jewish Family and Children's Services of the East Bay, the resettlement agency handling Salma's case, had just gotten notice that she would arrive soon. The agency put out a public request for housing assistance. Continue reading here

JFS Metrowest Kicks Off Solutions to Senior Hunger Initiative  

Jewish Family Service of MetroWest New Jersey is one of 13 Jewish Family Service agencies in seven states to have signed on to participate in an initiative that responds to the escalating number of seniors struggling to put food on the table. The initiative, Solutions to Senior Hunger TM is sponsored by MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger in partnership with the Association of Jewish Family and Children's Agencies (AJFCA). The program is designed to help low-income, food-insecure seniors to get the nutrition assistance they need. The program, which is funded by the Walmart Foundation, will reduce the barriers that keep vulnerable seniors from enrolling in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance program (SNAP).

With support from MAZON and AJFCA, JFS MetroWest will conduct SNAP outreach and education to senior populations, administer SNAP application assistance for eligible clients, and act as a liaison between the client and their local government agency managing SNAP.Required Bidder's Conference for Agencies Providing Emergency Food & Shelter Services. Continue reading here.

The Big Idea in 4 Minutes - Coming of Age In Aging America 

jfs san diego   
Jewish Family Service of San Diego's Brenda Bothel, Meredith Morgenroth, and Marilyn Greenblatt presented on transportation solutions for older adults at last week's Aging in America Conference in San Diego.

When asked to reflect on what they learned among 2,500 like-minded professionals, they sent this great video. What's the BIG IDEA? "The Baby Boomers are an introduction to what will be a permanent shift" in American society.

Feeding the Future 

jfcs boston    
Jewish Family & Children's Service of Boston's Director of Hunger and Nutrition Alison Kaufman is a panelist alongside The Greater Boston Food Bank, Project Bread - The Walk for Hunger, and Cooking Matters Massachusetts representatives at Tuesday's Feeding the Future: The State of Hunger in MA and the Role of the Registered Dietitian event, hosted by the Massachusetts Dietetic Association.

Calls & Webinars
Visit  AJFCA's Calendar
to learn more about free calls and webinars. For more information login to For Our Members on the AJFCA website, followed by Webinars. Contact Megan at 410-843-7327 with questions.

MITalks: Millenials & Online Giving
March 20th, 12pm EST
 Please email Jennie Gates Beckman if you are interested in participating.
Why SNAP is Important for Seniors
March 25th, 2pm EDT
ncoa logo 
Stay updated on AJFCA offerings, agency news & current trends . . .
Join Our Mailing List
March 21, 2014 
About AJFCA | News
Find a Service Near You
Members | Jewish Connection
Annual Conference | Job Postings
   walking kids   
D'Var Torah
Lee I. Sherman
President & CEO

One of the great lessons I learned as an English major was that even the simplest language can be ripe with the nuanced complexity of multiple ideas and suggestions. Think of Dickens' opening words of "The Tale of Two Cities." "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...." Straightforward enough to gain a surface understanding, but dense with layer upon layer of possibility that sets the tone for the story that follows.

This week's parashah, Shemini, records the horrible death by fire of Aaron's two oldest sons, Nadav and Avihu. From our oldest sages to modern Biblical scholars there has been much discussion of what these two men did to deserve such a drastic punishment. But, however we might interpret their transgression, it is Aaron's reaction which I find riveting: "And Aaron was silent."  10:3. A simple statement, yet a powerful reaction. Was Aaron too pained to speak? Was he so overcome with grief that he was unable to utter a word? Was he afraid to voice his anger or displeasure lest he face a similar fate? Was he pausing for a moment until he could formulate an appropriate response (although Moses fills this void for him and provides direction)? Is his silence in itself a statement?

Like much of Torah, a few brief words can generate a host of explanations and theories. Aaron's lack of a verbal response, even a cry of anguish, does not mean he is not affected. In fact, one possibility is that Aaron's silence is calculated to keep him from reliving the trauma of his sons' transgressions and deaths. Perhaps our lesson here is that silence can be not only an appropriate response, but also an emotionally healthy response in certain circumstances.

Have a peaceful Shabbat.
2014 Ruderman Prize in Inclusion ruderman
The Ruderman Family Foundation announced the launch of the third annual Ruderman Prize in Inclusion global competition. The Prize recognizes organizations who have demonstrated their commitment to the full inclusion of people with disabilities into the Jewish community through innovative programs and services. The $250,000 prize will be split equally by five organizations. Each year, the Ruderman Prize in Inclusion honors the programs and organizations around the world whose work best exemplifies the full inclusion of people with disabilities, celebrating them as inspiration and models which could be replicated elsewhere.Guidelines and a link to the application form for the awards are available here. Submissions are due by Monday April 7th and the winners will be announced in June.
Nonprofit Growth Outpaces For-Profits in U.S.
Although the overall economy has been expanding slowly, the nonprofit sector is vibrant, according to a recent report in the New York Times. From 2001 to 2011, the Times reports that the number of nonprofits in the United States grew 25 percent, while the number of for-profit businesses rose by half a percent, quoting recent figures compiled by the Urban Institute. Read more here.
Growing What Works  bridgespan
How do you expand your organization's reach while limiting its growth? Learn more about the nine pathways to deliver impact on a transformative scale here.
Jewish Outdoor, Food, and Environmental Education Experiences Show Increased Potential for Jewish Engagement ejp full logo
Experiences that blend Jewish learning with the outdoors, food, and environment are attracting a growing number of diverse Jews to meaningful and inspiring Jewish life, reports the first-ever national survey on Jewish Outdoor, Food, and Environmental Education. Continue reading here.
Nonprofit Executive Summit   
A group of our good colleague organizations - Nonprofit Risk Management Center, 501c Agencies Trust, and Nonprofit Times - h501 c agencies trustave put together the leadership summit described on the attached flier. It is focused primarily on the governance, human capital and business aspects of nonprofit organizations and should be of value to member agencies. 
AJFCA Older Adult Services Scan
In recognition of the growing concentration on older adult services among AJFCA member agencies, AJFCA is launching an Older Adult Services Initiative. As a first step in strengthening our Older Adult Services network and developing the reputation of AJFCA member agencies as experts in aging services we must first understand where our agencies stand in Older Adult Services provision.

Please participate in this first step by filling out the AJFCA 2014 Older Adult Services Scan before Friday, March 28th. The survey will take 20 minutes of your time and will provide important information necessary for developing and advancing AJFCA's Older Adult Services Initiative.  

Please contact Liz Woodward, Director of Older Adult and Disability Services with questions.
Ex-Officio Board Members board source
New board members often wonder what the term "ex officio" means. Here's an explanation.
Boards and Leadership Hires: How to Get It RNPQight
How a board handles a leadership transition can have powerful and long-lasting effects. This article discusses how the board's handling of this pivotal moment can result in long-lasting problems-and what your board can do to get it right.
10 Tips for an Effective Nonprofit Content Strategy
The struggle to create effective content strategies for social networks either comes from not having enough time to devote to social media or not having enough content to post. Truth be told, most nonprofits have an overwhelming amount of content on their websites or other communication channels that can be easily repurposed for social. Read the 10 tips for managing your time and dealing with the problem of feeding your organization's social media beasts.
An Hour Today Keeps the Auditors Away Foothold Technology
Is the thought of an audit enough to make you ill? Are you tired of running around collecting stats from different programs and sites? Corporate compliance programs help your agency adhere to the regulations governing your services and protect you from the risks associated with substandard performance. Electronic chart records like Foothold's AWARDS software can help you relieve stress, expedite internal audits, and assist you in managing Medicaid and other outside audits. Join AJFCA's partner and 2014 Annual Conference sponsor, Foothold Technology, for a complimentary webinar for just one hour and see how AWARDS can help you avoid days of headache and worry later.

An Hour Today Keeps the Auditors Away
April 2nd, 2pm EST - REGISTER HERE 
The Volunteer Fast-Pass: A New Model for Background Screening
Your organization relies on volunteers to help you advance your mission and make a difference in the communities you serve. But in this day and age, security is an ever-present issue. Current background screening options can be inefficient, ineffective, and costly. Organizations tell us they are alarmed at the amount of time and money they are spending on administering background checks. We hear rising concerns about quality and non-compliance. And we hear volunteer managers frustrated that potential volunteers bring them a background check from another organization that just screened them.

Why does screening have to be so hard? It doesn't. Verified Volunteers can help simplify and streamline your volunteer screening process. Backed by Sterling Infosystems, the nation's largest background screening company, and closely partnered with AJFCA, Verified Volunteers can help you dramatically improve your screening program.

The Volunteer Fast-Pass:  A New Model for Background Screening
Tuesday, April 8th, 2:30pm EST - REGISTER HERE
Volunteer Professional Community of Practice Calls
AJFCA will be holding quarterly calls for volunteer professionals to learn and discuss topics pertaining to their field. Member agency volunteer professionals will speak about their experiences, followed by open discussion. If you have a topic suggestion or would like to present please contact Jennie. Join AJFCA for the first call.
volunteer wordle
CVA: I Don't Have Time for That! Making Time for Professional Development
Thursday, March 27th, 3pm EST

Moderator: Beri Schwitzer, Director, Volunteer Services, JFS Dallas

The Spring edition of the AJFCA Volunteer Newsletter went out yesterday.  If you did not receive it and would like to be on our Volunteer Professional list moving forward please email Jennie.
Donate SponsorsSupport AJFCA :: JFNA :: Accreditations
Contact Us :: Transparency :: Privacy Policy