AJFCA Newsletter
In This Issue
JFS Northeastern PA Celebrates 100th Annual Meeting



Jewish Family Service of Northeastern Pennsylvania (JFS NEPA) celebrated their 100th Annual Meeting on June 16, 2015.  The meeting was held at The Colonnade in Scranton, PA. Officers were elected.

Officers nominated to serve a one year term include (from left to right) Seth Gross (Treasurer), Jay Landau (President), Sheila Cutler (Secretary), Natalie Gelb (3rd Vice President), Elliot Schoenberg (2nd Vice President) and Eric Weinberg (1st Vice President)(not pictured).

Incoming President Jay Landau focused on increased attention to fundraising and branding for JFS during his speech.
The evening was attended by over 125 people. Over $36,000 was raised from sponsorships.  
Announcements from JFCS Pittsburgh, JCS Baltimore & JFS Milwaukee
Aryeh Sherman, President & CEO of Jewish Family & Children's Services of Pittsburgh, Barbara Gradet, Executive Director of Jewish Community Services of Baltimore, and Sylvan Leabman, President & CEO of Jewish Family Service of Milwaukee  announced their retirements.

jfcs pittsburgh

Sylvan will retire on December 31, 2015. Aryeh will retire on September 30, 2016 and Barbara will retire on June 30, 2016.  Please see the announcements from their agencies in Milwaukee, Pittsburgh and in Baltimore.

jcs baltimore

We will miss the outstanding contributions of these leaders in our field, as well as their companionship and comradery among network execs.

Sylvan, Barbara and Aryeh have led their agencies to provide excellent service to those in need in their respective communities, and leave large shoes to fill. Please join me in wishing Sylvan, Aryeh and Barbara a hearty mazel tov on their well earned retirements.  
Updated Behavioral Health Standards Released


To support COA accredited organizations as they navigate the evolving behavioral health landscape, COA has revised its standards to reflect the nationwide trend towards integrated services. In that regard, COA has combined the Outpatient Mental Health Services (MH) and Services for Substance Use Conditions (SA) standards into one service section, Services for Mental Health and/or Substance Use Disorders (MHSU). The new MHSU standards apply to organizations providing mental health services, services for substance use disorders, and services for co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders. The MHSU standards emphasize care coordination and incorporate emerging best practices in the field to prepare our organizations for the new age of healthcare reform. The Counseling, Support, and Education Services (CSE) standards have been revised to be more inclusive of peer support services and provide greater clarity around the types of programs and services that are reviewed under this service section. COA will be offering two online trainings to introduce the new service section (Tools and Training Spotlight Below).
Learn more about the updated standards here.
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June 26, 2015  
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D'Var Torah 
Lee I. Sherman

I don't know about you, but I can remember times when I was a child, after my parents had said something particularly egregious to me, thinking: "I will never say that to my children." And I also can remember, much more recently, saying something to my children that sounded an awful lot like what my parents used to say to me, and thinking "I can't believe I just said that." I think the ultimate phrase which fits this description is: "Because I said so," which is, of course, the final volley in any parent's arsenal.


This week's parashah, Hukkat, begins with the strange and mysterious ritual of the red heifer.  Chapter 19:1-22 sets out a purification ritual for a person who has come in contact with a dead body, a ritual which starts with finding a red heifer without blemish. Oddly, during the course of preparing the ritual, a person who is pure can become contaminated by coming in contact with the ashes of the heifer. The significance and meaning of the red heifer ritual has been argued over the centuries, with perhaps two prevailing schools of thought. First, there are those who argue that the ritual can be explained by either rational or mystical reasons, but it is subject to explanation like other commandments. Then, there are those who suggest that the very point of the ritual is that it has no meaning, but that it teaches obedience to God.


Sometimes in raising a child, no matter how much we desire to provide rational explanations for our instructions, the persistent challenges of the child cause us to resort to "because I said so." It is a lesson in obedience. As the Israelites move through the desert for four decades, there are certainly been many challenges to God's authority. Maybe the ritual of the red heifer is God's way of saying "because I said so." Brings to mind the companion phrase, "because I know what's good for you." Here's to the mysteries of successful parenting.


Shabbat Shalom. 

Disabilities Services Discussion Call:  Vocational Services
Join AJFCA and IAJVS professionals for an exploratory discussion call on new federal policies on vocational services and the impact on the provision of these services to persons with disabilities. Liz Leibowitz, Senior Legislative Associate at the Jewish Federations of North America and Genie Cohen, CEO of the International Association of Jewish Vocational Services, will share information on key policy changes related to employment services and assist in guiding a discussion for those who provide services to persons with disabilities. Plan to share your programs, experiences, outcomes, ideas and questions with other network members.

Vocational Services
Tuesday, July 7th - 2pm EDT - REGISTER HERE

White House Conference on Aging capital
The White House Conference on Aging is taking place July 13th and will be streaming live at whitehouseconferenceonaging.gov. Is your agency participating in this important event? Consider hosting a watch party or developing a discussion in your community. See the WHCOA Discussion Guide to learn more.

2015 marks the 50th anniversary of Medicare, Medicaid, and the Older Americans Act, as well as the 80th anniversary of Social Security. The 2015 White House Conference on Aging is an opportunity to recognize the importance of these key programs as well as to look ahead to the issues that will help shape the landscape for older Americans for the next decade.

Best Practice - Really? ejewish philanthropy
Perhaps it has happened to you; at a board or committee meeting, listening to a good presentation and the speaker, to drive their point home, drops the bomb: "this approach is used everywhere; it reflects best practice" Around the table heads nod in agreement. After all, can anyone argue with something that is "the best."  Continue reading here.
NHSA President & CEO, Gloria Johnson-Cusack, Featured on CNN
When Gloria Johnson-Cusack joined the National Human Services Assembly as President and CEO in April, she brought with her a burning passion to create more opportunities for more people through philanthropy. Her motivation? Her own life experience. On June 25th, CNN Money included Johnson-Cusack as part of an ongoing digital series on upward mobility in America. Check out the feature on CNN here.
Becoming a More Diverse Nonprofit: Make Your Values Tangible bridgespan
Building a truly diverse organization requires more than just adding "diversity" to the list of strategic goals and making a few key hires. To really transform a nonprofit into one where diversity is woven into the fabric of its culture, you need to begin by defining diversity as an organizational value and creating an environment in which all employees can truly live into that value. Learn more here.
Annual Foundation Center Renewal foundation center
AJFCA will be renewing the annual Foundation Center subscription. If you are interested please email Zahava by Wednesday, July 1st. Invoices will be emailed in late July. Service will begin in mid-August. We will be attempting to keep the subscription fee close to this past year's amount of $390. For more information regarding the Foundation Center click here or contact Megan.
Domestic Violence Professionals Fly In
Don't miss the opportunity to network with Member Agency Domestic Violence Professionals at AJFCA's 1st Annual Domestic Violence Professionals Fly In on Sunday, August 9th & Monday, August 10th at Jewish Child & Family Services of Chicago. Programming is listed below. Click here for descriptions.
  • Partnership for Safer Communities:  A Model for Institutional Engagement and Policy Implementation (Amy Rubin, Senior Director of Community Services, Jewish Child & Family Services of Chicago)
  • Rachel Coalition: A Successful Model of Community Coordination and Collaboration (Shari Bloomberg, LCSW, Clinical Coordinator, Domestic Violence Services, Jewish Family Service of MetroWest New Jersey)
  • Domestic Abuse Prevention - a Teen Approach (Sara Walsh, LCSW, Director of the Rosenberg Abuse Outreach Program, Alpert Jewish Family & Children's Services of West Palm Beach)
  • Funding (Jennifer M. Rosenkranz, Senior Program Officer, Michael Reese Health Trust)

Register here. Contact Megan with questions.

Midwest Older Adult Services Meeting
Member Agency Senior Service Professionals are invited to attend AJFCA's Midwest Older Adult Services Meeting on August 30th & 31st at Jewish Family Service of Metropolitan Detroit. Registration to those outside of the Midwest will open on July 1st. Click here to learn more.
BoardOnTrack App Seeks to Improve Nonprofit Board Meetings
BoardOnTrack App Seeks to Improve Nonprofit Board Meetings, June 22, 2015, betaBoston, by Scott Kirsner
BoardOnTrack seeks to make nonprofit board meetings more efficient with a web-based software program. "Our app captures everything. It takes meetings and makes them paperless. They do their agenda and take minutes in the cloud, using our system. There's a dashboard for the board's goals and the CEO's goals, and that is used at all their committee meetings and board meetings," said founder and CEO Marci Cornell-Feist. Learn more here.
51 Best Social Media Tools
If you're using social media for a nonprofit, you know how important it is to maximize your time and your money. Keeping track of website analytics, curating content, writing new content, and posting on social media are all important tasks. But your time is also important. Here's a look at 51 tools to help you get more from social media, without spending more time. And as always, focus on your marketing goals first. Then decide which tools can best help you reach your goals.
Top Tips for Creating the Best Donation Page Ever network for good
A lot goes into creating effective donation pages, but that doesn't mean a lot should go on them! Check out the top tips for what should go on and what should be removed from a stellar online donation page.
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